OT: New threat to our way of life: giant pythons

viktoras didziulis viktoras at ekoinf.net
Sun Feb 24 08:01:53 EST 2008

Hi Mark,

invasive alien species are an increasing problem globally. Species that 
were introduced deliberately or accidentally into new areas now have 
more chances to adopt and survive also because of the global climate 
change. Not all species are as bad, some are endangered, but some are 
nasty indeed causing damage to natural ecosystems, human health or 
economies. For example there are around 10 000 species like this in 
Europe that counts to 45 000 distinct introduction events. If you are 
interested in this topic you can visit www.europe-aliens.org and take a 
look at the poster presented in the conference  "Biological invasions in 
Europe and the DAISIE initiative - current threats and future 
perspectives" at
http://ekoinf.net/daisie/poster_easd_overview.ppt, ~3 Mb.

Actually this is not a big OT, because Revolution was used extensively 
and intensively to create the European Alien Species Database and data 
exploration tools to be released for public access in 2009 (database is 
still being polished, besides scientists wanted to make all their 
relevant publications before the database content is completely 
exposed). I will be taking that poster to at least 3 other conferences, 
so Revolution will get its exposure there too :-).

Some facts on the best known aliens... Freshwater bivalve mollusk 
Dreisenna polymorpha caused huge losses in the USA by clogging water 
intake/release pipes and other submerged structures in Great Lakes. A 
tiny crustacean Cercopagis pengoi upon its arrival to the Baltic sea 
caused what was called "nets plaque" nearly destroying marine coastal 
fishery business in a few European countries at the turn of XX / XXI 
centuries. Xilophagous mollusk Teredo navalis destroyed nearly all 
wooden constructions in San Francisco bay in the beginning of XX century 
causing loses as high as 200 000 000 dollars in just one year. And very 
recently documented new invader Mnemiopsis leyidyi is a major threat to 
fish resources in the Baltic sea, because it preys upon juvenile fish 
and has no natural enemies. This really beautiful creature already 
caused collapse of fisheries when it invaded the Black sea some time ago.

More facts (from other projects):

and some videos (not mine):

All the best!

Mark Wieder wrote:
> No on-topic content, but it's Friday on my planet and I just had to share 
> this gem:
> http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/02/21/MNABV5PP3.DTL

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