Coping with invasive marine species
World-wide, researchers and managers are starting to focus more attention on invasive species. One of the highest profile marine invaders of recent years is the seaweed Caulerpa taxifolia. This seaweed is native to tropical and sub-tropical regions around the world (including Queensland), but in the mid 1980s an invasive strain was discovered in the cool waters of the Mediterranean. Outbreaks of Cauerlpa were discovered in NSW in 2000 and, although unclear whether it was the same strain as that in the Mediterranean, the seaweed began spreading widely in NSW and was declared a noxious species in this State. In this talk I describe the methods developed by NSW DPI for controlling the spread of Caulerpa and the research being done to investigate the potential impacts of the seaweed. I also discuss some of the other invasive marine species that we need to be concerned about and explain some of the difficulties in detecting these species, limiting their spread and studying their impacts.