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Prospects for management strategies of invasive crayfish populations with an emphasis on biological control

Citation
Freeman MA, Turnbull J, Yeomans WE & Bean CW (2010) Prospects for management strategies of invasive crayfish populations with an emphasis on biological control, Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems, 20 (2), pp. 211-223.

Abstract

1. The white-clawed crayfish, Austropotamobius pallipes (Lereboullet), is the only freshwater crayfish indigenous to Great Britain and Ireland. It has a widespread, though declining distribution in England and parts of Wales but does not occur naturally in Scotland.

2. The North American signal crayfish, Pacifastacus leniusculus (Dana), is not native to Europe and was introduced to Britain in the 1970s. The signal crayfish out-competes the native white-clawed crayfish as it is larger and more aggressive. It is also responsible for the introduction and spread of crayfish plague, which has devastated white-clawed crayfish populations in Europe.

3. Signal crayfish populations are causing significant changes to the equilibrium of native flora and fauna through increased grazing and predation pressures; they also contribute to habitat degradation through burrowing.

4. Manual removal of crayfish using traps and pond trials with biocides have met with moderate success in reducing crayfish numbers and containing populations. However, with new populations of signal crayfish being reported each year within the UK, there is now an urgent need to develop a strategy with which to eradicate or contain their spread.

5. Signal crayfish have populated many habitat types in the UK, each of which may require a different control strategy; hence no single strategy or universal solution is likely to be attainable.

6. Signal crayfish are susceptible to various biocides and microbial pathogens but significant scientific research will be required to develop safe biological control methods and integrated pest management (IPM) strategies to control these invasive organisms.

Keywords
signal crayfish; non-native; pest; invasive; biological control; IPM

StatusPublished
AuthorsFreeman Mark A, Turnbull James, Yeomans William E, Bean Colin W
Publication date03/2010
PublisherWiley-Blackwell
ISSN 1052-7613
LanguageEnglish

Journal
Aquatic Conservation: Marine and Freshwater Ecosystems: Volume 20, Issue 2 (2010)

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