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

Ton van Haaren ton.vanhaaren at aquasense.nl
Tue Jan 17 10:41:53 CET 2006

Dear All
As you may notice, the WEW has a different opinion about the definition of
an alien species. We add all species that are non-indigenous to The
Netherlands and are introduced into our country through the dissappearance
of a barrier of dispersal. Barriers that were formerly present and prevented
species to disperse themselves are removed and consequently these species
could arrive in our country. This could be the construction of canals,
shipping, by air etc. One of the most important barriers between the Danube
river basis and the Rhine river basis was removed in sept. 1992 through the
construction of the Main-Danube channel. This definition also means that we
do not discriminate in species that has any effect and species that has an
effect (economical, ecological or public health) or species that are
invasive or non-invasive or species that are succesfull or unsuccesfull. We
have chosen to do so for it may occur that one species in one particular
period is succesfull and later on (re-introduces or else) succesfull and
It is up to you were you draw the line. Most of the Dutch species mentioned
in our list have no (noticable) effect what so ever. But the effect on the
community in a certain habitat is not that easy to establish. For instance
the mysid-shrimp Limnomysis benedeni and the gammarid shrimp Dikerogammarus
villosus appear to have an effect on the indigenous fauna. But both species
probably are invasive in our river systems because they were 'empty'. In
habitats with a reasonable development of indigenous fauna both species are
less abundant. Procambarus clarkii, Hemimysis anomala, Atyaephyra and many
other species are non-invasive (except for instance Orconectes limosus and
Eriocheir chinensis). The mosquitoe Aedes albopictus is only recorded in the
Netherlands in glasshouses and not in wild. But all those species will
appear in our Dutch list for they fitt the description of our definition.
But it is essential to describe in the Belgian list what your definition of
an exotic species is. In The Netherlands the term 'exotic' has many
definitions, it depends on what kind of people they are (scientists,
newspapers, civilians, bird-watchers etc.)
best wishes
Ton van Haaren


From: BRANQUART Etienne [mailto:E.Branquart at mrw.wallonie.be] 
Sent: Monday, January 16, 2006 12:46 PM
To: Invasive alien species in Belgium
Subject: Re: [Invasive-species] New webpages for the Belgian Forum on
Invasive Species

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 ( <http://www.wew.nu\exoten> www.wew.nu\exoten). I
updated the information presented on
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 <mailto:ton.vanhaaren at aquasense.nl>  
To: Invasive alien species in  <mailto:invasive-species at biodiversity.be>
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 <http://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.


	the absence of Corbicula fluminalis strikes me. It has been
introduced in The Netherlands in 1988.

	Dreissena polymorpha most likely originates from the Ponto-Caspian

	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.

	Astacus leptodactylus originates form Eastern Europe

	Chelicorophium curvispinum, Dikerogammarus villosus and D.
hamobaphes originate from the Ponto-Caspian area.

	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.

	Orchestia cavimana originate from southern Europe

	the North-American Gammarus tigrinus is quit common in The
Netherlands since 1960. It seems likely that this species also occurs in

	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.

	the absence of Atyaephyra desmaresti (a meditterenean species). This
species has been collected in Belgium for the first time in 1886.

	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.

	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.

	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.

	the fish Ctenopharyngidon idellus originates (Dutch specimens) from

	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 <http://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

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 <mailto:E.Branquart at mrw.wallonie.be> 
URL: http://www.biodiversity.be <http://www.biodiversity.be> 
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