Has anyone else heard about the "monster" goldfish discovered in Lake Tahoe? Researchers think the goldfish was introduced by someone who dumped their aquarium in the lake. This story reminded me of an invasive species problem in upstate New York, where I'm from. The "aliens" in the lakes up there are zebra mussels.
Are invasive species a problem in your area?
This is a great topic! I grew up in upstate NY so I'm familiar with the big zebra mussel problem. In the DC area, we have an invasion of snakehead fish in the Potomac. To try and help with the problem high-end restaurants have started serving them on their menus!
To hear about a different sort of "snake" causing problems, listen to our Science NetLinks podcast about Burmese pythons in the Everglades.
That was an interesting article about snakeheads. I hadn't realized they are such a problem in the area. Thank you for sharing!
Interesting, too, that the Burmese python problem in the Everglades is attributed to people releasing pets, just like the "monster" goldfish in Lake Tahoe.
I saw a new article from ScienceNOW about an invasive species that is having a positive effect on one ecosystem. In Cape Cod, the presence of green crabs is helping to recover the predominant plant in salt marshes. So, in some cases there can be unintentional benefits to invasions.
A new Science Update podcast takes a look at the giant snail invasion in South Florida. Giant East African land snails (up to eight inches long!) are eating plants and even buildings. They seek out calcium for their shells and will climb up walls to eat stucco!
Garlic Mustard ! It evidently contributes to decline of an indicator butterfly species http://www.cleveland.com/opinion/index.ssf/2013/05/got_garlic_mustard_kill_it_eli.html
I heard about this problem recently. Are you familiar with the Global Garlic Mustard Field Survey? It seems like a great citizen science opportunity for students and their families.
Asian Carp are native to eastern China. They were introduce into our eco system to as biological control in aquaculture ponds and wastewater treatment facilities. Biologists expect that Asian carp would disrupt the food chain that supports the native fish of the Ohio River basin. read more...West Virginia DNR - Wildlife Resources
A new ScienceNOW article explores the problem of invasive red lionfish from the Pacific Ocean eating coral reef fish off the Atlantic Coast and in the Caribbean Sea. Their spiky dorsal fins give them a striking look but are venomous, keeping local predators away. Researchers have also found that these lionfish are living at deeper depths and growing larger in this new habitat.