The status of alien species in Romania

The present situation in Romania (according to the third national report CBD 2005)

A total number of 112 species and clones of alien tree species are records, of which only 6 are invasive: Acer negundo, Ailanthus altisima, Amopha fruticosa, Cytisus scoparius, Fraxinus americana, and Fraxinus pennsylvanica.

For aquatic ecosystems the rate of invasion since the 19th century was estimated at 3-4 years for Black Sea coastal waters and 4-5 years for freshwaters. In all 67 alien species have invaded aquatic systems in Romania (of which 60% marine and 40% freshwater) (Gomoiu et al., 2002).

The impact of several invasive species in the Black Sea is well documented (e.g. Rapana thomasiana, Mnemiopsis leidyi) (Gomoiu et al. 2002). The impact of introduced salmonids (e.g. rainbow trout) in alpine lakes from protected areas was also documented, with a marked decline in amphibians and crustaceans reported.

The acacia plantations were affected during the last 15 years by two species of miner moth of North American origin.

The existing measures targeted at limiting the spread of IAS are limited in scope and sectorial and involve:

  1. Control of ballast water in the Black Sea ports are in place,
  2. There are laboratories for the identification of invasive species, especially insect leaf miners, at all forestry branches in the country;
  3. There is a Central Laboratory of Phytosanitary Quarantine with strict regulations.

The present situation in Romania can be described by:

  • Low public awareness and opposition to government intervention;
  • Shortage and inaccessibility of scientific information (for species identification, risk analysis, detection and mitigation techniques etc.);
  • Absence of clear and agreed priorities for action;
  • ease of introduction and movement (e.g. through the post), inadequate inspection and quarantine;
  • Inadequate monitoring capacity;
  • Lack of effective emergency response measures;
  • Outdated or inadequate legislation;
  • Poor coordination between government agencies, States and other stakeholders.