, Newburyport, MA

Local News

January 17, 2014

Group pushes for attention to phragmites threat


A documentary, “Danger in the Weeds,” has been produced and will soon be uploaded to YouTube, members of the task force said, as part of their public information campaign.

Funds for the informational 30-minute tape were acquired through an appeal on, an online fundraising site. The film was produced by Richard Hydren, a local marketing and public relations professional.

Peter Pippin, a task force leader and part of the Merrimack Valley Planning Commission staff, reported that maps have been created to pinpoint areas of invasion. Cutting and spraying will take place this spring.

He said that resident and migratory birds depend on native plant diversity to flourish, and that the future of the 18,000-acre marsh depends on controlling this invasive species.

Authorities say the Great Marsh is the largest barrier island and saltmarsh complex in New England.

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