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Damage caused by introduced species results from the high population densities and large body sizes that they attain in their new location. Escape from the effects of natural enemies is a frequent explanation given for the success of introduced species. Because some parasites can reduce host density and decrease body size, an invader that leaves parasites(More)
Introduced plant populations lose interactions with enemies, mutualists and competitors from their native ranges, and gain interactions with new species, under new abiotic conditions. From a biogeographical perspective, differences in the assemblage of interacting species, as well as in abiotic conditions, may explain the demographic success of the(More)
Parasites can have strong impacts but are thought to contribute little biomass to ecosystems. We quantified the biomass of free-living and parasitic species in three estuaries on the Pacific coast of California and Baja California. Here we show that parasites have substantial biomass in these ecosystems. We found that parasite biomass exceeded that of top(More)
Introduced species often seem to perform better than conspecifics in their native range. This is apparent in the high densities they may achieve or the larger individual sizes they attain. A prominent hypothesis explaining the success of introduced terrestrial species is that they are typically free of or are less affected by the natural enemies(More)
Plants engage in multiple, simultaneous interactions with other species; some (enemies) reduce and others (mutualists) enhance plant performance. Moreover, effects of different species may not be independent of one another; for example, enemies may compete, reducing their negative impact on a plant. The magnitudes of positive and negative effects, as well(More)
A fundamental assumption in invasion biology is that most invasive species exhibit enhanced performance in their introduced range relative to their home ranges. This idea has given rise to numerous hypotheses explaining "invasion success" by virtue of altered ecological and evolutionary pressures. There are surprisingly few data, however, testing the(More)
Empirical studies suggest that most exotic species have fewer parasite species in their introduced range relative to their native range. However, it is less clear how, ecologically, the loss of parasite species translates into a measurable advantage for invaders relative to native species in the new community. We compared parasitism at three levels (species(More)
The European green crab, Carcinus maenas, is an introduced marine predator established on the west coast of North America. We conducted laboratory experiments on the host specificity of a natural enemy of the green crab, the parasitic barnacle Sacculina carcini, to provide information on the safety of its use as a possible biological control agent. Four(More)
BACKGROUND The invasion of habitats by non-indigenous species (NIS) occurs at a global scale and can generate significant ecological, evolutionary, economic and social consequences. Estuarine and coastal ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to pollution from numerous sources due to years of human-induced degradation and shipping. Pollution is considered(More)
communities and alter biodiversity worldwide when they spread extensively in novel habitats. Biological invasions are an increasing problem in this changing world, and ecologists are now considering the factors – environmental, man-made and biological – that influence their outcome. Recent research shows that parasites are a key factor influencing the(More)