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Conserv Biol. 2008 Jun;22(3):551-61. doi: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2008.00953.x.

Managing aquatic species of conservation concern in the face of climate change and invasive species.

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Department of Zoology and Physiology, Department 3166, 1000 East University Avenue, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY 82071, USA.


The difficult task of managing species of conservation concern is likely to become even more challenging due to the interaction of climate change and invasive species. In addition to direct effects on habitat quality, climate change will foster the expansion of invasive species into new areas and magnify the effects of invasive species already present by altering competitive dominance, increasing predation rates, and enhancing the virulence of diseases. In some cases parapatric species may expand into new habitats and have detrimental effects that are similar to those of invading non-native species. The traditional strategy of isolating imperiled species in reserves may not be adequate if habitat conditions change beyond historic ranges or in ways that favor invasive species. The consequences of climate change will require a more active management paradigm that includes implementing habitat improvements that reduce the effects of climate change and creating migration barriers that prevent an influx of invasive species. Other management actions that should be considered include providing dispersal corridors that allow species to track environmental changes, translocating species to newly suitable habitats where migration is not possible, and developing action plans for the early detection and eradication of new invasive species.

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