In addition to wildlife, attention should be paid to so-called alien species, which are those species transported by humans either voluntarily or accidentally outside their area of origin.
Travel is a time of light-heartedness and enrichment, but it’s also one of the main entry routes for alien species.
For instance, the earth gets stuck under the soles ofyour boots contains an average 14,000 fungal cells, one million bacteria and two or three plant seeds. If you take fresh fruit with you, you are transferring mites, insect larvae and bacteria in large quantities from one country to another.
All this unconsciously, but there are plenty of cases of travellers voluntarily transporting alien species.The small chameleon bought at the Indian village market, the pair of stick insects to give to your entomologist friend, the Asian bulbs or bonsai trees to plant in your garden are all instances of transport and intentional introduction of alien species.
So before you hit the road, think about your role as a voluntary or accidental carrier, get informed and travel responsibly.
Rules of the conscious traveller
- Get informed on the risks of introducing invasive alien species
- Learn about the regulations governing the transport of plants and animals from one country to another
- Find out if invasive alien species are present in the places you visit and what the main risks are