Ada County Weed Pest and Mosquito Abatement
Noxious Weeds Overview
According to Idaho Code 22-2407, Idaho property owners carry the primary burden of controlling noxious weeds on their land. County Weed Superintendents may only treat noxious weeds on private property if the landowner fails to fully mitigate the situation. In such instances, the County will treat the noxious weeds and bill the property owner for the weed control efforts.
An Overview of Noxious Weeds:
Idaho Code lists 64 plant species as noxious weeds because they have the potential to threaten public health, crops, livestock, public lands and private property. Click here for a comprehensive list of the state's designated noxious weeds. To learn more about noxious weeds control at a national level, follow this link to the National Invasive Species Council. Early detection and quick control of noxious weeds is the top priority of Ada County Weed Control because these plants:
- Can be poisonous to humans and livestock. For instance, Poison Hemlock can cause fatalities – even in very small amounts – when eaten by livestock or when mistaken by people for wild parsley or dill.
- Displace vegetation that is food for wildlife
- Contribute to the fuel load that leads to devastating wildland fires
- Invade fields and pastures, decreasing yields, complicating harvesting and contaminating food and seeds
- Lower land values because they adversely affect land usability, or are very difficult and expensive to eliminate or control.
- Interfere with water channels to negatively impact irrigation, power generation and recreation. Eurasian Watermilfoil can affect water quality and kill fish living in ponds, lakes and streams. Purple Loosestrife grows on streambeds and displaces bird, fish and other wildlife habitats.
Ada County is home to 57 state-designated noxious weeds. Ada County’s five most prevalent weeds are Canada Thistle, Scotch Thistle, Puncturevine, Whitetop, and Poison Hemlock.
Noxious Weed Control Efforts:
Ada County Weed Control has a comprehensive and coordinated program for the prevention, eradication and management of noxious weeds. Residents can read the full text of the division's Action Plan here. Along with an aggressive plan for controlling and eliminating noxious weeds, the division also works to control vectors, or methods by which a noxious weed can be spread throughout the county. Examples of vectors include contaminated feed, seed or packing materials; motorized and non-motorized vehicles including ATVs, motorcycles, bicycles or trailers that could be carrying seeds; soil, sand or gravel contaminated with noxious weed seeds; boats, personal watercraft, watercraft trailers that carry noxious weeds or other noxious aquatic species. Ada County is well-positioned to deal with noxious weeds already present in the county as well as those noxious weeds or undesirable species that may invade or may be introduced in the future.
For more information on how Ada County controls noxious weeds on public land including roadways and open spaces, visit the Surveillance and Control page of this Web site. Residents looking for help on how to eliminate and control weeds from their private property should visit the Resources section (Coming Soon) which includes an online library of brochures, newsletters and other helpful information. Ada County's weed control staff are available to help answer questions either by calling (208) 577-4646 or in person at the Weed, Pest and Mosquito Abatement facility located at 975 E. Pine Avenue in Meridian.