Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Local communities and Mureş floodplain natural park Romania: a common fight against invasive species.

Abstract

Invasive plant species, like Indigo bush (Amorpha fruticosa L.), Boxelder (Acer negundo L.), Japanese knotweed [Fallopia japonica (Houtt.) Ronse Decr] are altering the conservation status of terrestrial ecosystems along the Mureş Floodplain Natural Park in Romania. On a long run, and a large geographic scale, the invasive species have a high potential to generate a negative impact on the environment and the economy. Hence there is a stringent need of preventing, tracking down, and controlling invasive species. The research was carried out along with an awareness campaign meant to raise the knowledge of the local population regarding the danger of continuous expansion of invasive species through unsustainable agricultural practices. The fieldwork was conducted between September 2015 and April 2017 and consisted of a survey filled in by 240 respondents. After applying the principal component analysis on the answers given to a set of closed questions, we found that most of the attendees considered the meetings and the dissemination materials as important, but some local communities are against fighting Indigo-bush and other invasive species, and consider the cost of intervention is too high. This discrepancy between the degree to which local people appreciated the project and the degree to which they really want to get involved in fighting invasive species shows that grassroots awareness campaigns are still needed.