30 January 2013 by James Webster
The UK government has recently announced that it will be banning the sale of five non-native aquatic plants; Water Fern, Parrots Feather, Floating Pennywort, Water Primrose and Australian swamp Stonecrop. This is a step in the right direction and will hopefully help stop the spread of these damaging plants, though I suspect it will depend on how this will be enforced. However these, as well as other non-native, species are already well established in areas and cause a great deal of damage to native flora and fauna. They can also be costly to control when well established.
I have seen the damage non-native species can cause to habitats in the UK in particular in aquatic environments. It is important that we stop the spread of non-native species and try to eradicate them where possible. Invasive species are a problem because they put additional pressure on native species which are already in decline from pressures such as habitat loss, fragmentation and climate change. Prompt treatment is always best if possible so I would recommend surveys of your landholdings to detect any non-native species and the formulation of an action plan if any are detected. For more information contact James Webster.
Non-native species do not only pose a threat to our natural heritage but are also a problem for aerodrome safeguarding. Canada Geese (Branta canadensis) pose a significant risk to aircraft. Originally introduced from North America their large size and their tendency to move about in large flocks at certain times of year means they are potentially very hazardous if located near an airport. This species can be controlled or dissuaded from areas by adjusting the habitat management regime. For more information contact Paul Green.