Invasive Species Restoration Project and Management Recommendations for Reynoutria japonica at Neilson Regional Park

  • Nicole Mulligan University of Victoria


The Invasive Species Restoration Project at Neilson Regional Park, in partnership with the Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD), aims to restore the salmon habitat at Draper Creek by targeting the bank stability and developing a long-term invasive management plan along the creek bank. Draper Creek and Hatzic Lake are critical fish habitats, with salmon traveling up the creek from the Fraser River to their traditional spawning sites. However, invasive vegetation has been making this journey challenging for spawning fish. The restoration project focused on reducing invasive plants in riparian slopes by removing them and planting native slope stabilization species. This project focused on three distinct sites: site A1, site A2, and site B, totalling 330 m2. The removal of three main invasive species included Phalaris arundinacea (reed canarygrass), Rubus armeniacus (Himalayan blackberry), and Impatiens glandulifera (Himalayan balsam). Volunteers contributed 60 hours to remove 465 kg of invasive biomass from the three project sites. A group of students spent an additional 50 hours planting 42 native species. Reynoutria japonica (Japanese knotweed) was also identified as a significant invasive species. However, a comprehensive management plan is necessary due to its extensive rhizome system and environmental impact. The success of the native plantings relies on a long-term management plan, including ongoing monitoring and removal of invasive species and nurturing the establishment of native plants. To ensure the project’s success, the FVRD staff will continue to monitor and maintain the restoration sites for five years after the initial project in 2022. By planting carefully selected native species and actively managing invasive species, the project enhances ecosystem resilience and promotes biodiversity in critical natural habitats. Continued monitoring and commitment to long-term management will be essential to preserving the ecological balance and native species diversity for future generations.

Technical Papers