The MarInvaders web application is an interactive tool that combines and visualizes
data on marine invasive species from existing databases. It enables the user to
query information per
marine ecoregion, and create maps that distinguish alien
and natives distributions of a species. MarInvaders aims to facilitate the
development of large-scale impact assessments of marine invasive species.
The MarInvaders web application is developed and maintained by the
of the IndEcol
Research Group at the
Norwegian University of Science and Technology
in Trondheim, Norway.
The MarInvaders web application currently integrates data on marine (invasive)
species from four existing databases: OBIS ,
GISD , and a database
Molnar et al.
After the user selects an ecoregion, the OBIS API v3
is used to query all species for which there is occurrence data within that ecoregion
in the OBIS database. Each species is then searched for in the latter three databases
to potentially identify as alien. The WoRMS REST webservice
is used to find the establishmentMeans –whether the species is flagged as alien or not-, whereas all
species included in the GISD and Molnar databases as per definition alien.
These databases provide geographical distributions on different scales. The Molnar distributions
are on a marine ecoregion level. Most of the WoRMS distributions are either IHO Sea Areas,
Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZ), or an intersect of these, and have a Marine Regions Geographic
Identifier (MRGID) is easily matched to a marine ecoregion by the use of shapefiles.
GISD does not provide such MRGID’s but instead gives only quantitative distributions,
such as country names. Most of these could still be matched to existing shapefiles
by comparing names, and subsequently be matched to marine ecoregions. All the distributions
that could not automatically be matched were searched for manually and matched to one or more marine ecoregions.
How to use
To get started, click the ecoregion of interest on the map. All information on this selected
ecoregion (now blue on the map) is depicted in the information tab.
Information is given about in which Province and Realm
the ecoregion lies, and what its corresponding
MRGID is. The total Number of species within the ecoregion for which OBIS holds occurrence data,
the number of species that were flagged as Alien in this ecoregion, and the number of native species
in this ecoregion that have invasive species listed as a threat by the IUCN Red List. These species
are listed under the tabs Alien, Threatened, and OBIS. Their taxonomic name is given, as well
as their AphiaID (the identifier used by WoRMS), and the source where it was reported as alien or threatened.
When clicking on a species’ name, its distributions show up on the world map. The ecoregions for which
there is occurrence data in OBIS are depicted in blue. Of those, the regions that were flagged as
alien are depicted in red. Areas for which there is conflicting information (e.g. Molnar states
the species is alien, but it was not flagged in WoRMS) are depicted in yellow (named “Both”).