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What is an Invasive Non-Native Species?

D vexThe term 'non-native' is used to describe species found beyond their normal or native range. Some have been introduced intentionally, such as rhododendron for ornamental gardens, and some accidentally such as the zebra mussel in ballast water.

A species is classified as an invasive non-native species when it grows at a rate that outcompetes native species without any natural predators to keep it in check. This growth can be devastating to ecosystems, destroying the balance of flora and fauna, often smothering entire areas and in effect creating a mono-culture.

The harm caused by invasive non-native species on the natural environmnent is clear, but there is also an effect on the people living and working in the locality. An occurence of a marine invasive non-native species threatens the livelihood of businesses in the marine sector as it can cause damage to infrastructure, stock and foul equipment.

Marine Scotland's purpose is to manage the seas for prosperity and environmental sustainability. We take the threat of marine invasive non-native species seriously and work with delivery partners to promote biosecurity among marine stakeholders to manage and lower the risk associated with introducing or spreading these species.

The following pages will be kept up-to-date with details of outbreak species and measures in place to eradicate or control the situation and the best advice to follow, whether you are a business or individual, to support the measures in place.

Should you wish to report finding any of the invasive non-native species, please follow the advice listed on the relevant webpage or call Scottish Environment and Rural Services (SEARS) on 08452 30 20 50, or email info@sears.scotland.gov.uk

Please follow these links for information on