March 17, 2012
-- Many of Ireland's native species are now under threat as foreign species introduced to the Green Isle offer competition.
A new study, published in the journal Biological Invasions, found that if the problem persists, many of the native will die out in at least 80 percent of their habitat.
"The introduction of alien mammals to Ireland over the last 100 years has had major detrimental effects, threatening our indigenous habitats and species," said Ian Montgomery, a researcher from the School of Biological Sciences at Queen’s University who led the study.
The domestic cat-sized pine martin belongs to the mustelid family, which also includes badgers, minks, otters, weasels and wolverines.
Although the pine marten has plenty of animal predators, such as certain birds of prey, humans pose the biggest threat.
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