Great Marsh phragmites fight goes online

Geoffrey Walker, a Newbury selectman and a Ducks Unlimited member. checked a stand of phragmites  in a marsh near Little Pine Island.
Geoffrey Walker, a Newbury selectman and a Ducks Unlimited member. checked a stand of phragmites in a marsh near Little Pine Island.Mark Wilson/Globe Staff/File 2005

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NEWBURYPORT – Three casually dressed guys gathered around a diner table on a rainy afternoon looked like they might be planning a fishing trip. Instead the topic was a Kickstarter campaign aimed at fighting their common enemy: Phragmites.

The fast-spreading invasive reed formally known as Phragmites australis arrived here from Europe perhaps a century ago, but has spread quickly through parts of the Great Marsh in recent decades. Some people think it looks pretty.

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