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Invasive Links

June 4, 2006 pm30 12:04 pm

My catching-up–with-links project continues. Two of my links are related to invasive species. a website about the wild parrots of brooklyn is loaded with real science, advocacy for not wiping the critters out —

The fact that North America has a new parrot on its shores is in my view a blessing, especially because our countrymen wiped out our only native parrot – the Carolina Parakeet – nearly a hundred years ago. Nature has given us the rarest of gifts: a second chance.

— and some lighter material, such as the answer to the question: "Do Brooklyn Parrots Eat Brooklyn Pizza?".

Is this for real? Yes. This is not a hoax site. Brooklyn has a large population of monk parakeets, as do several coastal communities in northeast states. Later this summer I will spend a few days on Long Island Sound, and the trees next door are loaded with them. Maybe I will put up an audio clip. I will certainly take some pictures.


The other invasive link is Invasive Species Weblog. Not all invasives are as cute and as green as Brooklyn's parrots. Jennifer Forman Orth runs a lively blog discussing the cute and the not so cute.

As our species gets around the globe more and more quickly, we transport more and more species to places where they do well (no natural predators is always an advantage, but I think the process is more complicated than that.) A new species doing well often means native species getting crowded out, contributing to the fall in species diversity.

Now, this is not new. Our mobile species (started in Africa, now inhabits all but one continent, adapted to many habitats, plus learned to alter them, dramatically) has been spreading species for a long, long, time. Horse, dog, cat, pig, chicken. Wheat, barley, maize, potato, rice. Peas, beans, onions, lentils. Rats. Roses? Anything you can see in China and in the US, or in South America and Europe, it was probably introduced by man.

But The Invasive Species Weblog is devoted to the most recent invaders, and our attempts to control them. Such as the attempt to get pythons to rat out other pythons in the Everglades. (June 1 entry). The eradication of a population of zebra mussels in Chesapeake Bay (May 17 entry). False accusations against invasive squirrels in England, photos of invasive flowers in Massachussetts, and photos of invasive tunicates (looks like orange slimy rock scum) in the same state.

Fascinating stuff, sometimes scary, always easy to read. Jennifer maintains several other botanical and biological blogs.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. June 9, 2006 am30 1:11 am 1:11 am

    I gotta confess I’m more interested in the pizza than the parrots.

    Why on earth is there a parrot blog and no pizza blog? I think it would be a huge success.

  2. JBL permalink
    June 13, 2006 pm30 4:40 pm 4:40 pm

    I don’t know about a pizza blog, but a friend of mine found a list of New York pizza places with reviews that he uploaded into his iPod.

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