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Resident shares photo of ceaseless invasive species spreading across their community: 'It's devastating'

"It takes over everything quickly."

"It takes over everything quickly."

Photo Credit: iStock

A frustrated Redditor shared a devastating image of an invasive species overtaking the Appalachian region in West Virginia. 

"A devastating sea of kudzu," they wrote above the picture, which shows kudzu, a highly invasive, fast-growing species that overruns trees, homes, and telephone poles.

"It's terrible here in West Virginia. It covers everything, climbs the power poles and arcs to the high-voltage line creating lots of radio interference," the OP further wrote in a comment.

"It has really pretty flowers in the fall too," they added. "It's devastating for our forests and mountains though and is extremely hard to remove."

Redditors in the r/Appalachia forum were heartbroken to see the widespread invasion of the plant.

"It takes over everything quickly."
Photo Credit: Reddit

"Kudzu, Tree of Heaven, and Autumn Olive are the bane to my existence," wrote one user. "I got extremely sad one time hiking the AT trail because about a mile or so in, I found a whole mono crop Tree of Heaven. Can't even escape humanity without seeing how they have destroyed mother nature."

Kudzu is native to parts of Asia; however, in North America, this vine is highly invasive, covering and suffocating nearby plants to death. 

Invasive species like kudzu are devastating to local ecosystems. By competing for resources and habitat space, invasive species threaten the population of native species. In severe cases, invasive species can result in the extinction of native populations, creating a domino effect on the ecosystem's food chain.

On top of the environmental damage, invasive species also generate significant economic costs. In North America alone, invasive species have caused over $20 billion in damages since 2010.

"Hate kudzu and all invasive vines. Up northeast you'll see the entire woods along highways in upstate NY that look exactly like this but English /Irish ivy coating and choking everything," commented one user.

"Kentucky and western Virginia are covered in this awful stuff," wrote another. "It takes over everything quickly it looks like."

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