From Giant Hogweed to feral cats Invasive species need to be stopped. Defining the Impact/Activity: Invasive species are species that have been introduced to an ecosystem that affect the habitats and bioregions they invade economically, ecologically, socially, and culturally in a negative manner. This paper will describe the intentional and non-intentional causes, ecological, social, cultural, and economic impacts, the solutions, and the ways to prevent invasive species. Causes- Unintentional:
Many invasive species were introduced into other ecosystems when the industrial and human transportation industries took off. Many invasive species were introduced through trading, travel and tourism, transport, release of ballast waters from ships, escape from fish farms, openings of canals and waterways, use of live bait, escape from aquariums or water gardens, escape from live food fish trade, recreational boating and movement of equipment and gear, gardening, seed mixtures, escaped pets, and fire wood.
Many present day invasive species were introduced through human imprudence and negligence, like the spiny water flea, big head, silver, and black carp, sea lamprey, round goby, fanwort, bass, pike, and zebra mussels. However, many introductions of invasive species were intentional. Causes- Intentional: Although most invasive species were unintentionally brought into an ecosystem, many were 100% intentional, granting the consequences were unknown. For example, the Giant Hogweed was introduced into Canada from Asia because it was considered decorative.
Out of all the species that have ever existed since the beginning of time, 98% of them are extinct (Facts). There are an estimated 5-10 million species that exist currently and only 1.5 million have been identified (Sherry, 2). Scientists classify species into six different groups: plants, animals, insects, algae, fungi, and microorganisms (Todays Situation). In the tropical rainforest alone, most ...
However, Giant Hogweed has a watery sap that is like acid to human skin and if it gets into the eyes can cause permanent or temporary blindness. Other invasive species are the dandelion, purple loosestrife, and English ivy. Some species are introduced for ornamental properties, economic gain, cultural beliefs, improving environmental problems, making an area feel more like another, habitat restoration activities, authorized fish stocking, biological control of pests, and releasing pets that someone can’t or won’t look after. (Boa constrictors, feral cats, feral dogs) Impacts- Ecological:
Invasive species have caused the extinction and endangerment of hundreds of native species; they cause irreversible changes to habitats, kill and crowd out other species through predation, parasitism, disease, and competition. They also alter ecological processes such as water, nutrient, and energy cycles. They can also breed with native species to cause hybrid species. They can bring new diseases that native species can’t fight. The effects are “immense, insidious, and usually irreversible. ” (https://wwf. panda. org/about_our_earth/species/problems/invasive_species/) Impacts- Social:
Along with dangers to the environment invasive species can be very disruptive of our social and recreational areas. Invasive species like the snakehead fish, boa constrictor, red fire ants, and the African Rock Python (a new snake found in the Florida everglades and expected to become invasive) all are potentially dangerous to humans. Aquatic invaders can make recreation like swimming and boating difficult, and sometimes camping, hiking, and biking can be made impossible by alien species. They can also invade in parks and public places and decrease public appeal.
Impacts- Economical: Along with the social and Ecological impacts, it costs a lot of money in damages, preventions, and solutions relating to invasive species. The damages due to invasive species costs the world $1. 7 trillion every year, in the Great Lakes Zebra mussels cost $3-$7. 5 billion in damages every year, and cost forest and agriculture industries in Canada $7. 3 million, they also decrease property value and reduce the value of commercial and recreational fishing. Impacts- Cultural: An affect that is not widely recognized is cultural impacts.
The socio-cultural impacts of tourism described here are the effects on host communities of direct and indirect relations with tourists, and of interaction with the tourism industry. For a variety of reasons, host communities often are the weaker party in interactions with their guests and service providers, leveraging any influence they might have. These influences are not always apparent, as ...
Many aboriginal tribes lose the medicinal plants and cultural materials needed in cultural practices. Many invasive species alter culturally significant sites and take away food sources, some native species vital to cultural practices are killed with non-target pesticide contamination. Solutions- Prevention: There is no simple solution to invasive species; one of the most common characteristics of invasive species is their fast growth, rapid reproduction, high dispersal ability, and high adaptability, this makes many invasive species very hard to eradicate.
Because of this the main solution for invasive species is preventing their spread. One of the best ways to prevent the introduction of indigenous species is to be cautious of the pathways. For example, people should clean their boats thoroughly before moving it to different bodies of water. Dredging, dams, traps, electrical fields, mechanical barriers, trenching, and sticky bands are some other good ways to prevent there spread. Solutions: Because of many invasive species growth, reproduction, dispersal, and adaptability rates getting rid of them can be very difficult.
Some methods people have used are; mechanical harvesting, hand-pulling plants, cutting and destroying infested material, poison, use of a living organisms, and pesticides. However, with many of these species leaving one pregnant female of one solitary plant can lead to a re-infestation. Removing invasive species is easier said then done. Conclusion: In conclusion, invasive species are a very negative affect on the biodiversity of our ecosystems and need to be exterminated.