Choking river banks from California to Texas, the tamarisk, or saltcedar, is a noxious and invasive tree. Colorado has not been left out of this weed’s invasion. The Colorado Department of Agriculture has adopted a policy of insectary combined with willow restoration to fight the invasion.
Recently however, the United States Department of Agriculture ended its involvement in the program reducing the invasive alien tree species. Fearing the destruction of the noxious, invasive tree through the use of the saltcedar leaf beetle, would destroy the habitat for an endangered bird species, the USDA has quietly resigned its role in the removal program.
Colorado is not convinced of the USDA’s approach to completely pull out of the program. Dan Bean, the director of the pest control program for the Colorado Department of Agriculture, believes Colorado’s approach of insectary and willow restoration works well to eliminate the invasive tree and provide new habitat for the endangered bird, the Flycatcher.
Mr. Bean notes that Flycatcher domain will be avoided and he said, “but to say no more beetles anywhere would be irresponsible.”