Weed Prevention Areas: Protecting Montana from Invasive Weeds
Detection Dogs

To support eradication of invasive plant populations in WPAs, we are researching the use of search dogs to improve detection rates for small or obscure plants that might escape detection by ground surveyors. Small plants that go undetected can reproduce and prolong eradication and increase operational costs.

Detection Dogs in Action

dection dog slide show
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June 2011 Detection Dog
Article in the Missoulian

border collie detecting invasive plants
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Title: Border collie sniffs out noxious weeds on Missoula mountainside

By Chelsi Moy of the Missoulian, Photo by Michael Gallacher

Search dogs can be trained to detect obscure and low-density plants that are often overlooked by surveyors, and in Missoula they are helping natural areas managers eradicate a population of Dyer's woad.


June 2011 Detection Dog Article from Reuters

Title: Dogs sniff out invasive plants on Western lands

By Laura Zuckerman, Reuters

Dogs trained to sniff out invasive plants are the latest weapon in the war against weeds that threaten to choke off vast stretches of native forests and grasslands across the West.

Article Link


June 2010 Detection Dog
Research Article

Title: Trained Dogs Outperform Human Surveyors in the Detection of Rare Spotted Knapweed (Centaurea stoebe)

Journal: Invasive Plant Science and Management

Authors: Kim M. Goodwin, Rick E. Engel, and David K. Weaver

Article Link (PDF)


July 2007 Article from Montana State University News Services

2007 MSU news article
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December 2003 Article from Montana State University News Services

2003 MSU news article
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