Alaska's fisheries and marine mammals, and the habitats that support them, are at risk of degradation from the spread of invasive species.
Invasive species can:
- Alter ecosystems.
- Displace, compete and prey on native species.
- Foul infrastructure.
- Sicken humans by causing diseases.
Invasive species can be discharged from ship's ballast water and organisms attached to the hull of ships. Increases in shipping and vessel-based tourism—along with climate change due to a warming Arctic—mean that infestations are becoming more probable. In Alaska, NOAA Fisheries works with other federal agencies, the State of Alaska, academic institutions, and local communities to educate, monitor, detect invasive species. If necessary, we work to control or eradicate invasive species that may pose a threat to marine life under NOAA Fisheries jurisdiction.
Green Crab Detected in Alaska for the First Time, August 24th, 2022. NOAA Fisheries and partners confirm presence of invasive green crabs on Annette Islands Reserve.
Look Out for Invasive Crab! The green crab is invading from the west coast and making its way to Alaska.
- The Aquatic Nuisance Species Task Force - An Intergovernmental Group Dedicated to Preventing and Controlling Aquatic Invasive Species.
- Arctic Invasive Alien Species Strategy and Action Plan.
- Arctic Invasive Alien Species Strategy and Action Plan Presentation to North Pacific Fisheries Management Council, June 2017, Presenter: Linda Shaw, National Marine Fisheries Service. (PDF, 9 pages)
- News Release: NOAA Helps Implement Community-Based Invasive Species Monitoring as part of Bering Sea Days.
- Marine Invasive Species Learning as a Component of Bering Sea Days, St. Paul Island, 2018 Poster: Linda Shaw, National Marine Fisheries Service. (PDF, 1 page)
- Sitka Marine Invasive Species Bioblitz, June 12-14, 2010, Presenter: Linda Shaw, National Marine Fisheries Service. (PDF, 52 pages)
- Alaska Spartina Prevention, Detection and Response Plan, Vanessa Howard Morgan and Mark Sytsma, Aquatic Bioinvasion Research & Policy Institute Center for Lakes and Reservoirs, Portland State University, January 2010 January. (PDF, 84 pages)
- Modeling habitat suitability for the invasive salt marsh cordgrass Spartina using ShoreZone coastal habitat mapping data in Southeast Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington State, December 2008. (PDF, 68 pages)
Evaluation of a Habitat Suitability Model for the Invasive European Green Crab Using Species Occurrence Data from Western Vancouver Island, British Columbia, July 2008. (PDF, 51 pages)
- Shorezone Habitat Capability Modeling: A study of potential suitable habitat for the invasive European green crab (Carcinus maenas) in Southeast Alaska, British Columbia, and Washington State, August 2007. (PDF, 75 pages)
Bering Sea Days 2019 Final Report, (PDF, 35 pages)
- Linda Shaw, Wildlife Biologist