The University Record, March 8, 1999

Slides, illustrations of exotic species available

By Joyce Jakubiak
Michigan Sea Grant

Nonindigenous, or exotic, species are the focus of a recent Executive Order signed by President Clinton directing federal agencies to “expand and coordinate their efforts to combat a serious environmental threat: the introduction and spread of plants and animals not native to the United States.”

One valuable resource in the battle against bioinvaders is the Great Lakes Exotic Species Graphics Library, maintained by Michigan Sea Grant, a joint program of the U-M and Michigan State University. The Library provides access to more than 70 top-quality images of zebra mussels, goby, spiny water flea, sea lamprey, purple loosestrife and Eurasian ruffe—some of the most disruptive exotics to enter the Great Lakes basin. The collection is ideal for use by journalists, educators, students and researchers who need to illustrate articles, papers or presentations on exotic species.

“With the increased interest in the problem of non-native species, the Exotic Species Graphics Library is a valuable resource,” says Peggy Britt, Michigan Sea Grant communications director. “Helping people understand what these exotic invaders look like is a first step toward helping them understand the problem.”

Since 1991, Michigan Sea Grant has distributed more than 15,000 graphics, which have subsequently appeared in a variety of media, including daily and weekly newspapers.

This year, images of several new species of exotic invaders from around the country will be added to the collection.

Graphics may be borrowed or purchased from Michigan Sea Grant. For more information, call 764-1118 or send e-mail to Many of the images are available on the Web at

Michigan Sea Grant is one of 29 Sea Grant programs nationwide, and is funded in part by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.