Greve, M., von der Meden, C.E.O., Janion-Scheepers, C. (2020). Biological Invasions in South Africa’s Offshore Sub-Antarctic Territories. In: van Wilgen, B., Measey, J., Richardson, D., Wilson, J., Zengeya, T. (eds) Biological Invasions in South Africa. Invading Nature - Springer Series in Invasion Ecology, vol 14. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-32394-3_8
The sub-Antarctic Prince Edward Islands (PEIs) constitute South Africa’s most remote territory. Despite this, they have not been spared from biological invasions. Here, we review what is known about invasions to the PEIs for terrestrial taxa (vertebrates, invertebrates, plants and microbes), freshwater taxa and marine taxa. Currently, Marion Island is home to 46 alien species, of which 29 are known to be invasive (i.e. they are alien species that have established and spread on the island). Prince Edward Island, which has no permanent human settlement and is visited only infrequently, has significantly fewer alien species: only eight alien species are known from Prince Edward Island, of which seven are known to be invasive. The House Mouse (Mus musculus), which occurs on Marion Island, can be considered the most detrimental invader to the islands; it impacts on plants, insects and seabirds, which result in changes to ecosystem functioning. The impacts of other terrestrial invaders are less well understood. At present, no invasive freshwater or marine taxa are known from the PEIs. We conclude by discussing how invasion threats to the PEIs are changing and how the amelioration of the climate of the islands may increase invasion threats to both terrestrial and marine habitats.