Climate change and invasive species

The stress imposed by climate change is likely to increase the susceptibility of species to invasive animals. Increased fox predation on pygmy possums in the Australian Alps is an example of this. Photo: Credit Australian Alps collection - Parks Australia (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The stress imposed by climate change is likely to increase the susceptibility of species to invasive animals. Increased fox predation on pygmy possums in the Australian Alps is an example of this. Photo: Credit Australian Alps collection – Parks Australia (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Global warming will create a world of many losers, but there will be winners as well. Native species killed or stressed by climate change will all too often be replaced by weeds and feral animals or infected by exotic diseases.

All the floods, storms, cyclones, fires and droughts predicted by climate experts will speed up invasion.

Human responses to climate change will also worsen the threat of invasive species. Some proposed energy crop species (biofuels) are invasive and when agriculture shifts and adapts because of changing climate patterns, it will inevitably cause new invasive problems.

One of the best ways to assist nature to adapt to inevitable climate change is to reduce the threats of invasive species. ISC works to promote reforms to reduce these synergistic threats.

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