The Invasive Hitlist: Snakehead was designed as an innovative response to combat the growing population of invasive Northern Snakehead in the rivers surrounding Washington D.C. The booklet addresses the global challenge of invasive species, with the goal of inspiring local action and raising awareness.
Invasive species are non-native plants, animals, or microbes that cause severe environmental or economic destruction once introduced to an ecosystem. The Northern Snakehead is an East Asian fish species that became established in the Chesapeake Bay watershed approximately thirteen years ago. They are voracious, top level predators who breed prolifically and have no natural predators in the Potomac. The destruction that the Northern Snakehead has wrought in the Chesapeake Bay watershed has seriously threatened local biodiversity, and will cause substantial economic harm to fisheries in the coming decades.
The Invasive Hitlist was designed to create a culture of eco-positive recreation that benefits local diversity, rather than harming it. Our booklet aims to educate anglers of all skill levels in the Chesapeake watershed about the danger posed by the Northern Snakehead, and of the benefits of hunting it. After reviewing previous approaches to invasive species, we chose to write the book in a humorous narrative tone that is engaging without being overly simplistic. Unlike most educational booklets, these field guides are waterproof and elegantly hand-bound, to encourage anglers to take them on fishing trips. In our narrative, we take the reader on a journey through the entire fishing process; we describe everything from what bait to use to how to report their catch to the recipes that complement snakehead meat. Incorporating ecological thinking into an established fishing culture will emphasize how easy and rewarding environmental consciousness can be. The Invasive Hitlist uses approachable and entertaining approach to address the urgent issue of invasive species.