Top 10 Invasive Species in South Carolina

Ambrosia Beetle:The ambrosia beetle, an invasive species originally from Asia, was first discovered on peach trees in Charleston in 1974. It has since spread extensively throughout the coastal plain.

Beach Vitex :Beach vitex, a salt-tolerant perennial shrub, has become an invasive species in coastal regions of South Carolina. It was originally introduced from the Pacific Rim in the 1980s .

Flathead Catfish: was intentionally introduced to South Carolina and has since established populations in various reservoirs and river systems across the state, notably in the Santee-Cooper Reservoir

Chestnut Blight :Chestnut blight, an invasive species of parasitic fungus, originated in China. It was first discovered in New York City in 1904 and quickly spread, causing extensive damage.

Island Apple Snail:The island apple snail, a freshwater snail indigenous to tropical and subtropical regions of South America, has become one of the top 100 worst invasive species worldwide.

European Starling: a well-known bird species in South Carolina, is native to northern Africa and Eurasia. It was deliberately introduced to the United States in Central Park, New York.

 Lionfish :These fish possess distinct characteristics such as brown or maroon coloration, adorned with white stripes or bands that cover their bodies and heads.

Red Imported Fire Ant:is a small species of ant native to South America. The spread of this species has been significant across the United States, encompassing a region of nearly 300 million acres.

Waterthymes :Hydrilla, an invasive species, has infested approximately 50,000 acres of South Carolina’s waterways. Originating from Africa and/or Asia.

Wild Hog:These wild hogs feature a robust, sturdy build, short limbs, and a distinctive snout. They usually have upright ears and short tails, which can be either curly or straight.

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