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Guidance and Tools

Native to Brazil, the strawberry guava is now shading native vegetation of tropical forests and woodlands in Hawaii, Polynesia, Mauritius, Florida and Norfolk island, causing extensive damage to local ecosystems.
Credit: Jean-Jacques Segalen, Barbadine

This page provides links to some key tools and guidance related to invasive alien species, as well as to guidance documents that are specific to certain pathways.

General Tools and Guidance

Plant Biosecurity Tool Box, web-based diagnostic information to assist with the rapid identification of exotic plant pests and diseases in the event of an incursion.

Scientific Research

Scientific research has been identified as a significant pathway causing spread of pests and diseases on contaminated equipment and by movement of research organisms and biological specimens. Researchers may also carry equipment, pests or organisms to sites of high conservation value that may be closed to the public.

U.S. Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force. 1994. Protocol for evaluating research proposals concerning nonindigenous aquatic species
“Requires that an intergovernmental Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force develop and implement a protocol to ensure that research carried out under Subtitle C of the Nonindigenous Aquatic Nuisance Prevention and Control Act of 1990, does not result in the introduction or dispersal of nonindigenous aquatic nuisance species to the waters of the United States.”

American Society of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists, American Fisheries Society, and the American Institute of Fisheries Research Biologists. Guidelines for use of fishes in field research
“In addition to government regulations pertaining to the conduct of research, permission usually is required for the transport of animals across state or international boundaries. Currently in the United States, authority for interstate transport of fishes is usually under the jurisdiction of the fish and game agency of the state into which the animals will be transported, while international shipments most commonly are under the control of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). The intent of these regulations is to prevent the introduction of exotic disease agents as well as to address concerns associated with endangered or threatened species of animals.”

Australian Department of the Environment and Heritage – Australian Antarctic Division. Code of conduct: environmental code for participants in the Australian Antarctic Program
“Report all environmental incidents, hazards and suggested improvements to your field, station or voyage leader (e.g. presence of exotic species, fuel or chemical spills, entanglement of wildlife). These must be logged on the Incident Reporting System on the AAD Intranet for action.”

Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research. Code of Conduct for field work: transfer of alien species to Antarctica and subantarctic islands and between location transfer of species
This code of conduct aims to minimise introductions of alien species to Antarctic and subantarctic environments and to reduce the risk of accidental transfer of alien species between major ice-free localities. “All scientists of Antarctic Treaty Nations are obliged to follow Article III of the Antarctic Treaty and our corresponding relevant national legislation concerning protection of Antarctic ecosystems. (...) Antarctic scientists potentially have a higher chance of carrying alien diasporas to Antarctic and subantarctic ecosystems than other Antarctic travellers because their field of study often takes them to alpine or northern polar habitats. In the process of conducting research within these habitats Antarctic scientists can inadvertently pickup diaspores on clothing, equipment and equipment cases. If these items are then taken to the Antarctic and they have not been cleaned/ sterilised to remove or kill the diaspores, the opportunity to transfer such material to Antarctic ecosystems is created. The ecological potential for establishment of northern polar or alpine taxa is great as such species have pre-adaptations to cold environments.”

  • United Nations
  • United Nations Environment Programme