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Suffolk, United Kingdom

Puntila R.,University of Helsinki | Vilizzi L.,Murray Darling Freshwater Research Center | Lehtiniemi M.,Finnish Environment Institute | Copp G.H.,Salmon and Freshwater Team | And 2 more authors.
Risk Analysis | Year: 2013

The climatic conditions of north temperate countries pose unique influences on the rates of invasion and the potential adverse impacts of non-native species. Methods are needed to evaluate these risks, beginning with the pre-screening of non-native species for potential invasives. Recent improvements to the Fish Invasiveness Scoring Kit (FISK) have provided a means (i.e., FISK v2) of identifying potentially invasive non-native freshwater fishes in virtually all climate zones. In this study, FISK is applied for the first time in a north temperate country, southern Finland, and calibrated to determine the appropriate threshold score for fish species that are likely to pose a high risk of being invasive in this risk assessment area. The threshold between "medium" and "high" risk was determined to be 22.5, which is slightly higher than the original threshold for the United Kingdom (i.e., 19) and that determined for a FISK application in southern Japan (19.8). This underlines the need to calibrate such decision-support tools for the different areas where they are employed. The results are evaluated in the context of current management strategies in Finland regarding non-native fishes. © 2013 Society for Risk Analysis.


Nunn A.D.,University of Hull | Copp G.H.,Salmon and Freshwater Team | Copp G.H.,Bournemouth University | Vilizzi L.,La Trobe University | Carter M.G.,UK Environment Agency
Ecology of Freshwater Fish | Year: 2010

The population behaviours associated with the migrations of fishes in lowland river ecosystems are amongst the most poorly-understood dispersal mechanisms of temperate freshwater organisms. This study evaluated the influence of four environmental variables (light levels, river discharge, water temperature and water velocity) on the timing, intensity and direction of fish movements between the River Avon (Hampshire, England) and a small floodplain tributary, Ibsley Brook, over a 12-month period. Using canonical correspondence analysis (CCA) to identify patterns of movement (by groups of species) and the relative strengths of explanatory variables in the data, the probability of fishes migrating between the river and tributary was determined using Bayesian modelling. The intensity and direction of fish movements between the river and tributary varied temporally, both on a diel and seasonal basis, and there were species- and age-specific patterns in behaviour. Diel movements appeared to be triggered by changes in light intensity and brook water velocity, whereas seasonal movements were mostly driven by changes in river discharge and water temperature, particularly those associated with floods. This study emphasises the importance of connectivity in river systems, as fishes migrated in all conditions, but especially during rapidly-rising discharge. © 2009 John Wiley & Sons A/S.


Tarkan A.S.,Mugla University | Gaygusuz O.,Istanbul University | Gursoy Gaygusuz C.,Trakya University | Sac G.,Istanbul University | And 2 more authors.
Fisheries Management and Ecology | Year: 2012

Gibel carp, Carassius gibelio (Bloch), impacts on native fish species have been reported but little studied despite a long history of introductions in Europe. This species is able to reproduce gynogenetically, which involves the use of sperm from males of other species to activate egg development, so reproductive competition is a likely but virtually unstudied impact of gibel carp on native fishes. This study evaluates the impact of introduced C. gibelio on the population biology of native fishes over a 6-year period in a mesotrophic drinking water reservoir in north-western Turkey. A dramatic decrease in the relative density (i.e. catch per unit effort) of native species correlated significantly with an increase in C. gibelio relative density. Growth characteristics (back-calculated ages, growth index and relative condition) and length at maturity did not differ significantly among years in C. gibelio and native fishes. Relative density, duration of spawning, reproductive effort and gonado-somatic index of C. gibelio increased with some water quality variables [total phosphorus (TP); chlorophyll-a (Chl-a)] and coincided with decreasing trends for natives. However, TP and Chl-a were not correlated with growth features in C. gibelio or natives fishes. The results suggest that the decline in the reservoir's native cyprinid populations is likely due to a combination of degrading environmental conditions and a disparity in reproductive effort, with introduced C. gibelio invasion facilitated by gynogenetic reproduction and an observed interference with native fishes during spawning. © 2012 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.


Vilizzi L.,Murray Darling Freshwater Research Center | Copp G.H.,Salmon and Freshwater Team | Copp G.H.,Trent University | Britton J.R.,Bournemouth University
Knowledge and Management of Aquatic Ecosystems | Year: 2013

Suspected of being in decline, the European barbel Barbus barbus population of the River Lee, a heavily-modified river in South East England, has been the subject of investigations to identify factors associated with perceived population decreases. Population surveys between 1995 and 1999 captured a total of 912 individuals, and standard length (SL) frequency analyses between years suggested that the population decline was not related to juvenile recruitment but rather to a recruitment bottleneck in fish 300-340 mm SL. This bottleneck probably results from insufficient available habitat suitable to this size class. Of the sampled fish, scales were removed from 764 and were used in a scale ageing exercise among three researchers. Analyses of their independent age estimates revealed variable interpretations, which arose from uncertainties relating to the difficulty of analysing scale patterns from relatively large, slow-growing fish. Nevertheless, error was within published acceptable margins, and age estimates revealed B. barbus in the river to age 10 years, lower than in many UK rivers. The SL-at-age growth curve was characterised by very fast growth in the initial years of life. Thus, the causal factors in the decline of this B. barbus population appear to have been in the adult life-stage habitat and were likely related to the loss of longitudinal connectivity, mainly due to the presence of water retention structures. River and aquatic ecosystem remediation strategies should therefore focus on enhancing longitudinal connectivity in conjunction with the ongoing improvement of water quality and ecosystem integrity. © ONEMA, 2013.


Lawson L.L.,University of Florida | Hill J.E.,University of Florida | Vilizzi L.,Murray Darling Freshwater Research Center | Hardin S.,Florida Fish And Wildlife Conservation Commission | And 3 more authors.
Risk Analysis | Year: 2013

The initial version (v1) of the Fish Invasiveness Scoring Kit (FISK) was adapted from the Weed Risk Assessment of Pheloung, Williams, and Halloy to assess the potential invasiveness of nonnative freshwater fishes in the United Kingdom. Published applications of FISK v1 have been primarily in temperate-zone countries (Belgium, Belarus, and Japan), so the specificity of this screening tool to that climatic zone was not noted until attempts were made to apply it in peninsular Florida. To remedy this shortcoming, the questions and guidance notes of FISK v1 were reviewed and revised to improve clarity and extend its applicability to broader climatic regions, resulting in changes to 36 of the 49 questions. In addition, upgrades were made to the software architecture of FISK to improve overall computational speed as well as graphical user interface flexibility and friendliness. We demonstrate the process of screening a fish species using FISK v2 in a realistic management scenario by assessing the Barcoo grunter Scortum barcoo (Terapontidae), a species whose management concerns are related to its potential use for aquaponics in Florida. The FISK v2 screening of Barcoo grunter placed the species into the lower range of medium risk (score = 5), suggesting it is a permissible species for use in Florida under current nonnative species regulations. Screening of the Barcoo grunter illustrates the usefulness of FISK v2 as a proactive tool serving to inform risk management decisions, but the low level of confidence associated with the assessment highlighted a dearth of critical information on this species. © 2012 Society for Risk Analysis.

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