Endemism Predicts Intrinsic Vulnerability to Nonindigenous Species on Islands.
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Abstract: While numerous efforts have been made to identify and quantify factors controlling invasibility of biological communities, less attention has been given to analyzing the expressions of vulnerability to nonindigenous species (NIS). Using the International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources Red List database for birds, mammals, and amphibians and the Invasive Species Specialist Group global invasive species database as sources of information, we developed a new indicator for the relative intrinsic vulnerability of islands to NIS. It was calculated from the residuals to the global relationship between the impact of NIS and their exposure to the islands. The impact of NIS was expressed as the proportion of indigenous species threatened by NIS, and the exposure was the number of invasive NIS per number of native species. The residuals corresponded to the variability in impact, about 60%, that was not explained by exposure. The proportion of endemic species on the islands was positively correlated with the relative intrinsic vulnerability and explained about 60% of its variability. The robust relationship between endemism and intrinsic vulnerability reinforces the role of long-term isolation for the fate of island indigenous species to biological invasions and is useful in identifying vulnerable environments without having a specific invader in mind.
|Research areas and keywords||
Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY
|Publication status||Published - 2009|