Invasive species terminology: standardizing for stakeholder education.
The excessive number of terms associated with invasive species, and their often incorrect usage, hinders stakeholder education about the threats of invasive species. Here we introduce seven terms (native, nonnative, introduced, established, invasive, nuisance, and range change) that are applicable across invasive taxa, understandable, typically interpreted correctly, and useful for describing most situations regarding invasive species. We also list six terms to avoid (native invasive, invasive exotic, invasive weed, alien, foreign, and nonindigenous) that create confusion via their misuse and misinterpretation. The terms we propose will increase understanding, thereby promoting behavior changes aimed at limiting the negative impacts of invasive species.