In 2006, the researchers involved in the first phase of the Canadian Aquatic Invasive Species Network (CAISN) began exploring the aquatic invasive species (AIS) issue with the goal of bettering our understanding of the invasion process, minimizing the impact of existing invasion, preventing or limiting the impact of future invasions, and training Highly Qualified Personnel (HQP). While the success of the network was noticed both nationally and internationally, the CAISN team recognized key gaps that needed to be filled if they were to fully understand the problems associated with AIS and their cost to society and nature.
With funding from Canada's Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the CAISN team will build on its foundations, continuing exploration in the field of AIS research. CAISN's new scope of research will focus on four core themes:
- Early Detection
- Rapid Response
- AIS as Part of Multiple Stressors
- Reducing Uncertainty in Prediction and Management
Selected projects under each theme are meant to further our understanding of the AIS issue, with particular focus on early detection and rapid response. What's more, CAISN will be conducting its first series of research efforts in the Arctic, where increased shipping, due in part to climate change, has put it at greater risk than ever before for aquatic invasion.