Invasive Species


Emerald Ash Borer
Emerald ash borers, an invasive beetle that damages ash trees, have been found in Lexington.
Find out more.
If you see evidence of them, fill out our form.

Asiatic bittersweet vines growing up trees
Photo courtesy Leslie J. Mehrhoff, University of Connecticut,


Bush honeysuckle infestation

Photo courtesy Chuck Bargeron, University of Georgia, 


What Is an Invasive Species?

A non-native species that:

  • has spread into native or minimally managed natural systems
  • has developed self-sustaining populations by becoming dominant and/or disruptive to native systems
  • has no natural pests/predators
  • causes environmental or economic harm

Invasive insects and animals are brought on packing materials, imported products, or as exotic pets. 

Many invasive plant species were originally brought here as ornamental plants. You many have some of them in your yard, like burning bush, bush honeysuckle or Japanese barberry.

As you can see from the images on the right, these are the plants you see taking over utility poles and untended property.

What Can be Done About Invasive Plants?

Remove Them from Your Property

Removing vegetation, including invasive species, in or near wetlands, streams, and vernal pools, is regulated by the Massachusetts Wetlands Protection Act and the Lexington Wetlands By-Law and may require review by the Lexington Conservation Commission. Please contact the Conservation Division before removing any plant material from the above mentioned resource areas.

Report Sightings of Invasives

You can report invasives when you find them on public land, using an online for or a smarphone app.

Volunteer to Help Remove Them from Conservation Land

The Lexington Conservation Department, with the tireless help of our Conservation Stewards and many, many volunteers, works hard to rid our conservation areas of invasive species. Find out how you can help.