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The bird trade in Taiwan: an analysis of an Eastern pathway to biological invasion

Su, S; (2016) The bird trade in Taiwan: an analysis of an Eastern pathway to biological invasion. Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The subject of this thesis is the bird trade as a pathway for invasions by alien species to the East Asian island nation of Taiwan. Most previous studies have considered bird invasions in a Western context, but cultural differences imply that drivers of human-mediated invasions in Eastern societies are likely to be different. Therefore, I analyse patterns in the composition of traded alien bird species in Taiwan, and identify characteristics associated with success or failure at different stages of the invasion pathway. Data on the identities, numbers and prices of birds in the Taiwanese cage bird trade were obtained from non-structured interviews with bird shop owners and employees, as described in Chapter 2. In chapter 3, I showed that species with larger native range size, smaller body size, with songs attractive to people, and native to closer regions, are more likely to be traded in Taiwan. In chapter 4, I explore the determinants of the price of bird species for sale in Taiwan, as a proxy for assessing which species in trade are more likely to be introduced into the wild. Chapter 5 analyses characteristics associated with species success in introduction and establishment. Alien species commonly for sale, sold for a longer period in the trade and with attractive songs were more likely to be introduced. Successfully established alien species are also likely to be large-bodied. Chapter 6 explores the important role of environmental suitability in alien environments in establishment success. In addition, I show that species with larger native range sizes tend to have larger alien range sizes in Taiwan. Overall, the results here show that bird species composition for sale in Taiwan is determined by the interaction of species availability and societal demands. The thesis concludes with some suggestions for the current market and future studies.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The bird trade in Taiwan: an analysis of an Eastern pathway to biological invasion
Event: UCL (University College London)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
Keywords: Invasion pathway, Pet bird trade, Taiwan, Alien birds, Phylogenetic regression, Price, Environmental match, Wildlife trade
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences > Genetics, Evolution and Environment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1476926
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