Alien Invaders: The Continuing Threat of Exotic Species

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Overview

Alien invaders are plants, animals, and other organisms that have hitchhiked to places they don't belong. Also known as exotic species or biological invaders, alien invaders have spread throughout the world. More than 4,500 have established themselves in the United States alone, including killer bees and fire ants in southern states, zebra mussels in the Great Lakes, tumbleweeds in the southwest, and melaleuca trees in the Everglades. This book lays out the history of the alien species invasion in the United ...
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Overview

Alien invaders are plants, animals, and other organisms that have hitchhiked to places they don't belong. Also known as exotic species or biological invaders, alien invaders have spread throughout the world. More than 4,500 have established themselves in the United States alone, including killer bees and fire ants in southern states, zebra mussels in the Great Lakes, tumbleweeds in the southwest, and melaleuca trees in the Everglades. This book lays out the history of the alien species invasion in the United States and other countries, discusses their serious impacts, and provides good ideas on what readers can do about the problem.

Explains the problems posed by living organisms that invade or spread to new places.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-An intense explanation of the history and dangers of exotic species. Whether introduced intentionally, like rabbits in Australia and water hyacinth in Florida, or unintentionally, like zebra mussels in the Great Lakes, these nonindigenous plants and animals can wreak havoc on native flora and fauna while causing disease and economic ruin among humans. Collard counters the argument that plants and animals have always expanded their habitat into new regions, that this is natural progress of species and natural selection at work, by stating that the transportation methods and carelessness of humans are causing the spread of exotic "invaders" at a rate that cannot be assimilated by nature. In fairness, the author does describe the efforts that many nations and states are now taking to try to control the spread of exotics and to ameliorate the damage. It is also pointed out that the great majority of introduced species do no significant harm to their adopted homes and, in time, do become "naturalized," a functional part of the ecosystem. The presentation concludes with a list of actions individuals can take to lessen this ecological disaster. The text itself is frequently invaded by multipage boxed sidebars that focus on specific cases of exotic infestation and related issues. The eight-page glossary of terms is especially useful. This book delivers an important message seldom heard but well deserving of attention.-Ann G. Brouse, Big Flats Branch Library, NY
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780531112984
  • Publisher: Scholastic Library Publishing
  • Publication date: 9/1/1996
  • Series: Venture Books Series
  • Pages: 128
  • Product dimensions: 6.37 (w) x 9.33 (h) x 0.63 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 3, 2001

    Understanding the Invasion

    I picked up Alien Invaders because the subject seemed personally relevant, since we currently are struggling against the incursion of knapweed on our property. Collard's book took me far beyond my myopic viewpoint and introduced me to the global dimensions of the non-indigenous species issue. Most impressive, I think, was that beyond simply documenting the enormity of the problem ¿ which he expertly did through numerous concrete examples ranging from fish to flower, from insect to bird, from virus to genetic engineering ¿ Collard also squarely tackled the difficult questions like how do we define what actually is indigenous (after all, if you go far enough back, nothing is indigenous) and the most important question, what can we do about it now. And on top of all that, Alien Invaders is written with a simplicity and directness which adroitly treads that thin line between watering down the science and swamping the intended middle and high school audience with too much technical verbiage.

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