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  • Invasive Alien Species cumulative impact

    Patterns of invasion and pressure across Europe ecosystems

    The distribution and the magnitude of potential pressure by IAS on terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems were assessed in a recent JRC study, for 66 IAS of policy concern across 27 European countries. Authors computed a spatial indicator that accounts for the number of IAS present in an area and the extent of the ecosystems affected; for each ecosystem, the pattern of invasions in different biogeographical regions was also examined.

    Disproportionally greater invasion was found in the Atlantic region, followed by Continental and Mediterranean regions, possibly related to historical patterns of first introductions. Urban and freshwater ecosystems result the most invaded, followed by forest and woodland.

    The study showed that the consequences caused by the presence of several IAS in the same area could be more severe than the sum of each species impact.

    The results obtained show that invasive alien species could exert high pressure and impact on terrestrial and freshwater ecosystems across large areas of Europe. Knowledge advance on these aspects is crucial to support species prioritization, adoption and implementation of effective management measures.

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