Happy 2015 to you all. In this piece I explore a representative selection of the foreign mammals, birds, insects and plants that our buzzing interdependent hive of globalism are bringing to our doorsteps, whether we like it or not. "Aliens Among Us" traces the invasive lineages and ecological and economic impacts of exotic species brought to Virginia by the pet and nursery industries, by carelessness and indifference, and by pure unknowing accident. The destructive competition waged by exotic species ranks with habitat loss, wildlife trafficking and climate change as a leading force behind the ongoing Sixth Extinction, and it's high time we took these invaders seriously and got behind efforts to enact meaningful federal regulations that could intercept these aliens at the border, before they seize and exploit yet another biome to the detriment of our native wildlife.
William H. Funk
I'm a freelance writer focusing on natural history, conservation, and environmental law, policy and politics.