There have been many well-publicized cases of invasive species of plants and animals, often introduced unintentionally but sometimes on purpose, causing widespread ecological havoc. Examples of such alien invasions include pernicious weeds such as Japanese knotweed, an introduced garden ornamental which can grow through concrete, the water hyacinth which has choked tropical waterways, and many introduced animals which have out-competed and displaced local fauna. 

This book addresses the broader context of invasive and exotic species, in terms of the perceived threats and environmental concerns which surround alien species and ecological invasions. As a result of unprecedented scales of environmental change, combined with rapid globalisation, the mixing of cultures and diversity, and fears over biosecurity and bioterrorism, the known impacts of particular invasions have been catastrophic. However, as several chapters show, reactions to some exotic species, and the justifications for interventions in certain situations, including biological control by introduced natural enemies, rest uncomfortably with social reactions to ethnic cleansing and persecution perpetrated across the globe. The role of democracy in deciding and determining environmental policy is another emerging issue. In an increasingly multicultural society this raises huge questions of ethics and choice. At the same time, in order to redress major ecological losses, the science of reintroduction of native species has also come to the fore, and is widely accepted by many in nature conservation. However, with questions of where and when, and with what species or even species analogues, reintroductions are acceptable, the topic is hotly debated. Again, it is shown that many decisions are based on values and perceptions rather than objective science. Including a wide range of case studies from around the world, his book raises critical issues to stimulate a much wider debate.

part |2 pages

Part I Setting the Scene

chapter 1|16 pages

Balancing Species History, Human Culture and Scientific Insight: Introduction and Overview

ByIan D. Rotherham, Robert A. Lambert

chapter 2|18 pages

Xenophobia or Conservation: Some Human Dimensions of Invasive Alien Species

ByJeffrey A. McNeeley

part |2 pages

Part II Attitudes and Perceptions

chapter 3|16 pages

Over Here: American Animals in Britain

ByPeter Coates

chapter 9|16 pages

Anekeitaxonomy: Botany, Place and Belonging

ByMatthew K. Chew

part |2 pages

Part III Case Studies and Case Histories

chapter 12|16 pages

Public Perception of Invasive Alien Species in Mediterranean Europe

ByFrancesca Gherardi

chapter 13|20 pages

The Human Dimensions of Invasive Plants in Tropical Africa

ByPierre Binggeli

chapter 14|12 pages

The Rise and Fall of Japanese Knotweed?

ByJohn Bailey

chapter 16|16 pages

Factors Affecting People’s Responses to Invasive Species Management

ByPaul H. Gobster

chapter 18|12 pages

A View from Continental Europe: The Case Study of Prunus serotina in France in Comparison with Other Invasives

ByAurélie Javelle, Bernard Kalaora, Guillaume Decocq

chapter 19|12 pages

Native or Alien? The Case of the Wild Boar in Britain

ByMartin Goulding

chapter 20|12 pages

Exotic and Invasive Species: An Economic Perspective

ByCraig Osteen, Michael Livingston

part |2 pages

Part IV The Way Ahead: Conclusions and Challenges

chapter 24|12 pages

Good Science, Good History and Pragmatism: Managing the Way Ahead

ByIan D. Rotherham, Robert A. Lambert