UC Davis Agricultural and Resource Economics

Heidi J. Albers, Oregon State University

Spatial-dynamic management of invasive species in a river network: stochastic species dispersal and native-invasive species competition

Date and Location

Tuesday, May 15, 2012, 4:10 PM - 5:30 PM
ARE Conference Room, 2102 Social Sciences and Humanities


The bio-economic decision model explored here finds optimal spatial patterns and dynamic pathways of invasive species management in a river network. The biological side of the model builds off of ecological research on spatial processes of species dispersal and on native-invasive species competition, with both ecological aspects containing stochastic elements. The numerical solution technique is being developed in collaboration with computer engineers through an initiative on Computational Sustainability. Given the spatial connections in the river system, the optimal policies perform better than both popular reach-specific policies and the treatment of the leading edge of the invasion. Policies vary with the characteristics of the native and invasive species' dispersal and habitat site-competition parameters. Due to the ecological processes involved, both the pattern of the invaded reaches and the patterns of native and empty habitat sites contribute significantly to the optimal policy. The spatially explicit and stochastic framework also finds cases in which long-distance spread, or "spotting" beyond the invaded frontier, occurs.

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