Literature review of aquatic invasive species management in the Great Lakes region
Honours Bachelor of Environmental Studies
DisciplineNatural Resources Management
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Invasive species are foreign organisms which out-compete and take over new landscapes and are ranked as one of the most destructive forms of habitat degradation (McCormick et al. 2009). Aquatic invasive species specifically have the potential to disrupt not only ecosystem services, but the commercial industries, and recreational activities as well. The great lakes, located between Canada and the United States, are one of the largest sources of fresh water which supports the majority of North American populations. These lakes have been subject to numerous invasive species, with new species constantly threatening to invade. The purpose of this study is to assess the current level of management of invasive species from the bordering provinces and states. A literature review was conducted focusing on three species as case studies; the round goby (Neogobius melanostomus) and Asian clam (Corbicula fluminea), species which are currently established in the great lakes, and Asian carp (Ctenopharyngodon idella, Hypophthalmichthys molitrix, Hypophthalmichthys nobilis, Mylopharyngodon piceus) a newly threating species coming from the United States. The established species were found to have the greatest number of publications focused on their physical (round goby) and chemical (Asian clam) control, with little publications found on their prevention or eradication. Asian carp management was centered around their prevention, with little to no studies found on control or eradication methods. The final assessment on the level of invasive species management within the great lakes, based on further research of the practicality of each method, was relatively satisfactory given current states. The suggested improvement includes the focus on creating cohesive international policies, as well as the improving public outreach programs.