Biological control is proposed as a tool useful for ecosystem management and compatible with the goals of often competing interests regarding the restoration and maintenance of ecosystems. We summarize the effects of introduced species on ecosystems in three broad groups: insects, vertebrates, and weeds. We then discuss the role of biological control for each of these groups in the context of ecosystem management and realistic outcomes. Of the three groups, we show that biological control of weeds appears to have the best chance for success in ecosystem management. We provide two case studies to support our ideas and finally discuss future needs and trends including fiscal considerations, cost/benefits associated with biological weed control, and potential funding sources.


Horticulture | Plant Sciences

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