It's Invasive Species Week, and people across the UK are talking about this pressing issue. Non-native species, which are those brought to the UK after it was isolated by rising sea levels, aren't always harmful. But if they negatively impact the environment, the economy, or human health, then they're deemed invasive.
These species can cause a range of problems for native wildlife, such as disease, predation, and competition for resources. Each year, Invasive Species Week aims to raise awareness about these species and explore ways to minimise their negative impact. The Non-Native Species Secretariat - the leading body on the topic - have a great programme of events this year.
Here in Hampshire, one way in which we're addressing the issue is through our Tackling Invasives project. Forming part of the Watercress and Winterbournes Landscape Partnership Scheme, it focuses on the invasive species in our local chalk streams. Species like American mink and Himalayan balsam are putting pressure on native wildlife - could you help stop their spread?