Project: INVAsive biology of XENopus laevis in Europe: ecology, impact and predictive models.

Xenopus laevis is one of the world’s most widely distributed amphibians with invasive populations that have become established on four continents. Invasions are due to both accidental escape and voluntary release of laboratory animals in many cases. Although impacts of invasive X. laevis on native populations of amphibians and fish have been documented, systematic studies examining the impact of this species on both vertebrate and invertebrate communities are lacking. Moreover, X. laevis has been implicated in the global transmission of disease including chytridiomycosis, a disease cited as one of the principal causes for the global decline in amphibians. Yet, landscape level data on the presence of X. Laevis across Europe are lacking. Alarmingly, a recent study suggested that the invasion potential of X. laevis has been severely underestimated and that many areas, both globally and in Europe, were potentially threatened by invasion. In particular, this species is of serious concern in Europe as it is known to be invasive in at least four countries (France, Portugal, Italy and the U.K.) and the suggested suitable climatic space for X. laevis covers over one million square kilometers, making this species of pan-European concern. INVAXEN aims at better understanding the biology, dispersal patterns, physiology, invasive potential, and impact on local populations, of X. laevis.

Acronym INVAXEN
Duration 01/06/2014 - 30/06/2018
Website visit project website
Network BiodivERsA2
Call BiodivERsA Call 2012-2013 on invasive species and biological invasions

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences Belgium
National Center for Scientific Research and National Museum of Natural History Coordinator France
Foundation of the Faculty of Sciences of Lisbon University Portugal
Stellenbosch University South Africa
Alexander Koenig Research Museum Germany