With tremendous biological diversity (biodiversity) and a large inventory of intact aquatic ecosystems, Manitoba is highly vulnerable to these new biological invasions. Over the last decade, there has been a growing awareness that introduced invasive species are having significant and increasing impacts on Manitoba's economy, ecosystems, native species and human health.
Invasive species have the ability to quickly establish and spread often "taking over" entire areas and choking out or replacing native species. This reduces the biodiversity (variety of life) in an area, taking away habitat for wildlife that evolved with native species. Invasive species have been identified by the World Conservation Union as the second most significant threat to biodiversity, after habitat loss. They can also affect local economies by causing losses in agricultural and forestry production, increased management costs, and loss of tourism and recreation revenue. If it were possible to quantify the cost of decreased biodiversity and species extinction caused by invasive species, we would find the economic impact of invasive species would be far greater.
A continued and unchecked advance of invasive species in and around Manitoba's waterways could result in the loss of unique ecosystems and native species. (more)
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