Perspectives in Ecology and Conservation Perspectives in Ecology and Conservation
Research Letters
Assessing the risk of invasion of species in the pet trade in Brazil
Clarissa Alves da Rosaa,, , Rafael Zennib, Sílvia R. Zillerc, Nelson de Almeida Curib, Marcelo Passamanib
a Instituto Fauna Selvagem, Rua 3600, N° 232, 88330-248 Balneário Camboriú, Santa Catarina, Brazil
b Programa de Pós-Graduação em Ecologia Aplicada, Setor de Ecologia, Departamento de Biologia, Universidade Federal de Lavras, Campus Universitário, 37200-000 Lavras, Minas Gerais, Brazil
c Instituto Hórus de Desenvolvimento e Conservação Ambiental, Servidão Cobra Coral, 111 – Campeche, 88.063-513 Florianópolis, SC, Brazil
Received 09 May 2017, Accepted 22 September 2017
Abstract

Biological invasions are a major concern for biodiversity conservation. The release and escape of pet animals are the main sources of mammal invasions. Identifying potential invaders before they are introduced is a key tool for preventing the spread and impact of invasive alien species. Among the tools available for screening potential invaders are risk analysis protocols, which can also be used to assess the risk of species introduced in the past and limit or ban their import or commerce. We aimed to identify potential invasive mammals in the pet trade by applying a risk analysis protocol adapted to Brazil. Six alien mammals sold as pets in Brazil resulted high invasion risk. Rodents resulted the highest risk values. In order to prevent the release of invasive species through the pet trade it is necessary to avoid new introductions based on risk analysis, to identify species pathways, and to combat animal trafficking.

Keywords
Biological invasions, Exotic species, Introduced mammals, Non-native