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Old 03-18-2011, 07:20 AM   #1
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Default Embracing Invasives = Galapagos

I'm not sure if this is the best forum for this thread, so if Admin feels that there is a better one, please feel free to move it.

From “Science” 18 March 2011; V. 331 (6023):1383-1384.

"Much of the fauna and flora of the Galápagos islands is unique, but introduced species are taking over. Conservationists have spent the past 50 years attempting to remove introduced species and restore the islands' flora and fauna to prehuman days. There have been some successes: Goats have been eliminated from several islands. But the effort to eradicate blackberry, guava, and 34 other invasive plant species has cost more than $1 million and succeeded in eliminating just four. The most invasive and problematic of these aliens—blackberry and guava—have developed into forests where nothing else grows, birds cannot nest, and even insects are rare. The main reason for this failure is that invasive plants are far more competitive than native plants. Seeds of invasive species, such as blackberries, are long-lived and accumulate in high numbers in the soil, and restoration activities can have the paradoxical effect of stimulating them to germinate. Now, a group of maverick ecologists is promoting the idea that the addition of nonnative species to natives in a region leads to "novel" or "hybrid" ecosystems that have ecological value and may be worthy of conservation."
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Old 03-18-2011, 01:51 PM   #2
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A 'hybrid' ecosystem may be acceptable, but if non-native species cause the complete elimination of a native species, then we have a loss which is not acceptable.

That said, a restoration biologist in New Jersey made the lament on a TV report that they may have won a battle (against invasives) but that they are losing the war. We ultimately will have no choice in many areas but to accept the 'unacceptable'.
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Old 03-18-2011, 07:09 PM   #3
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Strange, if...
Quote:
Originally Posted by suunto View Post
The most invasive and problematic of these aliens—blackberry and guava—have developed into forests where nothing else grows, birds cannot nest, and even insects are rare.
...that they would say...
Quote:
Originally Posted by suunto View Post
...that the addition of nonnative species to natives in a region leads to "novel" or "hybrid" ecosystems that have ecological value and may be worthy of conservation."
I don't see the value. ~sigh~
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Old 03-18-2011, 07:15 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by benj1 View Post
We ultimately will have no choice in many areas but to accept the 'unacceptable'.
Hopefully, those on this forum will not have to accept them on our own properties even if, ultimately they are here to stay in the general ecosystem.
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