Quantitative analysis of spatial patterns of marine invasions for North America: establishing a national baseline and database

Principal Investigator:

Gregory M. Ruiz

Start/End Year:

2003 - 2007


Smithsonian Environmental Research Center

Co-Principal Investigator:

Jeffrey A. Crooks, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center; Anson H. Hines, Smithsonian Environmental Research Center


The overall objective is to measure quantitatively the spatial and temporal patterns of coastal invasions. We propose to establish a national baseline of data that measure invasion attributes by location (including geographic region or latitude), taxonomic group, source region, vector, and date of arrival. Our specific objectives are: * To establish a standardized, quantitative baseline of survey data for all coasts of North America; * To make available extensive geographically-referenced data from the surveys, through expansion of our online information system (NEMESIS), which includes detailed information for ~400 non-native marine species; * To test for differences in the extent of invasions among coasts and by latitude; * To test for a correlation among bays in the number of invasions with (a) the number of ship arrivals, as well as other measures of vector activity, among bays and (b) environmental and biological characteristics of the bays.

Related Publications:

Chang, AL; Carlton, JT; Brown, CW; Ruiz, GM. 2020. Down the up staircase: Equatorward march of a cold-water ascidian and broader implications for invasion ecology Diversity and Distributions26(7):881 -896. doi:10.1111/ddi.13055. UM-SG-RS-2020-16.

Chang, AL; Brown, CW; Crooks, JA; Ruiz, GM. 2018. Dry and wet periods drive rapid shifts in community assembly in an estuarine ecosystem Global Change Biology24(2):627 -642. doi:10.1111/gcb.13972. UM-SG-RS-2018-08.

Chang, AL; Brown, CW; Crooks, JA; Ruiz, GM. 2018. Dry and wet periods drive rapid shifts in community assembly in an estuarine ecosystem. Global Change Biology24(2):E627 -E642. doi:10.1111/gcb.13972. UM-SG-RS-2018-08.

Blum, JC; Chang, AL; Liljesthrom, M; Schenk, ME; Steinberg, MK; Ruiz, GM. 2007. The non-native solitary ascidian Ciona intestinalis (L.) depresses species richness. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology342(1):5 -14. doi:10.1016/j.jembe.2006.10.010. UM-SG-RS-2007-03.

Bullard, SG; Lambert, G; Carman, MR; Byrnes, J; Whitlatch, RB; Ruiz, G; Miller, RJ; Harris, L; Valentine, PC; Collie, JS; Pederson, J; McNaught, DC; Cohen, AN; Asch, RG; Dijkstra, J; Heinonen, K. 2007. The colonial ascidian Didemnum sp A: Current distribution, basic biology and potential threat to marine communities of the northeast and west coasts of North America. Journal of Experimental Marine Biology and Ecology342(1):99 -108. doi:10.1016/j.jembe.2006.10.020. UM-SG-RS-2007-04.

McCann, LD; Hitchcock, NG; Winston, JE; Ruiz, GM. 2007. Non-native bryozoans in coastal embayments of the Southern United States: New records for the western Atlantic. Bulletin of Marine Science80(2):319 -342. UM-SG-RS-2007-19.

Lambert, G. 2005. First North American record of the ascidian Perophora japonica. Journal of the Marine Biological Association of the United Kingdom85(4):1011 -1012. doi:10.1017/S002531540501204X. UM-SG-RS-2005-11.

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