Protecting threatened Over-seas biodiversity

Focus on invasive alien species in Martinique

From February 10-14, the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) organized a seminar in Martinique on invasive alien species (IAS). The opportunity for our partners to talk about the management actions applied to these species as part of Life BIODIV’OM.

The Martinique, Guyane and Saint-Martin teams from Life BIODIV’OM gathered during the IUCN seminar © E. Sarat / IUCN France 2020

IUCN and the IAS

The IUCN French committee has an initiative on invasive alien species (IAS) in overseas France. These species, plant or animal, are introduced voluntarily or not on the territories and threaten the local biodiversity by acting as a predator or competitor. In the French overseas departments and territories, it is estimated that 53% of species extinctions have been caused by invasive alien species. In addition, 60 of the 100 most invasive alien species in the world are present in the Overseas Territories (IUCN). Among the 370 IAS present in the French overseas territories, animal species such as the Black Rat on many islands or the Green Iguana in Martinique but also plant species such as the Hiptage in Reunion Island or Acacia mangium in Guyana.


Acting as a major threat to the species targeted by LIFE, many actions are implemented in order to better understand the impact of certain species such as the black rat on birds like the Madagascar pond heron in Mayotte, for which predation is not yet proven at present or on the Red-whiskered Bulbulwhich, a bird suspected of acting as a competitor for the Reunion cuckooshrike. Management actions are also carried out, notably on the Black Rat in Martinique and Reunion island in order to protect the nests of Reunion cuckooshrike and White breasted trasher which are predated by these species. These actions really have a strong impact on the protection of endangered species, and in particular have enabled the Reunion cuckooshrike to achieve reproductive success of around 75% against 30% without these actions and to multiply the existing population by 5.

Actions are also being taken against exotic plant invasive species in Guyana such as Acacia mangium and Niaouli, introduced from Australia and which invade the savannas of Guyana.
Thus, the GEPOG of Guyana, the AGRNSM of Saint-Martin and the PNM of Martinique were able to present their problems, discuss and exchange with many experts around the management actions of the IAS set up within the framework of LIFE BIODIV’OM .