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Marine Invasive Species Database

European Green Crab
A female European green crab with eggs. Photo by NOAA/Linda Shaw.

The National Park Service compiled this database using reports of invasive species in National Parks from U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), NPSpecies, Government Performance Results Act (GPRA) reports, NPS Coastal Watershed Assessments (CWA), and The Nature Conservancy.

To identify marine invasive species that threaten national parks, NPS used A global review of marine invasive species: where they are, how they are being introduced, and which ones are most harmful, by The Nature Conservancy. This database defines invasive species as any species that has become established outside of its native range. The database divides coastal areas around the world into marine ecoregions and lists documented invasive species in that region. Marine ecoregions are areas grouped together based upon having similar species composition. The NPS identified 17 marine ecoregions in North America and U.S. provinces that contain National Parks.

The NPS compared the list of marine invaders in each ecoregion to documented marine invasive species in National Parks from USGS, NPSpecies, GPRA, and Coastal Watershed Assessments. The final result was a comprehensive list of marine invasive species documented within each park boundary, as well as a list of potential marine invasive species that are present within the ecoregion, but are not yet documented in the park in question.

The Nature Conservancy developed a quantitative threat-scoring index based on each species' ecological impact, invasive potential, geographic extent, and management difficulty. This index is incorporated into the database so park managers and visitors can asses the impacts of marine invasions.

Continue to the Marine and Great Lakes Invasive Species database.

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Last Updated: January 25, 2012