Biosecurity to slow the spread of invasive non-native species

Lead Research Organisation: University of Leeds
Department Name: Inst of Integrative & Comparative Biolog

Abstract

Invasive Non Native Species (INNS) threaten ecosystem services, with increasing economic costs (~£1.7bn pa to GB). Freshwaters ecosystems are particularly vulnerable to the spread of INNS through trade, transport and recreation. E.g. zebra mussels block water pipes, salmon lice damage fish stocks, floating pennywort disrupts navigation and can lead to flooding. Once INNS become established it is often impractical and expensive to manage them. Our most effective response is robust biosecurity to prevent their introduction and spread, with new EU legislation on Invasive Alien Species 2015 emphasising management of pathways for introduction.
In 2010, DEFRA launched the "Check Clean Dry" campaign, to encourage people to check, clean and dry equipment to kill potential "hitchhiking" INNS and minimise their spread. However, tests of the effectiveness of this treatment showed that most of the species on the EAs "least wanted" list that in fact survived several days' drying. We found that soaking equipment in hand-hot water (450 C) caused increased mortality (>95%, Anderson et al. 2015). This treatment has been incorporated into the biosecurity guidance of the EA and the GB Non Native Species Secretariat, but further development is needed.
KNOWLEDGE GAPS. The EA have identified that the lack of pragmatic advice that they can offer staff and the public, coupled with poor understanding with regards the efficacy of these methods, is undermining their ability to manage this risk. It is essential that the biosecurity
advice the EA adopts and promotes is effective against the broadest range of risks possible, namely invasive non-native plants and animals, and the diseases and parasites that impact plants and animals. The EA are about to embark on a programme of facilities upgrades across the business. They need to know what facilities represent an efficient and costeffective use of public money. Specifically, they need to know the efficacy of hot-water treatment at lower temperatures or for shorter durations; what other methods exist, and what efficacy they have against a range of threats (animals, plants, diseases). This evidence base will allow them to apply a level of biosecurity that is appropriate for the risk as well as
enhancing the information they provide to their customer.
AIMS
1. Develop effective and pragmatic biosecurity practices to reduce the spread of invasive animals, plants, parasites and pathogens.
2. Improve cost effectiveness and ease of use by developing a tiered approach applicable to the risks of invaders and resources available at different sites/organisations
3. Assess the efficacy of biosecurity training within the EA by evaluating staff awareness and changes in behaviour.
4. Develop evidence-based interventions to encourage uptake and spread of biosecurity practice.
METHODS The student will develop an interdisciplinary approach. Lab and field trials will be used to develop and test biosecurity protocols for high risk invasive plants, animals and parasites identified by the EA. Data analysis will be in R. Evaluation of training will use existing EA baseline datasets as well as quantitative (survey questionnaires) and qualitative (semi-structured interviews) social research methods. Qualitative analysis will be conducted using NVivo. By working with the partner from design through to output, the project will lead to improved biosecurity across the EA and its customers and will inform INNS policy in the UK.
 
Description We have tested and identify disinfectant treatments that would be effective for the general public and fieldworker to use to prevent the accidental spread of the highly invasive killer shrimp
Exploitation Route A range of stakeholders, including governmental bodies, private sector water companies and fieldworkers have shown interest in this work via informal emails and have highlighted how this work shall aid in the provisioning and funding of disinfectant stations and implementation of disinfectant biosecurity protocols.
Sectors Environment,Leisure Activities, including Sports, Recreation and Tourism,Government, Democracy and Justice,Transport,Other

URL http://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-020-58058-8
 
Description Designing and providing in-person biosecurity training for Yorkshire Wildlife Trust volunteers
Geographic Reach Local/Municipal/Regional 
Policy Influence Type Influenced training of practitioners or researchers
Impact Jointly organised and ran in-person training session for Yorkshire Wildlife Trust (YWT) volunteers, including presentations, exercises and practical application of biosecurity practices learnt. This training was then further embedded into YWT for both staff and volunteers.
 
Description CASE Partner: Environment Agency 
Organisation Environment Agency
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Public 
PI Contribution Case Partner of this studentship is the Environment Agency, since the commencement of the PhD. I have designed all the studies, collection and analysis of data and write up of findings, both in scientific format and for other stakeholders. Input from the case partner has been evident throughout the PhD in all these stages, especially in experimental focus and design. Information and results provided and presented to CASE Partner.
Collaborator Contribution Financial input for PhD. Input into all experimental focus and designs. Large input of 'in-kind' input for one chapter of the PhD, a study focusing on the use of hot water spray machine as a means of biosecurity practice. This 'in-kind' input involved access to a hot water pressure spray machine at an EA site and use of said machine, with assistance from staff. Invitation to EA event/s for PhD Students funded by them to highlight research and increase impact and dissemination. Enhanced networking opportunity through contacts in the sector/field.
Impact On-going biosecurity research with findings to be published (aiming for) 2019. Publications shall then aim to inform general practice both within the EA and their biosecurity advice to other stakeholders.
Start Year 2016
 
Description CASE Partner: South West Water 
Organisation South West Water Ltd
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Case Partner of this studentship is the Environment Agency, officially since January 2019. I have designed all the studies, collection and analysis of data and write up of findings, both in scientific format and for other stakeholders. Information and results provided and presented to CASE Partner.
Collaborator Contribution Financial input for PhD. Recent collaboration, potential experimental design input into future experiments, write ups and information dissemination. Invitation to Water Company meetings and conferences surrounding the issue of invasive species: opportunities to network and highlight findings of work.
Impact .
Start Year 2019
 
Description Collaborative Biosecurity Experiment with another PhD Student from Ireland 
Organisation Queen's University Belfast
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Collaborative study with PhD Student/s from Queen's University Belfast. Study focused on the biosecurity of certain invasive alien species, some of which are not present in Ireland and therefore experimentation is not possible in Ireland, however was possible at the University of Leeds. Experimental design was jointly developed and experiments conducted jointly. Analysis and write up to be completely predominantly by myself for one experiment and by the other student for the second experiment, both aiming to be published.
Collaborator Contribution Collaborative study with PhD Student/s from Queen's University Belfast. Study focused on the biosecurity of certain invasive alien species, some of which are not present in Ireland and therefore experimentation is not possible in Ireland, however was possible at the University of Leeds. Experimental design was jointly developed and experiments conducted jointly. Analysis and write up to be completely predominantly by myself for one experiment and by the other student for the second experiment, both aiming to be published.
Impact Analysis of results is currently being run.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Stakeholder Workshop - Training and Stakeholder Perception Data Collection 
Organisation Institute of Technology Sligo
Country Ireland 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Collaborator Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Impact Training for a range of stakeholder attendees, and potentially further impact as part of the training is using an e-Learning platform which can then be used by attendees to train other individuals not present. Data collected of stakeholders perceptions of biosecurity barriers, to be used in a publication.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Stakeholder Workshop - Training and Stakeholder Perception Data Collection 
Organisation Queen's University Belfast
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Collaborator Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Impact Training for a range of stakeholder attendees, and potentially further impact as part of the training is using an e-Learning platform which can then be used by attendees to train other individuals not present. Data collected of stakeholders perceptions of biosecurity barriers, to be used in a publication.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Stakeholder Workshop - Training and Stakeholder Perception Data Collection 
Organisation University College London
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Collaborator Contribution A two day workshop was organised, predominantly by collaborator at Institute of Technology Sligo (IoTS), with assistance from others from Queens University Belfast (QUB), myself and two other PhD (University of Leeds (UoL), and University College London (UCL) travelled to Ireland to help run the workshop, all giving talks about topics surrounding invasive species, impacts, management and prevention of spread (biosecurity). Workshops were run to generate data from the attendees, with the aim of writing this up as a publication following the workshop. This publication is to be jointly wrote up, predominantly between the IoTS student, UoL students (2), and UCL student.
Impact Training for a range of stakeholder attendees, and potentially further impact as part of the training is using an e-Learning platform which can then be used by attendees to train other individuals not present. Data collected of stakeholders perceptions of biosecurity barriers, to be used in a publication.
Start Year 2018
 
Description BES Specalist Group Meeting - Gave Talk on one of PhD Chapters 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Invasion Science: Connecting research, management and policy. Text from webpage: [start] The emphasis of this symposium will be on connecting people, sharing ideas and building a foundation for better collaboration between 'pure' and 'applied' invasion scientists.

The programme will include 3 keynote speakers drawn from different invasion science sectors. We are also offering 12 x 5-minute 'lightning talk' slots for oral presentations and an afternoon poster session. The talks and posters will be focused on research that informs invasive species management and/or policy. Talk and poster abstracts can be submitted as part of the registration process.

The programme will include two workshop sessions:
Workshop 1: Assessing upcoming issues in invasion science - addressing policy needs with research
Workshop 2: How to address gaps between pure & applied invasion science [end]

I gave a lightning talk here about the active research I am undertaking looking at awareness and understanding of biosecurity and associated vectors. This is a social science based chapter of the interdisciplinary PhD. The topic and findings were well received and interest was stated for this to be developed both to assess other stakeholders as well as transferable into a training platform for biosecurity for a range of stakeholders.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.britishecologicalsociety.org/event/invasion-science-connecting-research-management-polic...
 
Description General public Talk: Upper Wharfedale Field Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Upper Wharfedale Field Society Talk, January 2020.
50 minute talk followed by questions and discussion at Grassington Town Hall
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://uwfs.org.uk/
 
Description International conference Talk - British Ecological Society 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Talk at the British Ecological Society Annual Meeting, Belfast, December 2019.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL https://www.britishecologicalsociety.org/events/annual-meeting-2019/
 
Description International conference of Aquatic Invasive Species Talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Gave two talks at the international conference aquatic invasive species (ICAIS) in Montreal, Canada, October 2019.

Talk titles:
Developing Practical Biosecurity Recommendations for the use of High Pressure Hot Water Spray Machines
Does Biosecurity Training Work? Applying the Concept of Hazard Perception to Assess Fieldworkers' Ability to Detect Biosecurity Hazards
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL https://www.icais.org/
 
Description London Freshwater Group Meeting Talk 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Invited to present at the London Freshwater Group Annual Conference
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL http://www.londonfreshwatergroup.co.uk
 
Description NERC UnEarthed/Into The Blue 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact Ran a stall at the NERC events run at Manchester and Edinburgh in running for 6 and 4 days, respectively in 2016/7. These events were aimed at science engagement with the general public; a large amount of attendees were children, however there was a range of attendees all the way up to pensioners, estimated to be several thousand of persons over the duration of the event. We had a stall talking to people about invasive species, their impacts, how they are spread and how they can be accidentally spread in the environment by everyday activities. This then enabled us to talk to people about biosecurity which are ways people can help stop or limit the spread of invasive species and therefore limit their impacts on our environment. We had tanks of invasive aquatic species on display including signal crayfish, killer shrimp and chinese mitten crab and invited all questions about any of the above topics. After attendees went around the event they were invited to leave post-it notes about what they have learnt and what they were interested in and several notes referred to our stall.
URL: http://unearthed.nerc.ac.uk/; http://intotheblue.nerc.ac.uk/
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2016,2017
URL http://intotheblue.nerc.ac.uk/
 
Description Presenting Poster at NeoBiota Conference 2018 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact NeoBiota Conference 2018 at Dublin, Ireland. Presented a Poster during one day of this conference, including poster sessions and talking to other academics, students, practitioners, and other stakeholders present.

Poster tweet: https://twitter.com/stephjbradbeer/status/1037269108239290369
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL https://www.eiseverywhere.com/ehome/166837/383086/
 
Description Univeristy of Leeds Sustainability Conference 2017 
Form Of Engagement Activity A talk or presentation
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Postgraduate students
Results and Impact Presented a poster and gave a talk at the University of Leeds Student Sustainability Conference 2017.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://2ej3yy3dhmmm499wwc3l4n36.wpengine.netdna-cdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Conference-public...