Invasive Species Research Paper

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Zebra mussels, originally from the Caspian Sea, were introduced to the U.S. Great Lakes region in 1988, and have inhabited our lakes and streams ever since (Ballaro and Morley 1). After just a few years, an entire lake or stream can be taken over by zebra mussels or other invasive species. In recent years, zebra mussels have found their way to many of our Minnesota lakes along with Eurasian milfoil. Our environment has been both negatively and positively changed by invasive species. This paper will give the definition of invasive species, and explain the factors that make a species invasive.
Depending on the different environment that a species is introduced to, the species’ characteristics will determine whether or not it will be invasive, helpful, or just a non-native species. An invasive species is a species that is introduced to a new environment, either on purpose, or by accident, and causes harm to our environment, economy, and health (Ballaro and Morley 1). A non-native species is a species that lives outside of its natural habitat, but does not negatively impact its new environment. A native species is a species that has thrived in a region for thousands of years without being accidentally, or intentionally introduced (Ballaro and Morley 1).
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Invasive species get their name because they can spread at extremely fast rates, and they begin to flourish in their new, non-native ecosystems. Some people believe that a plant or animal is extremely harmful to their environment, while others think the complete opposite. For example, the white-tailed deer causes damage to many farmers’ crops and is a nuisance to some farmers. Other people feel that white-tailed deer are an important part of the ecosystem. Deer are important to some people because they traditionally hunt them, or use them as food for their

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