About Us

We have a proud history of standing up to protect Australia's incredible natural world from the multiple threats of dangerous pest animals, weeds and diseases.

Our Wins

As the only environmental NGO with a national focus on invasive species, the Invasive Species Council is tackling one of Australia’s most important and difficult conservation challenges. Invasive species threaten more biodiversity than any other factor apart from habitat loss and the majority of animal extinctions have been due to invasive species.

Australia needs stronger laws, policies and programs to prevent new invaders, and to eradicate, contain or control existing invaders. In working to close the gaps in Australia’s biosecurity net, ISC has the potential to make a huge difference to conservation of Australia’s unique wildlife and stunning landscapes.

Our achievements to date are in the form of bans on high-risk species, important policy reforms or steps on the way and greater public support for reform. Here are highlights of these achievements.

High risk invasive species

Prevention

Preventing the introduction of new invasive organisms is the most effective and cost-effective approach to biosecurity. ISC advocates for policy reforms to prevent harmful new invaders and campaigns to prevent release and spread of particularly high-risk species.

Risk assessment:

Bumblebees:
Giant reed:
Others:

Eradication

Eradicating species once they have established is challenging but can be well worth a substantial short-term investment to prevent long-term biodiversity harm and much greater costs in the future. Apart from island eradication programs, most have been focused on agricultural threats. ISC has been a strong advocate to increase eradication efforts on environmental threats.
Red fire ants:
Yellow crazy ants:
Mexican bean tree (Cecropia spp.):

Containment and control

Gamba grass:

Feral deer:

Tilapia:

Climate change and invasive species

Some of the greatest harms of climate change will arise from invasive species that benefit from new weather patterns and human actions. ISC has been at the forefront of raising awareness about threatening synergies between climate change and invasive species and the need for climate change adaptation programs to focus on invasive species.
Weedy biofuels:
Corridors and invasive species:
Awareness raising:

Recreational hunting

The rising influence of recreational hunting lobby groups in Australia is detrimental for feral animal policy and programs because they oppose effective control of prized ‘game animals’ (particularly deer), promote release of new invasive animals (eg. game birds) and divert resources from effective control programs. ISC has been influential in exposing these risks and campaigning to reduce their influence on policy.
Rejection of NSW Bill to promote hunting:
Defeat of proposal for recreational hunting in national parks and abolishment of NSW Game Council:
Feral animal control awareness:

Weed management

Because of major gaps in Australia’s complex and inconsistent system of weed laws, the majority of environmental weed threats are unregulated. ISC has been working to promote a national approach, which would benefit both the environment and industry, and has also promoted reforms in some states.
Recognition of weed law gaps:
More resources:
Action on particular weed threats:

National law and institutional reform

ISC has been the main conservation advocate for invasive species reforms at a federal level, where biosecurity is mostly administered by the agricultural department. ISC’s challenge has been to persuade the government to take environmental threats more seriously, to implement an independent biosecurity authority with an expert biosecurity commission, and reform institutions and processes to engage with the environmental sector.

National inquiries and reviews:
Quarantine loophole:
Engagement:

Awareness raising

ISC has been the main conservation advocate for invasive species reforms at a federal level, where biosecurity is mostly administered by the agricultural department. ISC’s challenge has been to persuade the government to take environmental threats more seriously, to implement an independent biosecurity authority with an expert biosecurity commission, and reform institutions and processes to engage with the environmental sector.

Coordination and awareness within the conservation sector:
Public education:
International:
Topics:about ISC