Biological Invasions

, Volume 10, Issue 8, pp 1345–1351

In search of a real definition of the biological invasion phenomenon itself

Authors

    • Département d’Ecologie et de Gestion de la Biodiversité, Muséum National d’Histoire NaturelleUniversité de Rennes 1
  • Hervé Fritz
    • Laboratoire de Biométrie et Biologie EvolutiveUniversité de Lyon, Université Lyon 1, CNRS, UMR 5558
  • Jean-Claude Lefeuvre
    • Département d’Ecologie et de Gestion de la Biodiversité, Muséum National d’Histoire NaturelleUniversité de Rennes 1
  • Daniel Simberloff
    • Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology University of Tennessee
Original Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10530-007-9209-7

Cite this article as:
Valéry, L., Fritz, H., Lefeuvre, J. et al. Biol Invasions (2008) 10: 1345. doi:10.1007/s10530-007-9209-7

Abstract

The many qualifying terms attributed to invasive species reveal the lack of precision surrounding the notion of biological invasion itself. In spite of several proposed definitions, some basic disagreements persist concerning characterization of the phenomenon. These primarily arise from the lack of pertinence of both of the main current criteria—the geographic (or biogeographic) criterion and the impact criterion—to what is really intended by “invasion.” Faced with this situation, it seems preferable to adopt an ontological approach allowing a return to the basic principles of the elaboration of a definition. Starting with the nature of the phenomenon itself (i.e., its essence), we try to elucidate the notion of biological invasion and we suggest a general definition compatible with most of the ideas already expressed.

Keywords

Biological invasionDefinitionGeographic criterionImpact criterionInterspecific competitionOntological approach

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008