Wetland and Aquatic Research Center

Invasive Species

Research, monitoring, and technology development for containment or eradication of non-indigenous species that have potential to cause significant ecologic or economic damage and those that impact human health. Scientists test and develop methods to better detect invasive species, determine the likelihood of their spread and impact, report distribution to track their spread, methods to contain and control harmful invasive species, as well as means to restore ecosystems after control efforts. Recent emphasis has been on using advanced technologies such as remote sensing and genetics methods to develop species-specific detection and control tools for terrestrial and aquatic species, with recent focus on Asian carp, sea lamprey, and snakes. Includes studies on ecologic impacts, invasion biology, and basic life history to help determine risk and develop control strategies.
Filter Total Items: 47
Date published: April 4, 2019
Status: Active

Survey and Assessment of Live Food Markets as an Invasion Pathway

Live food markets may be a source of the increasing number of non-native wild invertebrate and fish species, like Asian swamp eels and snakeheads. USGS is surveying such markets around the United States to identify and document species that might be of concern if released live into the wild to assess if the live food market is a possible invasion pathway. 

Contacts: Leo Nico, Ph.D.
Date published: March 26, 2019
Status: Active

The Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Alert Risk Mapper (ARM)

The Nonindigenous Aquatic Species (NAS) program has developed a new tool, the NAS Alert Risk Mapper (ARM), to characterize waterbodies in the conterminous U.S. and Hawaii at potential risk of invasion from a new nonindigenous species sighting.

Date published: March 5, 2019
Status: Active

The Nonindigenous Aquatic Species Flood and Storm Tracker (FaST)

Storm-related flooding can lead to the potential spread of nonindigenous (or non-native) aquatic species into waterways they have not been seen in before. The USGS Nonindigenous Aquatic Species program has developed an innovative mapping tool to help natural resource managers with post-storm nonindigenous aquatic species detection and assessment efforts. 

Date published: February 28, 2019
Status: Active

Decision Analysis to Help Improve the Effectiveness of Invasive Plants Management

Melaleuca is an invasive tree that is highly problematic in the Everglades, threatening native wildlife and habitat. USGS is helping to improve management strategies for the invasive plant. 

Date published: February 28, 2019
Status: Completed

Fish Slam November 2018

In November 2018, USGS researchers joined partners in South Florida where they sampled freshwater bodies for non-native fishes. The bi-annual Fish Slam event helps monitor new introductions and document range expansion of known non-native fishes. 

Date published: February 27, 2019
Status: Active

Effects of Native and Non-native Fishes on Native Apple Snail Population Dynamics

The Florida apple snail is a critical component of the state's wetland food webs. USGS scientists assess the effects of native and non-native fishes on the native snail populations.

Contacts: Pamela J Schofield, Ph.D., Daniel Slone, Ph.D., Kristen Reaver, Philip C. Darby, Ph.D., Silvia M. Gutierre, Ph.D.
Date published: February 27, 2019
Status: Active

Development of a Quantitative Risk Assessment Tool to Predict Invasiveness of Non-native Freshwater Fishes in Everglades National Park

The introduction of non-native fishes is a problem across the United States, particularly in Florida. USGS scientists are developing a decision support tool to help natural resourece managers prioritize which species to focus prevention, detection, rapid response, and control efforts. 

Contacts: Pamela J Schofield, Ph.D., Daniel Slone, Ph.D., William F. Loftus, Jeff Kline
Date published: February 19, 2019
Status: Active

Risk Analysis of Invasive Freshwater Fishes in Hawaii and Micronesia

Invasive species threaten biodiversity around the world, especially on islands. USGS scientists are helping to identify fish species that have the greatest potential to invade the fresh waters of Microneisa. 

Date published: August 2, 2018
Status: Active

Integrating Science and Management for Optimal Prevention and Control of Invasive Nymphoides in Florida

Two invasive species of floating hearts, Nymphoides cristata and N. indica, are actively managed in Florida. A rare native species, N. humboldtiana, has been found in Florida and verified by molecular methods; this species is nearly indistinguishable from N. indica.

Date published: November 7, 2017
Status: Active

Fish Slam - November 2017

The Hunt For The Southernmost Snakehead. Thirty-one fishery biologists from eleven agencies participated in a two-day Fish Slam event. Thirty-five sites in Broward and Miami-Dade counties were sampled for non-native fishes.

Date published: August 1, 2017
Status: Active

Pilot Testing and Protocol Development of Apple Snail Suppression at Mandalay National Wildlife Refuge

The maculata apple snail (Pomacea maculata) has invaded many coastal and some inland areas in south Louisiana. Reports have indicated that the freshwater snails have significantly reduced the amount of submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) and floating leaved vegetation (FLV) available for waterfowl and other wildlife.

Date published: March 22, 2017
Status: Completed

Spring Fish Slam 2017 – Big Cypress

22-23 March 2017 - Ten teams of fishery biologists sampled 28 sites amid unexpected wildfires in the Big Cypress National Preserve over the two day period. On the second day a reporter from the Miami Herald accompanied a ground crew team.