© 2018

Understanding Invasive Species in the Galapagos Islands

From the Molecular to the Landscape

  • María de Lourdes Torres
  • Carlos F. Mena
  • Explores the problem of invasive species from a multi-scalar perspective, from the molecular to the landscape, and how each of these scales present conservation and management implications

  • Presents a series of studies in the Galapagos Islands, a unique place to study evolution, and now a unique place to understand how introduced species change the environment, creating challenges for endemic species conservation and for management strategies

  • Follows a multi-disciplinary approach, including studies from biology, genetics, ecology, geography and sociology, showing that talking about invasives necessitates the consideration of a broad spectrum of different aspects


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xxvii
  2. From the Molecular

  3. To the Ecosystem

  4. To the Landscape

  5. Back Matter
    Pages 219-237

About this book


This book investigates the introduction of invasive species and their behavior in oceanic islands. How can we define invasive species? What is their history? How did they come to dominate and transform ecosystems? These are relevant questions when trying to understand the behavior of invasive species—primarily in fragile ecosystems such as islands—and to understand the biological, ecological, social and economic impacts of invasions.

We chose the Galapagos Islands, a place well-known to be unique in the study of evolution, as a laboratory to analyze the interactions between invasive and endemic species, to understand the makeup of the ecosystems emerging after invasions have occurred, to describe the relationships of invasives with the people that live in these islands, and to try to develop comprehensive analyses on this topic from multi-scalar and multi-disciplinary points of view. For a long time, the discussion has been about how proper management of the species could achieve two main goals: the eradication of the species to recover affected ecosystems and the conservation of endemic species. The discussion has taken on other nuances, including the suggestion that an invasive species, when it is already adapted to an ecosystem, forms an integral part of it, and thus eradication would in itself go against conservation. On the other hand, some invasive species are not only part of the biological compound of the island ecosystems, but they also form part of the social and cultural history of the inhabited islands. Some of these identified by the local inhabitants are species of real or potential economic value.


Invasive species Protected Areas Nature and Society Genetic diversity Fragile ecosystems Galapagos Islands Endemic species Management strategies Landscape patterns

Editors and affiliations

  • María de Lourdes Torres
    • 1
  • Carlos F. Mena
    • 2
  1. 1.Colegio de Ciencias Biológicas y AmbientalesUniversidad San Francisco de QuitoQuitoEcuador
  2. 2.Colegio de Ciencias Biológicas y AmbientalesUniversidad San Francisco de QuitoQuitoEcuador

About the editors

María de Lourdes Torres, Ph.D.
Vicedecana, Coordinadora Biotecnología
Colegio de Ciencias Biológicas y Ambientales, COCIBA
Universidad San Francisco de Quito
T: (+593) 2 297-1700 ext. 1746
Diego de Robles y Vía Interoceánica, Quito, Ecuador 

Carlos F. Mena
Colegio de Ciencias Biológicas y Ambientales, COCIBA
Universidad San Francisco de Quito
T: (+593 2) 297-1700, ext. 1866

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Understanding Invasive Species in the Galapagos Islands
  • Book Subtitle From the Molecular to the Landscape
  • Editors María de Lourdes Torres
    Carlos F. Mena
  • Series Title Social and Ecological Interactions in the Galapagos Islands
  • Series Abbreviated Title Social and Ecological Interactions Galapagos Islands
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer International Publishing AG 2018
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Earth and Environmental Science Earth and Environmental Science (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-319-67176-5
  • Softcover ISBN 978-3-319-88391-5
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-319-67177-2
  • Series ISSN 2195-1055
  • Series E-ISSN 2195-1063
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XXVII, 237
  • Number of Illustrations 6 b/w illustrations, 37 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Nature Conservation
    Environmental Geography
    Conservation Biology/Ecology
  • Buy this book on publisher's site