• Thanks to an insatiable appetite and a rapid rate of reproduction, each starfish in the «herd» can consume up to six square meters of coral reefs in the year, destroying massive portions

  • Reed cane toad is a huge toxic amphibian native to Central and South America, which was brought to the islands to reduce the number of beetles feeding on sugarcane plantations. Instead, cane toads bred in huge territory and brought local fauna in decline.

  • Chinese mitten crab is a dangerous invasive species. Currently its range extends from Germany and France to the Netherlands, Belgium, Sweden, Finland, Portugal and Poland. It appeared on the Onega and the Volga rivers. It causes damage by destroying dams, damaging the network, and moreover, it is a carrier of a dangerous disease, crewfish plague

  • In the XX century mussel larvae zebra reached North America with the ballast water and, since 1988, colonized the Great Lakes system very quickly. According to some estimates, during 20 years two types of zebra mussel has caused damage to the North American economy measured in hundreds of millions USD

  • Today the population of the red king crab in the Barents Sea is three times more than the Far East crab population! He got right up to the Lofoten Islands and Norway has declared crab as harmful alien subject that should be completely eradicated

  • Rotan which spread in Eastern and Central Europe has filled most part of the territory of Russia. He is considered weedy fish, he eats the eggs and fry of other fish. Well, thankfully rotan eats its own kids (sometimes thair amount can reach up to 80% of the diet), otherwise it would have become almost the only kind of fish in certain waters

  • In 1870-s, Krebspest swept across France and then Europe. Then in Europe, it was decided to bring signal crawfish from the USA. But it was revealed too late that this kind of crawfish cariies the disease but remais immune to it. Now 25 european countries are fighting against this disease.

  • Muskrat is one of the most important commercial species of fur, it gives valuable durable skins. Its meat is edible, in North America, this animal is even called «water rabbit». However, it is harms agriculture, especially rice; it broods with no control and destroys aquatic and riparian vegetation

  • Initially, brine lived in Peter the Great Bay (Far East) and the coast of Japan, but in the first half of the XX century, these clams were brought into the Black Sea. In the absence of natural predators in the sea clam population has grown and caused great damage to the fauna of the Black Sea

  • The weight of individuals of Asian carp can exceed 45 kg. Initially, this fish was brought to the one of the US ponds, but in the result of floods it got into the waters of the Mississippi River, where itsuccessfully multiplied, «eating around» local species of fish

Foreign Invaders: How New Organisms Displace Aborigens

At the American Ecological Society conference, held in August, scientists called lionfish (Pterois) a real terminator. And there’s a good reason: the usual predators destroy their prey until there’s not much of it left and then move to another area. Lionfish stay at the same place until they eat the entire population. According to Kurt Indzhmen, the scientist from the University of Oregon, lionfish doesn’t stop until it destroys the last of his victims, like Terminator from James Cameron films.

But there was a time when the lionfish only began to settle in the western Atlantic from the Pacific and Indian Oceans. In 1990-ies the first specimens appeared in the Caribbean, where today their number exceeds the size of the populations of many indigenous species.

Курт Инджмэн за работой

There is a problem!Living creatures or plants brought from other regions, which are being actively implemented in local communities and displace «locals», are called invasive species. Invasive species is serious environmental problem worldwide.

The invasion of foreigners occurs both intentionally and unintentionally - when animals and plants became wild or escaped outside of the territory. In the first case, the invaders are specially brought and released into the wild nature. Moreover, the most common motivation is to try to get the economic income. In the period of great geographical discoveries, Europeans transported cultivated plants and cattle. This was the way carps got to the American continent and spread in the wild nature. And in 1905 muskrat were brought to Europe from the North America because of their valuable furs. They were released near Prague, from where they settled all over Eurasia, even in China, Korea and Mongolia.

If it's on purpose. And in 1935 in Australia 60,000 cane toads released to fight pests of sugarcane, who, however, did not pay any attention to the sugarcane and insects, which they had to fight. They scattered across the continent, the giant (40 cm long) and not having enemies in the wild - tragically, their skin produces toxins that causes death to millions of birds, crocodiles and other predators. The disaster bacame so huge that one day of year in Australia was officially declared a day of fighting cane toads.

In Russia such example is the attempt to adapt the red king crab in the Barents Sea for production of delicacies in 1930. Crab began to settle down quite active, and now he got right up to the Lofoten Islands in Norway. However, being a predator, he successfully destroys the eggs of valuable commercial fish such as cod and pangor. Today growth of the crab fishery is regulated by catch quotas and poaching of high scale. In Norway, it is deemed to be totally eradicated. Thus, the world can witness the unique event - the poachers are saving the sea ecosystem.

Release of aquarium fish to natural waters is also an intentional introduction. This is primarily guppies, thrown by careless owners. These American fish have adapted to live in the rivers near the site of discharge of heated water and warm settling ponds in Moscow, Tver, Yaroslavl, Rybinsk, Voronezh and other cities.

Yet there is no universal way to stop invasive species, but the development of measures to prevent biological invasions started 1992 in all the countries , who signed the Convention on Biological Diversity.

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