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Exploring the Factors That Influence the Decision-making Process Behind Aquatic Invasive Species Control Methods


Lake organizations are important management entities that manage lakes on a small, local scale, including creating and maintaining management plans, monitoring boat landings for AIS, and creating a community environment around the lake. A major issue that a lake organization may have to address is the presence of aquatic invasive species (AIS). AIS pose many threats to native plants and wildlife, as well as negatively affecting the coupled human-natural systems incorporated with these lakes. Lake organizations can have input on how to control AIS in their respective lakes, but they have many endogenous and exogenous (internal and external) factors or considerations to take into account when deciding which control methods to use. While there has been research done on the effects of AIS, the control methods best suited to control them, and on decision making processes, there is little known about how these lake organizations operate and ultimately choose a control method. Through interviews with board members of lake organizations in Vilas County, WI, it was found that organizations considered endogenous economic, exogenous governmental, and exogenous environmental factors the most when choosing a control method. Social and endogenous governmental factors were considered the least. Lake organizations can be more effective at aiding in lake management if there is better communication within and between organizations, and if these organizations have more representation in local government. These lake organizations need to be as effective as possible because they are the first line of defense against AIS and can see the changes on the lake before others.

Year of Publication
Secondary Title
Undergraduate Ecology Research Reports
REU Research Report