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Avoiding the Invasive Trap: Policies for Aquatic Non-Indigenous Plant Management

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Many aquatic invasive species (AIS) management programs are doing important work on preventing non-indigenous species movement to our wild places. Attitudes and perspectives on aquatic non-indigenous species and their management by ecologists and the public are fundamentally a question of human values. Despite eloquent philosophical writings on treatment of non-indigenous species, management agency rhetoric on 'invasive' species usually degenerates to a good versus evil language, often with questionable results and lost conservation dollars. We assess and learn from an established AIS program. We discuss an ethic framework and operational directives to minimise the trap of a binary classification of species into bad or good, and we advocate for a principled pragmatic approach to minimise conflicts. We make a case for not labelling species and instead focusing on managing nuisance conditions and protecting ecosystem health.
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Keywords: Invasive species; indigenous species; management policy; non-native aquatic plants

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: April 1, 2019

More about this publication?
  • Environmental Values is an international peer-reviewed journal that brings together contributions from philosophy, economics, politics, sociology, geography, anthropology, ecology and other disciplines, which relate to the present and future environment of human beings and other species. In doing so we aim to clarify the relationship between practical policy issues and more fundamental underlying principles or assumptions.

    Environmental Values has a Journal Impact Factor (2018) of 1.933. 5 Year Impact Factor: 2.493.
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