Apia, Samoa

This document is part of a technical report series on conservation projects funded by the Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) and the Conservation International Pacific Islands Program (CI-Pacific). The main purpose of this series is to disseminate project findings and successes to a broader audience of conservation professionals in the Pacific, along with interested members of the public and students. The reports are being prepared on an ad-hoc basis as projects are completed and written up.

While eradication projects on large islands require substantial funding and a high level of technical and logistical support, projects on small islands are much simpler and can achieve success with much less funding and outside assistance. The Pacific has thousands of such islands that can contribute to significant biodiversity outcomes. The purpose of this guide is to assist the practitioner in removing invasive rodents from small islands (less than 20 hectares) where access to all parts of the island is possible.

The presence of invasive species generally leads to negative impacts, some perhaps irreversible, and the economic costs from the impacts and their management can be substantial and long-lasting. Efforts to understand the extent of damages caused by invasive species are slowly gaining momentum globally; however, in many countries, efforts are only beginning. This guide will assist Pacific island practitioners to use the costs that result from invasive species incursions to gain support to fund prevention, management, restoration, research and outreach.

Dealing with invasive species is a huge job. Invasive species are everyone's responsibility, but people can only help if they are aware and know what they can change to make a difference. This guide is designed to support your creation of cost-effective communications campaigns to reduce the impact of invasive species in Pacific Island nations. Thanks to Steve Menzies and the Pasifika Collective for assisting with the design of the campaign, assisting and advising SPREP through the process, and preparing the draft text for this guide.

Invasive rodents are successful colonists of many ecosystems around the world, and can have very flexible foraging behaviours that lead to differences in spatial ranges and seasonal demography among individuals and islands. Understanding such spatial and temporal information is critical to plan rodent eradication operations, and a detailed examination of an island’s rat population can expand our knowledge about possible variation in behaviour and demography of invasive rats in general.

Pacific island ecosystems make up one of the world’s biodiversity hotspots, with high levels of endemism. However, Pacific islands areparticularly vulnerable to invasive species; because of their isolation and relatively recent human occupation, native species have not evolved to cope with the impacts of predators, herbivores...