Saving camels from straws: how propagule pressure-based prevention policies can reduce the risk of biological invasion

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Abstract

Nonnative species that harm or have the potential to cause harm to the environment, economy, or human health are known as invasive species. Propagule pressure may be the most important factor in establishment success of nonnative species of various taxa in a variety of ecosystems worldwide, and strong evidence is emerging that propagule pressure determines both the scale of invasion extent and impact. In a limited way, the US government is applying a “propagule pressure approach” in a variety of prevention policy contexts aimed at minimizing the impact of harmful organisms. However, there are also readily apparent opportunities for enacting propagule pressure-based measures to fill current gaps in invasive species prevention and control at national, state, and local levels. An explicit focus on propagule pressure-based policies could substantially increase the effectiveness of US efforts to prevent the introduction of invasive species through by intentional and unintentional introductions.

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