Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

The influence of time since introduction on the population growth of introduced species and the consequences for management.

Abstract

Several processes likely act to change the demographic rates of introduced species over time, and this changing demography could influence the optimal management of invasive populations. Optimal management strategies should be derived based on the demography. However, we have a poor understanding of the degree to which the demography of introduced species changes following initial introduction. We used published matrix population models of introduced plant populations to test how population growth rate and elasticity change with time since introduction. We did not find a significant relationship between population growth rate and time since introduction. However, elasticity to stasis increased while elasticity to growth decreased with time since introduction. Broadly, as time since introduction progressed the elasticities of the introduced plant populations became more similar to those that have been reported for native species. These results suggest that the optimal management strategy should be derived incorporating elasticity through time, especially when the time scope of management is long or the available demographic data were obtained in the past.