The Round Goby
Invasive species are being recognized every day throughout the world. I suppose the main question would be why some non-native species are alien and some invasive? Invasive species are defined as an alien species whose introduction does or is likely to alter the ecosystem or economy in a negative way. Invasive species are not considered invasive unless causing harm and has originated from a different area. The invasion usually begins with an organism overpopulating and rapidly consuming resources. Usually, humans are involved in the introduction of invasive species. Some of the ways we help is by bringing them overseas on our cargo ships and passenger ships. Invasive species cause harm by overpopulating and outcompeting the native species. There are many ideas to stop invasive species, but the most common is to use pesticides to harm and kill the invasive species. Although many have introduced a different species that devours the invasive species. Some examples of invasive species are the notorious Purple Loosestrife, the destructive Japanese beetle, and the disgusting Round Goby.
The Round Goby is an aquatic fish that is native to the Black and Caspian Sea watershed (located in Eurasia). The climate of this area is normally temperate, and the average air temperature is 10.75 degrees Celsius. The geography of these area highland areas surrounding the world’s largest enclosed water body. The Round Goby usually eats mollusks and small fish/fish eggs. In the invaded area, it is eaten by the Lake Eerie Water snake (this is the only consume that depends on the Round Goby for nutrients). The niche it plays in its natural environment is that it takes nutrients from the environment and uses the aquatic plants for shelter.
The scientific name for the Round Goby is Neogobious Melanostomus. Its appearance is characterized by its muddy brown color with black spots it is similar to the sculpin; the only difference is that the Round Goby has a fused pelvic fin. Its behavior is characterized by its aggressiveness towards native fish and competitiveness for food.
The Round Goby was introduced into the Great Lakes watershed in the 1990’s. Since then, it has reproduced rapidly. The climate of this region is temperate and the geography is great lakes with sand dunes scattered throughout the coasts. The Round Goby was introduced into the Great Lakes watershed by a European cargo ship emptying its ballast tanks.
In its natural habitat, the Round Goby has a role and functions well. But when in the Great Lakes watershed it causes a lot of distress. Some the ways the Round Goby causes distress are that it eats native fish eggs. It also eats native fish “food” and takes native fish “shelter.” Not to mention the economic stress this fish causes. I estimate that two million dollars have been spent on the economic problems caused by this fish. Scientists are trying to control the Round Goby by using pesticides. They are also informing fishermen to identify and kill the round Goby. One of the Round Gobies major food source is human fish bait. Scientists also urge fishermen to dispose of unwanted bait on land.
Invasive species are found throughout the world. In their natural habitat, they cause no harm, but as invasive species they can cause harm by overpopulating and rapidly consuming food. The Round Goby is invasive species that causes distress in the Great Lakes watershed. Scientists are most commonly using pesticides to control the Round Goby, hopefully they be successful.