Welcome to the fifith edition of our ebulletin Double Trouble.
In the Concord woods of Massachusetts, where conservationist and writer Henry David Thoreau assiduously recorded natural history 150 years ago, weeds are responding to climate change more rapidly than native plants by dramatically adjusting their flowering time.
Another seven decades of climate change could see substantial changes in South Australia's weeds, with olives, Coolatai grass and wheel cactus among those likely to spread further south as the climate warms and dries.
Species that move fast under climate change may initially outpace the damaging parasites and pathogens that normally inhibit population numbers, as the cane toad (Bufo marinus) has done at its invasion front in Australia.
Native sea urchin (Centrostephanus rodgersii) populations invading Tasmanian waters are being continuously replenished and spread by the southward expansion of the warming East Australian Current under climate change.
Concern for biodiversity under climate change should extend to the potentially harmful effects of native species shifting range.
According to a review by Cascade Sorte and co-researchers, the impacts of shifting native species can be just as great as those of introduced species, with the “potential to seriously affect biological systems”.
Earthworm invasion of North American forests can exacerbate the impacts of droughts and is likely to accelerate the loss of tree species sensitive to climate change.
Evan Larson and co-researchers used tree rings to assess the effects of earthworms on the sugar maple (Acer saccharum) overstory of two deciduous forest stands in northern Minnesota.
The Mediterranean Sea qualifies as a biodiversity hotspot and one of the most climate change impacted seas in the world due to synergies with invasive species and disease.
In a paper reviewing impacts of climate, disease and invasive species, Christophe Lejeusne and co-researchers call the Mediterranean a “sea under siege” and a potential model of global patterns that will occur in the world’s marine environment under climate change.
Carp (Cyprinus carpio) could invade England and Wales by 2050 under climate change, with damaging ecological consequences.
Altogether, six potentially invasive fish species are likely to substantially benefit from global warming over the next 40 years, according to modelling conducted by Rob Britton and colleagues.
Melting glaciers on the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia are opening the way for rats to invade new areas, where they threaten breeding birds.
AJ Cook and colleagues found that 97% of 103 coastal glaciers on South Georgia have retreated, and they are doing so at an increasing rate, from an average 8 metres a year in the 1950s to 35 metres a year at present. Some have retreated more than 1 km, one more than 4 km.
An invasive mussel has contracted significantly southward along the Californian coast despite expectations that it would move poleward under climate change.
In what is one of the largest and most rapid range changes recorded for any species, researchers found that in less than 10 years the Mediterranean mussel (Mytilus galloprovincialis) declined over about one-third (540 km) of its former range.
Any northern outbreaks of three highly aggressive weeds invading south-eastern USA should be eradicated to reduce their risk of range expansion under climate change, according to Bethany Bradley and colleagues.
Under climate change, the invasive Coolatai grass (Hyparrhenia hirta) is likely to spread into new areas, with coastal Queensland, most of NSW, Central and South America, sub-Saharan Africa, Mexico, the Caribbean and south-eastern USA at particular risk.
A rampant garden escapee, Singapore daisy (Wedelia trilobata, now Sphagneticola trilobata) can grow much more efficiently under higher carbon dioxide than a similar native species in China.