Invasive species

Invasive alien plants and animals are known for their disruption of ecosystems and threat to biodiversity. This book highlights their major impact on human health. This includes not only direct effects through contact with the species via bites, wounds and disease, but also indirect effects caused by changes induced in ecosystems by invasive species, such as more water hyacinth increasing mosquito levels and thereby the potential for malaria.

The importance of vector and pest control in disasters and emergencies

The WHO Guide to sanitation in natural disasters (Assar, 1971) summarized the essential aspects of environmental health management in disasters. These included the provision of emergency water and sanitation services; the burial or cremation of the dead; vector and pest control; food hygiene; and the assessment of the danger of epidemics following emergencies and disasters, etc. Thirty years later these aspects remain essential, though the needs, challenges and opportunities are greater.

BBC website news article - Flood hit South Indian state of Kerala 11 people died of leptospirosis; After floods expect to see water-borne diseases like cholera, typhoid, diarrhoea, hepatitis and rat fever

With the wide acceptance of forest?protection policies in the developing world comes a requirement for clear demonstrations of how deforestation may erode human well?being and economies. For centuries, it has been believed that forests provide protection against flooding. However, such claims have given rise to a heated polemic, and broad?scale quantitative evidence of the possible role of forests in flood protection has not been forthcoming.

Rodents are a key pest to agricultural and rural island communities of the South Pacific, but there is limited information of their impact on the crops and livelihoods of small-scale farmers. The rodent pest community is known, but the type and scales of damage to different crops on different islands are unknown. Knowledge about rodent pest management in other geographical regions may not be directly transferable to the Pacific region. Many studies on islands have largely focussed on the eradication of rodents from uninhabited islands for conservation benefits.

Invasive alien mammals are the major driver of biodiversity loss and ecosystem degradation on islands. Over the past three decades, invasive mammal eradication from islands has become one of society's most powerful tools for preventing extinction of insular endemics and restoring insular ecosystems. As practitioners tackle larger islands for restoration, three factors will heavily influence success and outcomes: the degree of local support, the ability to mitigate for non-target impacts, and the ability to eradicate non-native species more cost-effectively.

The aim of this toolkit is to provide a clear, user-friendly guide to the application of economic approaches and tools to invasive species. It addresses the issues associated with identifying the factors which cause the spread of invasives, incorporating consideration of invasive species into economic planning and