Special Issue "Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon"

A special issue of Diversity (ISSN 1424-2818).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 June 2019).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Elsa Bonnaud
Website
Guest Editor
Universite Paris-Sud XI, Orsay, France
Interests: biotic interactions; predator–prey dynamics; invasive species; disturbed ecosystems; islands; peri-urban areas; biological conservation

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

As we approach 2020 and its Aichi Biodiversity Targets, biological invasions remain a serious main threat for biodiversity through a global homogenization process. Currently, there is no saturation in the accumulation curve of alien species introductions worldwide. These recurrent introductions boost the establishment of already widespread species, some being over-competitive and/or effective predators, leading to hybridization and spreading diseases.  Insular species are a major preoccupation, as their diversity is disproportionally threatened, but biological invasions cannot be disregarded on mainland. However, we will also pay particular attention to neutral or positive aspects of biological introductions that can occur in some specific circumstances. Studying such interactions can be of high interest to disentangle the often mixed effects of global change components. Many neozoa represent successful species, from which we can learn how species can survive in urban or disturbed environments.

This Special Issue is a perfect opportunity to gather new scientific knowledge, new conservation, and predictive tools to mitigate the global biodiversity loss by prioritizing the areas where management actions are urgently needed according to current and future global changes. To achieve this objective, four axes are of particular importance: (i) prevent new invasions and reinforce legislation by creating “white lists” (to transport only species with no-invasiveness status), (ii) predict future invasions and/or newly invaded areas and pathways with models that can combine different threats (e.g., habitat fragmentation, climate change), (iii) prioritize the management of islands and mainland regions where the impact of biological invasions on native communities is evaluated as the highest, and (iv) improve the management success rate and act at larger scales (archipelagos, regions) in taking advantage of scientific insights and conservation issues thanks to global feedback databases.

Dr. Elsa Bonnaud
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Prospective models
  • Global changes
  • Synergetic effects
  • Legislation enforcement
  • Preventing introductions
  • Invasion routes
  • Inhabited islands
  • Archipelago scale
  • Management prioritization
  • Feedback databases

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Editorial

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Open AccessEditorial
Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon
Diversity 2020, 12(2), 77; https://doi.org/10.3390/d12020077 - 18 Feb 2020
Abstract
This special issue points to the necessity to continue actively working on biological invasions, as invasive species remain a main and global threat for biodiversity through a global homogenization process. This issue includes six research papers, covering a large range of taxa, studying [...] Read more.
This special issue points to the necessity to continue actively working on biological invasions, as invasive species remain a main and global threat for biodiversity through a global homogenization process. This issue includes six research papers, covering a large range of taxa, studying new invasive processes and proposing innovative management solutions. The way forward will be to continue working in close relation with other stakeholders and decision-makers, increase communication efforts, solicit societal feedback, and quickly implement consistent legislation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)

Research

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Open AccessArticle
Native and Invasive Small Mammals in Urban Habitats along the Commercial Axis Connecting Benin and Niger, West Africa
Diversity 2019, 11(12), 238; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11120238 - 10 Dec 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Based on compiled small mammal trapping data collected over 12 years from Benin and Niger (3701 individual records from 66 sampling sites), located in mainland Africa, we here describe the small mammal community assemblage in urban habitats along the commercial axis connecting the [...] Read more.
Based on compiled small mammal trapping data collected over 12 years from Benin and Niger (3701 individual records from 66 sampling sites), located in mainland Africa, we here describe the small mammal community assemblage in urban habitats along the commercial axis connecting the two countries, from the seaport of Cotonou to the Sahelian hinterland, with a particular focus on invasive species. In doing so, we document extant species distributions, which highlight the risks of continuing the range expansion of three synanthropic invasive rodent species, namely black rats (Rattus rattus), brown rats (R. norvegicus), and house mice (Mus musculus). Using various diversity estimates and community ecology approaches, we detect a latitudinal gradient of species richness that significantly decreased Northward. We show that shrews (Crocidura) represent a very important component of micro-mammal fauna in West African towns and villages, especially at lower latitudes. We also demonstrate that invasive and native synanthropic rodents do not distribute randomly in West Africa, which suggests that invasive species dynamics and history differ markedly, and that they involve gradual, as well as human-mediated, long distance dispersal. Patterns of segregation are also observed between native Mastomys natalensis and invasive rats R. rattus and R. norvegicus, suggesting potential native-to-invasive species turn over. Consequences of such processes, especially in terms of public health, are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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Open AccessArticle
Aquaculture-Mediated Invasion of the Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (Gift) into the Lower Volta Basin of Ghana
Diversity 2019, 11(10), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11100188 - 02 Oct 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
The need for improved aquaculture productivity has led to widespread pressure to introduce the Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (GIFT) strains of Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) into Africa. However, the physical and regulatory infrastructures for preventing the escape of farmed stocks into [...] Read more.
The need for improved aquaculture productivity has led to widespread pressure to introduce the Genetically Improved Farmed Tilapia (GIFT) strains of Nile tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus) into Africa. However, the physical and regulatory infrastructures for preventing the escape of farmed stocks into wild populations and ecosystems are generally lacking. This study characterized the genetic background of O. niloticus being farmed in Ghana and assessed the genetic effects of aquaculture on wild populations. We characterized O. niloticus collected in 2017 using mitochondrial and microsatellite DNA markers from 140 farmed individuals sampled from five major aquaculture facilities on the Volta Lake, and from 72 individuals sampled from the wild in the Lower Volta River downstream of the lake and the Black Volta tributary upstream of the lake. Our results revealed that two farms were culturing non-native O. niloticus stocks, which were distinct from the native Akosombo strain. The non-native tilapia stocks were identical to several GIFT strains, some of which showed introgression of mitochondrial DNA from non-native Oreochromis mossambicus. We also found that the non-native cultured tilapias have escaped into the wild and interbred with local populations, and also observed potentially admixed individuals on some farms. Our results highlight aquaculture as a vector in the spread of invasive non-native species and strains, and underscore the importance of genetic baseline studies to guide conservation planning for wild populations. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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Open AccessArticle
Potential Invasion Risk of Pet Traded Lizards, Snakes, Crocodiles, and Tuatara in the EU on the Basis of a Risk Assessment Model (RAM) and Aquatic Species Invasiveness Screening Kit (AS-ISK)
Diversity 2019, 11(9), 164; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11090164 - 13 Sep 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Because biological invasions can cause many negative impacts, accurate predictions are necessary for implementing effective restrictions aimed at specific high-risk taxa. The pet trade in recent years became the most important pathway for the introduction of non-indigenous species of reptiles worldwide. Therefore, we [...] Read more.
Because biological invasions can cause many negative impacts, accurate predictions are necessary for implementing effective restrictions aimed at specific high-risk taxa. The pet trade in recent years became the most important pathway for the introduction of non-indigenous species of reptiles worldwide. Therefore, we decided to determine the most common species of lizards, snakes, and crocodiles traded as pets on the basis of market surveys in the Czech Republic, which is an export hub for ornamental animals in the European Union (EU). Subsequently, the establishment and invasion potential for the entire EU was determined for 308 species using proven risk assessment models (RAM, AS-ISK). Species with high establishment potential (determined by RAM) and at the same time with high potential to significantly harm native ecosystems (determined by AS-ISK) included the snakes Thamnophis sirtalis (Colubridae), Morelia spilota (Pythonidae) and also the lizards Tiliqua scincoides (Scincidae) and Intellagama lesueurii (Agamidae). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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Open AccessArticle
The Invasive Niche, a Multidisciplinary Concept Illustrated by Gorse (Ulex Europaeus)
Diversity 2019, 11(9), 162; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11090162 - 12 Sep 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
This study analyzes the natural and social factors influencing the emergence and publicization of the invasive status of a fast-growing bush, gorse (Ulex europaeus), by comparison between countries on a global scale. We used documents collected on the web in a [...] Read more.
This study analyzes the natural and social factors influencing the emergence and publicization of the invasive status of a fast-growing bush, gorse (Ulex europaeus), by comparison between countries on a global scale. We used documents collected on the web in a standardized way. The results show that in all the countries studied, there are several public statuses attributed to gorse. The invasive status is the one that is most shared. The other most frequently encountered status are those of noxious weed, and those of which are economically useful. The invasive status is publicized in nearly all countries, including those where gorse is almost absent. We quantified the publicization of the invasive gorse status of gorse by an indicator with 5 levels, and then performed a multivariate analysis that combines natural and social explanatory variables. The results lead us to propose the concept of invasive niche, which is the set of natural and social parameters that allow a species to be considered invasive in a given socio-ecosystem Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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Open AccessArticle
Genetic Data Suggest Multiple Introductions of the Lionfish (Pterois miles) into the Mediterranean Sea
Diversity 2019, 11(9), 149; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11090149 - 27 Aug 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
Widespread reports over the last six years confirm the establishment of lionfish (Pterois miles) populations in the eastern Mediterranean. Accumulated knowledge on lionfish invasions in the western Atlantic Ocean has shown that it is a successful invader and can have negative impacts on [...] Read more.
Widespread reports over the last six years confirm the establishment of lionfish (Pterois miles) populations in the eastern Mediterranean. Accumulated knowledge on lionfish invasions in the western Atlantic Ocean has shown that it is a successful invader and can have negative impacts on native species, indirect ecological repercussions and economic effects on local human societies. Here we analysed genetic sequences of lionfish from Cyprus as well as data from the whole distribution of the species, targeting the mtDNA markers cytochrome c oxidase subunit 1 (COI) and the control region (CR). Our results reflect a pattern of repeated introductions into the Mediterranean from the northern Red Sea and a secondary spread of this species west to Rhodes and Sicily. Presented results agree with previously published studies highlighting the genetic similarity with individuals from the northern Red Sea. Nevertheless, some individuals from Cyprus, in addition to those coming via the Suez Canal, were genetically similar to fish from the Indian Ocean, indicating genetic homogeneity among populations of P. miles across its current distribution, possibly facilitated by the ornamental fish trade and/or transport through ballast water. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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Open AccessArticle
An Alien Invader is the Cause of Homogenization in the Recipient Ecosystem: A Simulation-Like Approach
Diversity 2019, 11(9), 146; https://doi.org/10.3390/d11090146 - 26 Aug 2019
Cited by 8
Abstract
Biotic homogenization is an expected effect of biological invasions. Invasive alien species typically show great adaptability to a wide range of environmental conditions and may expand into different habitats, thus reducing the dissimilarity among the recipient communities. We tested this assumption by analyzing [...] Read more.
Biotic homogenization is an expected effect of biological invasions. Invasive alien species typically show great adaptability to a wide range of environmental conditions and may expand into different habitats, thus reducing the dissimilarity among the recipient communities. We tested this assumption by analyzing a comprehensive database (78 species × 229 samples) collected between 2012 and 2017 in the marine protected area of Portofino (NW Italy), where Caulerpa cylindracea, one of the worst invaders in the Mediterranean Sea, exhibits high substratum cover at depths between 1 m and 45 m in 14 different communities (identified according to the European Nature Information System EUNIS for habitat classification). Five samples for each of the eight depth zones (i.e., 5 m, 10 m, 15 m, 20 m, 25 m, 30 m, 35 m, and 40 m) were randomly re-sampled from the comprehensive database to produce a dataset of 67 species × 40 samples. Then, a second dataset of 66 species × 40 samples was simulated by excluding Caulerpa cylindracea. Both re-sampled datasets underwent multivariate analysis. In the presence of C. cylindracea, the overall similarity among samples was higher, thus indicating homogenization of the rocky reef communities of Portofino Marine Protected Area. Continued monitoring activity is needed to understand and assess the pattern and extent of C. cylindracea’s inclusion in the recipient ecosystems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biological Invasions 2020 Horizon)
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