Invasive species

Not only tourists travel on holiday.

What’s going on?

Invasive non-native species (INNS) are one of the top 5 causes of decline in biodiversity worldwide. They cost the UK economy £2bn every year, through impacts such as damage and loss of crops, flooding, and additional building costs.


  • The abundance of non-native species is significantly higher in places where tourist activities take place. [source]
  • The congregation of large numbers of people, vehicles, and vessels from geographically diverse areas provide a regular supply of non-native species. [source]
  • Activities such as hiking, mountain biking, and off-road driving can disturb habitats, potentially facilitating species invasion. [source]
  • In the Galapagos, new ant species are arriving all the time, linked to the increase in tourism. These are invasive to local habitats, threatening the survival of native species. [source]
  • Invasive species can be spread through tourism and recreational activities such as through transportation of ballast water, hull fouling of both cruise ships and recreational vessels, outboard motors, water lines, fishing gear, and debris. [source]



Get nature positive

We need business, in every area of tourism, to understand the impact of invasive non-native species and how they affect biodiversity in nature, both locally and globally.

Explore the actions your business can take to get nature positive.

Explore actions for nature