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Home / First Comprehensive List of Non-Native Species Established in Three Major Regions of the United States

First Comprehensive List of Non-Native Species Established in Three Major Regions of the United States

Provider Citation: 

DOI. United States Geological Survey.

Publication Date: 
2018

Invasive species are a subset of non-native (or alien) species, and knowing what species are non-native to a region is a first step to managing invasive species. People have been compiling non-native and invasive species lists ever since these species started causing harm, yet national non-native species lists are neither universal, nor common. Non-native species lists serve diverse purposes: watch lists for preventing invasions, inventory and monitoring lists for research and modeling, regulatory lists for species control, and nonregulatory lists for raising awareness. This diversity of purpose and the lists’ variation in geographic scope make compiling comprehensive lists of established (or naturalized) species for large regions difficult. However, listing what species are non-native in an area helps measure Essential Biodiversity Variables for invasive species monitoring and mount an effective response to established non-native species. In total, 1,166 authoritative sources were reviewed to compile the first comprehensive non-native species list for three large regions of the United States: Alaska, Hawaii, and the conterminous United States (lower 48 States). The list contains 11,344 unique names: 598 taxa for Alaska, 5,848 taxa for Hawaii, and 6,675 taxa for the conterminous United States.

The list is available to the public from U.S. Geological Survey ScienceBase, and the intent, though not a guarantee, is to update the list as non-native species become established in, or are eliminated from, the United States. The list has been used to annotate non-native species occurrence records in the U.S. Geological Survey all-taxa mapping application, Biodiversity Information Serving Our Nation (BISON).

Open-File Report 2018-1156, 15 p., https://doi.org/10.3133/ofr20181156.