Ecological Factors Affecting Community Invasibility

  • Suzanne V. Olyarnik
  • Matthew E. S. Bracken
  • Jarrett E. Byrnes
  • A. Randall Hughes
  • Kristin M. Hultgren
  • John J. Stachowicz
Part of the Ecological Studies book series (ECOLSTUD, volume 204)

What makes a community invasible? For over a century ecologists have sought to understand the relative importance of biotic and abiotic factors that determine community composition. The fact that we are still exploring this topic today hints at both its importance and complexity. As the impacts from harmful non-native species accumulate, it has become increasingly urgent to find answers to the more applied aspects of this question: what makes a habitat vulnerable to invasion by additional species, and which species are likely to invade? Answers to these questions will not only aid in targeting conservation efforts but will also advance our understanding of marine community ecology.

Over the past few decades, we have seen substantial progress in understanding biological invasions, including the identification of several factors that affect community invasibility. While there is a growing body of research on invasibility in marine systems, the majority of studies are from terrestrial systems (see Fig. 12.2). Where available, we review results from marine studies; where these are scarce, we draw attention to this limitation and supplement our review with what, if anything, is known from other systems.


Invasion Success Biotic Resistance Invasional Meltdown Invasion Resistance Propagule Supply 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Suzanne V. Olyarnik
    • 1
  • Matthew E. S. Bracken
    • 2
  • Jarrett E. Byrnes
    • 1
  • A. Randall Hughes
    • 1
  • Kristin M. Hultgren
    • 3
  • John J. Stachowicz
    • 4
  1. 1.UC Davis Bodega Marine LaboratoryBodega BayUSA
  2. 2.Northeastern UniversityMarine Science CenterNahantUSA
  3. 3.Smithsonian Tropical Research InstituteAPOUSA
  4. 4.Department of Evolution and EcologyUniversity of California, DavisDavisUSA

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