Introduction Invasion by nonindigenous species has been recognized as second only to loss of habitat and landscape fragmentation as a threat to global biodiversity ( Walker & Steffen 1997 ). The economic impact of these species is a major concern throughout the world. For example, an estimated 50,000 nonindigenous species established in the United States cause major environmental damage and economic losses that total over an estimated U.S.$125 billion per year ( Pimentel et al. 2000 ). Management and control of nonindigenous species is perhaps the biggest challenge that conservation biologists will face in the next few decades. The six papers in this special section and these introductory remarks consider the role that population biology can play in understanding invasive species through life‐history studies, demographic models, genetic considerations, and knowledge of the ecology and evolution of both invasive and native species in a community context. Studies of genetic diversity and the potential for rapid evolution of invasive species may provide useful insights into what causes species to become invasive. Life‐history studies may also lead to predictions of which species are likely to become serious pests or identify critical life‐history stages during which control will be most successful. Population
Conservation Biology – Wiley
Published: Feb 1, 2003
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