Invasive Species

The Indian, or common, myna, Acridotheres tristis (Sturnidae: Passeriformes: Aves) was introduced throughout New Zealand in the 1870?s by locals and Acclimatisation Societies (Bull et al., 1985). Birds subsequently established in most of the North Island, with high densities present in the urban and suburban areas. Common mynas continue to flourish in the northern and central North Island, and are usually more abundant than most native birds in gardens and parks (LCR, 2008)

National or Territory Invasive Species Strategies and Action Plans (NISSAP) are a critical document to ensure invasive species management is coordinated within a country or territory and that the different sectors involved with invasive species management are working together toward the same goals. NISSAP are essential to show political will for managing invasive species and are looked upon favourably by funding bodies.

Early Detection and Rapid Response (EDRR) systems are the first line of defence against invasive species once they have penetrated national or inter-island biosecurity systems. For these systems to be effective, a plan is required to coordinate the responsible agencies and ensure both the systems and equipment to address the detected species are in place prior to the response. Several countries have developed these plans recently, which are available on the Battler Resource Base. SPREP thanks James Stanford, who drafted the text for this guide.

The invasive battler has a difficult job. Many of the management solutions for invasive species require a broad base of information to determine the best way to approach an issue and determine if the approach is feasible. Likely questions a battler will face are: what is that species? How did it get here and where will it go next? Is it a risk to our environment or other important national asset? Where else is this species found and what did they do about it?

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.

The intentional and unintentional transfer of species from one water body to another around the world has boomed in recent decades. Many seas and regions have been invaded by a high number of non-native species. Some of these species thrive in their new habitats, out-competing native species and changing