Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Pathologists and entomologists must join forces against forest pest and pathogen invasions.

Abstract

The world's forests have never been more threatened by invasions of exotic pests and pathogens, whose causes and impacts are reinforced by global change. However, forest entomologists and pathologists have, for too long, worked independently, used different concepts and proposed specific management methods without recognising parallels and synergies between their respective fields. Instead, we advocate increased collaboration between these two scientific communities to improve the long-term health of forests. Our arguments are that the pathways of entry of exotic pests and pathogens are often the same and that insects and fungi often coexist in the same affected trees. Innovative methods for preventing invasions, early detection and identification of non-native species, modelling of their impact and spread and prevention of damage by increasing the resistance of ecosystems can be shared for the management of both pests and diseases. We, therefore, make recommendations to foster this convergence, proposing in particular the development of interdisciplinary research programmes, the development of generic tools or methods for pest and pathogen management and capacity building for the education and training of students, managers, decision-makers and citizens concerned with forest health.