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The negative ecological impacts of a globally introduced species decrease with time since introduction

Abstract : While there is a long-history of biological invasions and their ecological impacts have been widely demonstrated across taxa and ecosystems, our knowledge on the temporal dynamic of these impacts remains extremely limited. Using a meta-analytic approach, we investigated how the ecological impacts of non-native brown trout (Salmo trutta), a model species with a 170-year-long and well-documented history of intentional introductions across the globe, vary with time since introduction. We first observed significant negative ecological impacts immediately after the species introduction. Second, we found that the negative ecological impacts decrease with time since introduction and that the average ecological impacts become nonsignificant more than one century after introduction. This pattern was consistent across other ecological contexts (i.e., geographical location, levels of biological organization, and methodological approach). However, overall negative ecological impacts were more pronounced at the individual and population levels and in experimental studies. While the mechanisms leading to this decrease remain to be determined, our results indicate that rapid response of native organisms (e.g. adaptation, but also local extinction) may play an important role in this dynamic. Changes in native species traits and local extinction can have important conservation implications. Therefore, we argue that the decline of the negative ecological impacts over time should not be used as an argument to neglect the negative impacts of biological invasions
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Submitted on : Tuesday, August 7, 2018 - 8:05:26 PM
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Libor Zavorka, Mathieu Buoro, Julien Cucherousset. The negative ecological impacts of a globally introduced species decrease with time since introduction. Global Change Biology, Wiley, 2018, 24 (9), 10 p. ⟨10.1111/gcb.14323⟩. ⟨hal-01855437⟩



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