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What are the effects of aquatic invasive alien species on fishery habitats, fishery organisms and fishermen/women.


(Water lettuce)



Plants that are considered non-native to an environment are referred to as alien invasive species. These alien invasive species may either have been introduced to the new environment deliberately or just by accident. They are capable of causing great harm to their new habitat. Some examples of alien invasive species (AIS) that are common in water or fish habitat include but is not limited to water hyacinth, water lettuce, hornwort, papyrus reed etc. Aquatic invasive alien species (AIS) is a major threat to aquatic ecosystems, fisheries habitats, and fishery organisms. This article discusses how alien invasive species negatively impacts fish habitats, fishery organisms and the fisheries industry.

Effects of alien invasive species (AIS) on fish habitat

One of the greatest problems associated with the fisheries industry has to do with alien invasive species. The presence of these invasive species in water bodies can have very negative effect on fish habitats. One of the reasons why they are a problem is that because of their invasive nature, they compete with other native species. For example, they share the available food in the space and their habitats with the native species. Another danger that the alien invasive species pose is that of negatively impacting the quality of water in the habitat. Also, they may introduce and spread diseases into the space. Distortion of the food chain in the habitat is another negative impact on the ecosystem. Some alien invasive species can even cause native species to disappear from the system.

(Water hyacinth)

Effects of alien invasive species (AIS) on Fisheries organisms

Another aspect of the fishery’s industry affected by alien invasive species are fisheries organisms. Some of the fisheries organism affected include fish, shellfish, and other aquatic species. For instance, alien invasive species compete for food with the native plants and even the space within the habitat. They can disturb native ecosystems. It is not uncommon for alien invasive species to even introduce to their new abode. Again, alien invasive species can cause damage fish habitats and thereby causing harm to fisheries organisms. For example, as water hyacinth covers the surface of the water, it prevents the Sun from directly hitting the water.

Effects of alien invasive species (AIS) on Fishermen

Invasive alien species can have a very negative impact on fisherfolks. The reason being that, as mentioned earlier, their presence in an ecosystem can lead to a reduction in the number of fish native to the area so that fishermen would now catch less fish than before. This will subsequently affect catches and reduce their income. Invasive alien species can also change the turbidity and temperature of the water to a point where the fish would have to adapt other habits to survive. This will cause fishermen to change their fishing strategies. Finally, as the invasive species colonize the new environment, they introduce new diseases which can negatively affect the fish population and further reduce fish numbers, which then reduce their catch and reduce their economic fortunes.


Overall, the analysis of the effects of aquatic invasive alien species on fishery habitats, fishery organisms and fishers has revealed that these species can have a significant and devastating impact on the environment and local communities. With the introduction of new species and the spread of existing species, the threats posed to the aquatic environment are increasing. It is therefore essential that governments and other organizations take effective measures to reduce and prevent the spread of aquatic invasive alien species and their effects. Only by taking such measures can we ensure the protection of our habitats and the future of our fisheries.

 Also Read:

The characteristics of invasive alien species

How to prevent and control invasive alien species in your country

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