[Invasive-species] New webpages for the Belgian Forum on Invasive Species

BRANQUART Etienne E.Branquart at mrw.wallonie.be
Mon Jan 16 12:45:51 CET 2006

Dear Ton, Jean-Pierre and other colleagues,

Thank you very much for these additional remarks. I have to say that I'm very impressed by the amount of information gathered by the Werkgroep Ecologisch Waterbeheer (www.wew.nu\exoten). I updated the information presented on http://www.biodiversity.be/thematic-forums/invasive-alien-species/species accordingly.

The question is where to stop. As stated by Leo, there are hundreds of adventive and naturalized plant species for Belgium but only a few of them are known to be detrimental for environment. We decided earlier to include in that list species that (i) are non indigenous, (ii) were recorded in Belgium and (iii) are either in strong geographical expansion or are known to produce detrimental impacts on environment sensu lato. According to those criteria, it can be asked if we have to include in the list species as Procambarus clarkii, Hemimysis anomala, Atyaephyra demareti, etc. Any opinion ?

Some additional questions : 

(i) what to do with Stenopelmus rufinasus, which is feeding exclusively on Azolla (known as an IAS in Belgium) and can be considered as a good biocontrol agent for this species (see http://el.erdc.usace.army.mil/aqua/apis/biocontrol/html/stenopel.html, http://sunsite.wits.ac.za/env/apes.htm, http://www.invasive.org/publications/xsymposium/Session9.html...) ?
(ii) what to do with bark beetles as Ips typographus and Pityogenes chalcographus which are mainly damaging spruce trees, which are not considered as indigenous in Belgium ?
(iii) what to do with Nysius huttoni, a bug from New Zealand which is known to produce huge damage on wheat and cruciferous crops... but can also feed on numerous wild plants in Europe ?
(iv) what to do with Aedes albopictus, a mosquito vector of the human West Nile Virus ?

Thank for your ideas and suggestions. Cheers,


 ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Ton van Haaren 
  To: Invasive alien species in Belgium 
  Sent: Wednesday, January 11, 2006 10:36 AM
  Subject: RE: [Invasive-species] New webpages for the Belgian Forum on Invasive Species

  Dear Etienne
  I have seen the invasive species list of Belgium and I do think that the list is somewhat short. Although I do not have any idea how many species and which species really do occur in Belgium, but there are some errors made in that list. As a member of the Dutch version of invasive species forum, I'm responsible for the invertebrate list of the invasive species in The Netherland presented on www.wew.nu\exoten. While verifying the Dutch list with the Belgian list there are some differences of which I mention some below. Also the list of freshwater species of the higher plants must be longer than this (5 species!). in The Netherland there are about 30 species recorded.
    1.. the absence of Corbicula fluminalis strikes me. It has been introduced in The Netherlands in 1988.
    2.. Dreissena polymorpha most likely originates from the Ponto-Caspian area
    3.. Mytilopsis leucophaeta is a species that originates from N-America or NW-Africa. The first European record is from 1835 from the harbour of Antwerpen. The original distribution area is the Gulf of Mexico and adjacent Atlantic Ocean.
    4.. Astacus leptodactylus originates form Eastern Europe
    5.. Chelicorophium curvispinum, Dikerogammarus villosus and D. hamobaphes originate from the Ponto-Caspian area.
    6.. Dikerogammarus haemobaphes in Belgium seems unlikely, the nearest record in western Europe seems to be some few records in Germany. Recent claims from this species in the Nertherlands were all female or specimens with an artefact.
    7.. Orchestia cavimana originate from southern Europe
    8.. the North-American Gammarus tigrinus is quit common in The Netherlands since 1960. It seems likely that this species also occurs in Belgium.
    9.. the absence of both Hemimysis anomala and Limnomysis benedeni seems peculiar. The last species is extremely common throughout The Netherlands since it was introduced in 1997.
    10.. the absence of Atyaephyra desmaresti (a meditterenean species). This species has been collected in Belgium for the first time in 1886.
    11.. the oligochaet Quistadrilus multisetosis also occurs in Belgium and originates from North-America. This species had probably been introduced (at least in The Netherland) around 1980.
    12.. the mosquitoe Aedes albopictus also occurs in Belgium as an invasive species from North-America or Asia. There is a record from 2003 from Antwerpen. Although I understand this species is deliberately omitted from the list, for it's a vector of a human disease.
    13.. the beetle Stenopelmus rufinasus is a north-American species that has been introduced in France at the beginning of the 20th century. Between 1915-1922 the beetle arrived in The Netherlands and is now extremely common on and between Azolla.
    14.. the fish Ctenopharyngidon idellus originates (Dutch specimens) from china
    15.. Hypophthalmichthys molitrix originates from Russia or China
  Note that this is just a short list of Dutch species, and that the origin or introduction year maybe different in Belgium. You may check our list on www.wew.nu\exoten.

  Best wishes
  Ton van Haaren


  From: BRANQUART Etienne [mailto:E.Branquart at mrw.wallonie.be] 
  Sent: Tuesday, January 10, 2006 4:47 PM
  To: invasive-species at biodiversity.be
  Subject: [Invasive-species] New webpages for the Belgian Forum on Invasive Species

  Dear all,

  New webpages of the Belgian Forum on Invasive Species have been developed and are accessible from the following URL :


  As you'll see, the list of invasive alien species in Belgium has been updated, thanks to the contribution of numerous forum members. I would like to take the opportunity to thank all of you who contributed to this task by sending information on new invasive species in Belgium. Species factsheets will be incorporated in the new website in a few days, including additional species profiles on fishes, parakeets, etc. A special thank to Dieter Anseeuw, Marie Pairon and Diederik Strubbe who prepared background information for those new profiles.

  Of course, new species and information can be added to this reference list for Belgium. Please feel free to send new information on the list or directly to my e-mail address.

  On those pages, new information is also avaiable on international IAS resources (working groups, research networks, etc.), thematic news and events, etc. Additional information on legislation and other IAS-related issues will be also developed in the future. Any comment or suggestion is very welcome.

  Very best regards,

  Etienne Branquart

  Dr.  Etienne Branquart
  Belgian Biodiversity Platform (SPO)
  Ministere de la Region wallonne
  Centre de Recherche de la Nature, des Forets et du Bois (DGRNE)
  Avenue Marechal Juin, 23
  B-5030 Gembloux- Belgium
  Tel :   + 32 (0)81 620 420
  Fax :  + 32 (0)81 620 436
  E-mail : E.Branquart at mrw.wallonie.be
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