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BioControl

, Volume 62, Issue 3, pp 341–354 | Cite as

Assessing the ecological risk posed by a recently established invasive alien predator: Harmonia axyridis as a case study

  • Marc Kenis
  • Tim Adriaens
  • Peter M. J. Brown
  • Angelos Katsanis
  • Gilles San Martin
  • Etienne Branquart
  • Dirk Maes
  • René Eschen
  • Renate Zindel
  • Johan Van Vlaenderen
  • Dirk Babendreier
  • Helen E. Roy
  • Louis Hautier
  • Remy L. Poland
Article

Abstract

Invasive alien predators are a serious threat to biodiversity worldwide. However, there is no generic method for assessing which local species are most at risk following the invasion of a new predator. The harlequin ladybird, Harmonia axyridis (Pallas) (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae), is an alien in Europe and many other parts of the world where it affects other species of ladybirds through competition for food and intra-guild predation (IGP). Here, we describe a method developed to assess which European ladybird species are most at risk following the invasion of H. axyridis. The three components of the risk assessment are: the likelihood that the assessed native species encounters H. axyridis in the field, the hazard of competition for food, and the IGP hazard. Thirty native European ladybird species were assessed through data obtained from field observations, laboratory experiments and literature reviews. The species that are considered most at risk are found on deciduous trees, have immature stages which are highly vulnerable to IGP by H. axyridis, and are primarily aphidophagous. These species should be the focus of specific studies and possibly conservation actions. The risk assessment method proposed here could be applied to other alien predators which are considered a threat to native species through competition and predation.

Keywords

Biological invasions Coccinellidae Ecological impact Harmonia axyridis Intra-guild predation Risk assessment 

Notes

Acknowledgments

The authors acknowledge the help and support of I. Wright and L.-J. Michie, formerly of the Department of Genetics, University of Cambridge, UK. The work in Switzerland was supported by the EU project ALARM (GOCE-CT-2003-506675) and GRANTs from the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (F232-0377) and the Swiss National Science Foundation (3100A0-117831). HER is supported by the Natural Environment Research Council, Joint Nature Conservation Committee and the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. We are very grateful to all the recorders contributing records to the national surveys in Britain and Belgium.

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Copyright information

© International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marc Kenis
    • 1
  • Tim Adriaens
    • 2
  • Peter M. J. Brown
    • 3
  • Angelos Katsanis
    • 1
    • 9
  • Gilles San Martin
    • 4
  • Etienne Branquart
    • 5
  • Dirk Maes
    • 2
  • René Eschen
    • 1
  • Renate Zindel
    • 1
    • 6
  • Johan Van Vlaenderen
    • 1
  • Dirk Babendreier
    • 1
  • Helen E. Roy
    • 7
  • Louis Hautier
    • 4
  • Remy L. Poland
    • 8
  1. 1.CABIDelémontSwitzerland
  2. 2.Research Institute for Nature and Forest (INBO)BrusselsBelgium
  3. 3.Animal & Environment Research Group, Department of Life SciencesAnglia Ruskin UniversityCambridgeUK
  4. 4.Département Sciences du Vivant, Centre Wallon de Recherches AgronomiquesUnité Protection des Plantes et EcotoxicologieGemblouxBelgium
  5. 5.Invasive Species UnitDépartement de l’Etude du Milieu Naturel et Agricole (DEMNA)GemblouxBelgium
  6. 6.Department of BiologyUniversity of FribourgFribourgSwitzerland
  7. 7.NERC Centre for Ecology & HydrologyCrowmarsh GiffordUK
  8. 8.Clifton CollegeBristolUK
  9. 9.Department of Ecology and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of California – IrvineIrvineUSA

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