Country examples

Countries need to collect and collate information on the presence and distribution of invasive alien species within their country in order the effectively manage the problem, and to report on progress towards achieving Aichi Target 9 of the Convention of Biological Diversity’s Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020. Countries differ widely in the level of existing information on invasive species, and also in the resources and capacity available to generate new data and to collate existing data. Below are some examples of the data collected and collated by countries and the data infrastructure available to support national monitoring.

Existing information for countries to build national invasion monitoring





The Atlas of Living Australia contains more than 50 million occupancy records and information from a wide range of providers (including museums, government departments, community groups and universities) of all known species in Australia. As of July 2015, the Atlas of Living Australia had 81904 records of 363 invasive alien species generated from the Global Invasive Species Information Network. The Atlas also provides a powerful mapping and analysis tool in which species occupancy records can be analysed spatially and queried with any number of hundreds of available layers (layers contain information on climate, resource management, political and social information, soil, topography and vegetation). Using the impact classification scheme (see alien species Impact) these species could then be prioritised according to potential negative impacts on the environment.


Screen Shot 2015-08-13 at 12.58.45 pmThe Cook Islands

The Cook Islands have an online database that includes species occurrence (4213 species as of July 2015) and alien status data for some islands [1]. To develop a national inventory of alien and invasive alien species the Cook Islands need only to extract information on the invasiveness (from ex-situ sources) of these alien species and incorporate this information into the existing database. These species can then be categorised and prioritised based on the magnitude of their negative impacts. In fact the Cook Islands have begun to prioritise invasive alien species. In the Fourth National Report to the CBD [2], the country identifies and reports on the plants (40 species, 6 of serious concern) and animals (22 species, 1 of serious concern) that the Islanders consider to be invasive [1].


South AfricaScreen Shot 2015-08-13 at 2.23.33 pm

South Africa has recently produced a national list of regulated invasive alien species. Within the Alien and Invasive Species Regulations published in 2014 [3], is a National List of Invasive Species (559 species) and a list of prohibited alien species that may not be introduced into the country (560 species).


NorwayNorwegian Biodiversity Info Centre

The Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre (NBIC) provide a good example of how cooperative efforts between NGOs, government agencies and volunteers can lead to substantial country data on alien and invasive alien species. The NBIC offers a data platform for species observations and for monitoring invasive alien species into the future. Launched in 2008, they now have over 10 million species occupancy records, including an invasive alien species inventory. These alien species have also been categorised according to their potential to negatively impact native ecosystems [4, 5].

Referenced material and links

[1] McCormack, G. (2007). Cook Islands Biodiversity Database, Version 2007. 2. Cook Islands Natural Heritage Trust. Retrieved from



[4] Gederaas, L., Moen, T. L., Skjelseth, S., and Larsen, L. K. (eds.). Alien species in Norway– with the Norwegian Black List 2012. The Norwegian Biodiversity Information Centre, Norway.