Methods for monitoring invertebrate response to vertebrate eradication

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ISBN: 978-2-8317-1961-0
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Methods for monitoring invertebrate response to vertebrate eradication

Once an island vertebrate eradication is deemed successful, it is typically assumed that ecosystem recovery will follow. To date, most post-eradication monitoring focuses on the recovery of key threatened or charismatic species, such as seabirds. Little attention has been given to monitoring and quantifying the response of invertebrate communities. Rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus), house mice (Mus musculus), and ship rats (Rattus rattus) impacted sub-Antarctic Macquarie Island for over 140 years, with wide ranging ecosystem impacts. In 2014, the eradication of rabbits and rodents was o?cially declared successful. To determine whether management objectives are being met, we are investigating the response of invertebrate communities to pest eradication, using both historic data and contemporary surveys to track changes over space and time. To achieve this, we have developed a survey strategy that is e?ective and e?cient. Here we report on the merits of utilising a variety of invertebrate trapping methodologies to establish current baselines for future invertebrate monitoring. We identify sampling techniques that are most e?ective for speci?c groups of taxa, particularly those of interest to post-eradication monitoring, and how the implementation of such methods can improve and facilitate e?ective post-eradication monitoring of invertebrates.

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