Euryhalinity of Ponto-Caspian invaders in their native and introduced regions.

Pauli, Nora-Charlotte and Briski, Elizabeta (2018) Euryhalinity of Ponto-Caspian invaders in their native and introduced regions. Open Access Aquatic Invasions, 13 (4). pp. 439-447. DOI 10.3391/ai.2018.13.4.02.

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In the past several decades, Ponto-Caspian species have established in freshwater and brackish habitats of the North and Baltic Sea and Great Lakes-St. Lawrence River region in much higher numbers than expected based on introduction effort (i.e. shipping frequency) and environmental conditions between these regions. Several studies have suggested that Ponto-Caspian taxa are euryhaline and might be able to adapt rapidly to changing salinity conditions, and therefore may be more successful colonizers than species from other regions. To determine the realized niche in the native and introduced habitats of Ponto-Caspian invaders and to assess whether they have expanded their salinity tolerance during the invasion process, we conducted a literature search to assess the salinity ranges of 55 Ponto-Caspian species in their native and introduced ranges. Our results confirmed that the majority of those species occupied a wide range of salinity in their native and introduced habitats. Approximately 50% of species were reported from both freshwater and brackish habitats (0–18 PSU) in their native region, occupying a salinity range of at least 10 PSU difference. In general, the number of species tended to decline as salinity increased in both native and introduced habitats. More than 90% of Ponto-Caspian invaders occupied freshwater (< 0–0.5 PSU) habitats, while 18% did not occur above 18 PSU. Overall, 46% of species were reported from a narrower salinity range in their introduced compared to their native region. Consequently, our study revealed significantly broader salinity ranges in native compared to introduced habitats. As our results suggest that the majority of Ponto-Caspian invaders occupy freshwater and brackish habitats in their native region, the recent numerous invasions of freshwater and brackish areas by these species should not be a surprise. Therefore, managers and policy makers should take into account that the majority of Ponto-Caspian invaders originate from fresh water or low salinities and develop new regulations to prevent future invasions from the Ponto-Caspian region, as well as from areas highly invaded by Ponto-Caspian taxa such as Northern Europe.

Document Type: Article
Additional Information: This special issue of "Aquatic Invasions" includes papers presented at the 20th International Conference on Aquatic Invasive Species (ICAIS) held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, October 22–26, 2017, and additional research articles on bioinvasions in inland waters.
Keywords: salinity tolerance, Ponto-Caspian non-indigenous species, salinity barrier, salinity of native region, salinity of introduced region
Research affiliation: OceanRep > GEOMAR > FB3 Marine Ecology > FB3-EOE-N Experimental Ecology - Food Webs
Refereed: Yes
Open Access Journal?: Yes
DOI etc.: 10.3391/ai.2018.13.4.02
ISSN: 1818-5487
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2018 09:00
Last Modified: 24 May 2019 13:16

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