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We reviewed published, quantitative studies examining the effects of exotic plants in native vegetation on the species richness and abundance of birds and mammals. We asked whether the incursion of exotic plants into native vegetation has led to consistent declines, increases or no changes in bird and mammal species richness and abundance. Bird species richness and abundance tended not to be lower in sites with exotic plants (exotic sites) compared with sites without exotic plants (native sites). However, there are some reported cases of declines in richness, and declines and increases in abundance of birds in exotic sites. While there is not enough evidence to generate broad patterns in relation to species richness of mammals in exotic sites, abundances of individual mammal species demonstrated idiosyncratic responses (either increases, decreases, or no changes) to the incursion of exotic plants. Any differences observed in species richness and abundance of birds and mammals between exotic and native sites are probably due to habitat modifications by exotic plants resulting in changes to vegetation that is important for foraging, protection, and reproduction of the vertebrates. Importantly, our review found no published, quantitative evidence that the incursion of exotic plants into native vegetation leads to the over-abundance of any bird or mammal species. Nevertheless, the results of our review must be viewed as preliminary findings: there is still much to be done to untangle the complex ecological effects of exotic plants on birds and mammals in native vegetation.

Barnes, D.K.A., Hodgson, D.A., Convey, P., Allen, C.S. & Clarke, A. 2006. Incursion and excursion of Antarctic biota: past, present and future. Global Ecology and Biogeography 15: 121-142.
Braithwaite, R.W., Lonsdale, W.M. & Estbergs, J.A. 1989. Alien vegetation and native biota in tropical Australia: the impact of Mimosa pigra. Biological Conservation 48: 189-210.
Brown, P.R., Wallis, R.L., Simmons, D. & Adams, R. 1991. Weeds and wildlife. Plant Protection Quarterly 6: 150-153.
D'Antonio, C.M. & Vitousek, P.M. 1992. Biological invasions of exotic grasses, the grass/fire cycle, and global change. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 23: 63-87.
Ellis, L.M., Crawford, C.S. and Molles, M.C. 1997. Rodent communities in native and exotic riparian vegetation in the middle Rio Grande Valley of Central New Mexico. The Southwestern Naturalist 42: 13-19.
Feare, C.J., Gill, E.L., Carty, P., Carty, H.E. & Ayrton, V.J. 1997. Habitat use by Seychelles Sooty Terns Sterna fuscata and implications for colony management. Biological Conservation 871: 69-76.
Flanders, A.A., Kuvlesky, W.P., Ruthven, D.C., Zaiglin, R.E., Bingham, R.L., Fulbright, T.E., Hernandez, F. and Brennan L.A. 2006. Effects of invasive exotic grasses on South Texas rangeland breeding birds. The Auk 123: 171-182.
Fleishman, E., McDonal, N., Mac Nally, R., Murphy, D.D., Walters, J. and Floyd, T. 2003. Effects of floristics, physiognomy and non-native vegetation on riparian bird communities in a Mojave Desert watershed. Journal of Animal Ecology 72: 484-490.
Fleishman, E., Mac Nally, R. & Murphy, D.D. 2005. Relationships among non-native plants, diversity of plants and butterflies, and adequacy of spatial sampling. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 85: 157-166.
French, K. & Major, R.E. 2001. Effect of an exotic Acacia (Fabaceae) on ant assemblages in South African fynbos. Austral Ecology 26: 303-310.
French, K., Major, R. & Hely, K. 2005. Use of native and exotic garden plants by suburban nectarivorous birds. Biological Conservation 121: 545-559.
Frenot, Y., Chown, S.L., Whinam, J., Selkirk, P., Convey, P., Skotnicki, M. & Bergstrom, D. 2005. Biological invasions in the Antarctic: extent, impacts and implications. Biological Reviews 80: 45-72.
Friend, G.R. 1982. Mammal populations in exotic pine plantations and indigenous eucalypt forests in Gippsland, Victoria. Australian Forestry 45: 3-18.
Gaston, K.J & Spicer, J.I. 2004 Biodiversity: An Introduction. 2nd Edition. Blackwell Science Limited, London.
Greenwood, H., O'Dowd, D.J. & Lake, P.S. 2004. Willow ( Salix x rubens) invasion of the riparian zone in south-eastern Australia: reduced abundance and altered composition of terrestrial arthropods. Diversity and Distributions 10: 485-492.
Herrera, A.M. & Dudley, T.L. 2003. Reduction of riparian arthropod abundance and diversity as a consequence of giant reed ( Arundo donax) invasion. Biological Invasions 5: 167-177.
Hill, S.J., Tung, P.J. & Leishman, M.R. 2005. Exotic plant invasion in an endangered ecological community: the effect of different disturbance types on Cumberland Plain Woodland in Sydney, Australia. Austral Ecology 30: 775-788.
Isacch, J.P., Maceira, N.O., Bo, M.S., Demaria, M.R. and Peluc, S. 2005. Bird-habitat relationship in semi-arid natural grasslands and exotic pastures in the west pampas of Argentina. Journal of Arid Environments 62: 267-283.
Lambrinos, J.G. 2000. The impact of the invasive alien grass Cortaderia jubata (Lemoine) Stapf on an endangered mediterranean-type shrubland in California. Diversity and Distributions 6: 217-231.
Leslie, A.J. & Spotila, J.R. 2001. Alien plant threatens Nile crocodile ( Crocodylus niloticus) breeding in Lake St. Lucia, South Africa. Biological Conservation 98: 347-355.
Lloyd, J.D. & Martin, T.E. 2005. Reproductive success of Chestnut-collared Longspurs in native and exotic grassland. The Condor 107: 363-374.
Low, T. 1999 Feral Future: the Untold Story of Australia's Exotic Invaders. Viking Penguin, Melbourne.
Loyn, R.H. & French, K. 1991. Birds and environmental weeds in south-eastern Australia. Plant Protection Quarterly 6: 137-149.
Mazzotti, F.J., Ostrenko, W. and Smith, A.T. 1981. Effects of the exotic plants Melaleuca quinquenervia and Casuarina equisetifolia on small mammal populations in the eastern Florida Everglades. Florida Scientist 44: 65-71.
Miller, K.E. & Gorchov, D.L. 2004. The invasive shrub, Lonicera maackii, reduces growth and fecundity of perennial forest herbs. Oecologia 139: 359-375.
Murray, B.R. & Dickman, C.R. 1994. Granivory and microhabitat use in Australian desert rodents: are seeds important? Oecologia 99: 216-225.
Ogle, S.M., Reiners, W.A. & Gerow, K.G. 2003. Impacts of exotic annual brome grasses ( Bromus spp.) on ecosystem properties of northern mixed grass prairie. American Midland Naturalist 149: 46-58.
Rolls, E.C. 1969 They All Ran Wild. Angus and Robertson, Sydney.
Sax, D.F. & Gaines, S.D. 2003. Species diversity: from global decreases to local increases. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 18: 561-566.
Schmidt, K.A. & Whelan, C.J. 1999. Effects of exotic Lonicera and Rhamnus on songbird nest predation. Conservation Biology 13: 1502-1506.
Suarez, A.V., Bolger, D.T. & Case, T.J. 1998. Effects of fragmentation and invasion on native ant communities in coastal southern California. Ecology 79: 2041-2056.
Thomson, D. 2005. Measuring the effects of invasive species on the demography of a rare endemic plant. Biological Invasions 7: 615-624.
Usher, M.B. 1988. Biological invasions of nature reserves: a search for generalizations. Biological Conservation 44: 119-135.
Usher, M.B., Kruger, F.J., Macdonald, I.A.W., Loope, L.L. & Brockie, R.E. 1988. The ecology of biological invasions into nature reserves: an introduction. Biological Conservation 44: 1-8.
Vila, M., Tessier, M., Suehs, C.M., Brundu, G., Carta, L., Galanidis, A., Lambdon, P., Manca, M., Medail, F., Moragues, E., Traveset, A., Troumbis, A.Y. & Hulme, P.E. 2006. Local and regional assessments of the impacts of plant invaders on vegetation structure and soil properties of Mediterranean islands. Journal of Biogeography 33: 853-861.
Wernberg, T., Thomsen, M.S., Staehr, P.A. & Pedersen, M.F. 2004. Epibiota communities of the introduced and indigenous macroalgal relatives Sargassum muticum and Halidrys siliquosa in Limfjorden (Denmark). Helgoland Marine Research 58: 154-161.
Whitt, M.B., Prince, H.H. and Cox, R.R. 1999. Avian use of purple loosestrife dominated habitat relative to other vegetation types in a Lake Huron wetland complex. The Wilson Bulletin 111: 105-114.
Wilson, S.D. and Belcher, J.W. 1989. Plant and bird communities of native prairie and introduced Eurasian vegetation in Manitoba, Canada. Conservation Biology 3: 39-44.
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Barnes, D.K.A., Hodgson, D.A., Convey, P., Allen, C.S. & Clarke, A. 2006. Incursion and excursion of Antarctic biota: past, present and future. Global Ecology and Biogeography 15: 121-142.
Braithwaite, R.W., Lonsdale, W.M. & Estbergs, J.A. 1989. Alien vegetation and native biota in tropical Australia: the impact of Mimosa pigra. Biological Conservation 48: 189-210.
Brown, P.R., Wallis, R.L., Simmons, D. & Adams, R. 1991. Weeds and wildlife. Plant Protection Quarterly 6: 150-153.
D'Antonio, C.M. & Vitousek, P.M. 1992. Biological invasions of exotic grasses, the grass/fire cycle, and global change. Annual Review of Ecology and Systematics 23: 63-87.
Ellis, L.M., Crawford, C.S. and Molles, M.C. 1997. Rodent communities in native and exotic riparian vegetation in the middle Rio Grande Valley of Central New Mexico. The Southwestern Naturalist 42: 13-19.
Feare, C.J., Gill, E.L., Carty, P., Carty, H.E. & Ayrton, V.J. 1997. Habitat use by Seychelles Sooty Terns Sterna fuscata and implications for colony management. Biological Conservation 871: 69-76.
Flanders, A.A., Kuvlesky, W.P., Ruthven, D.C., Zaiglin, R.E., Bingham, R.L., Fulbright, T.E., Hernandez, F. and Brennan L.A. 2006. Effects of invasive exotic grasses on South Texas rangeland breeding birds. The Auk 123: 171-182.
Fleishman, E., McDonal, N., Mac Nally, R., Murphy, D.D., Walters, J. and Floyd, T. 2003. Effects of floristics, physiognomy and non-native vegetation on riparian bird communities in a Mojave Desert watershed. Journal of Animal Ecology 72: 484-490.
Fleishman, E., Mac Nally, R. & Murphy, D.D. 2005. Relationships among non-native plants, diversity of plants and butterflies, and adequacy of spatial sampling. Biological Journal of the Linnean Society 85: 157-166.
French, K. & Major, R.E. 2001. Effect of an exotic Acacia (Fabaceae) on ant assemblages in South African fynbos. Austral Ecology 26: 303-310.
French, K., Major, R. & Hely, K. 2005. Use of native and exotic garden plants by suburban nectarivorous birds. Biological Conservation 121: 545-559.
Frenot, Y., Chown, S.L., Whinam, J., Selkirk, P., Convey, P., Skotnicki, M. & Bergstrom, D. 2005. Biological invasions in the Antarctic: extent, impacts and implications. Biological Reviews 80: 45-72.
Friend, G.R. 1982. Mammal populations in exotic pine plantations and indigenous eucalypt forests in Gippsland, Victoria. Australian Forestry 45: 3-18.
Gaston, K.J & Spicer, J.I. 2004 Biodiversity: An Introduction. 2nd Edition. Blackwell Science Limited, London.
Greenwood, H., O'Dowd, D.J. & Lake, P.S. 2004. Willow ( Salix x rubens) invasion of the riparian zone in south-eastern Australia: reduced abundance and altered composition of terrestrial arthropods. Diversity and Distributions 10: 485-492.
Herrera, A.M. & Dudley, T.L. 2003. Reduction of riparian arthropod abundance and diversity as a consequence of giant reed ( Arundo donax) invasion. Biological Invasions 5: 167-177.
Hill, S.J., Tung, P.J. & Leishman, M.R. 2005. Exotic plant invasion in an endangered ecological community: the effect of different disturbance types on Cumberland Plain Woodland in Sydney, Australia. Austral Ecology 30: 775-788.
Isacch, J.P., Maceira, N.O., Bo, M.S., Demaria, M.R. and Peluc, S. 2005. Bird-habitat relationship in semi-arid natural grasslands and exotic pastures in the west pampas of Argentina. Journal of Arid Environments 62: 267-283.
Lambrinos, J.G. 2000. The impact of the invasive alien grass Cortaderia jubata (Lemoine) Stapf on an endangered mediterranean-type shrubland in California. Diversity and Distributions 6: 217-231.
Leslie, A.J. & Spotila, J.R. 2001. Alien plant threatens Nile crocodile ( Crocodylus niloticus) breeding in Lake St. Lucia, South Africa. Biological Conservation 98: 347-355.
Lloyd, J.D. & Martin, T.E. 2005. Reproductive success of Chestnut-collared Longspurs in native and exotic grassland. The Condor 107: 363-374.
Low, T. 1999 Feral Future: the Untold Story of Australia's Exotic Invaders. Viking Penguin, Melbourne.
Loyn, R.H. & French, K. 1991. Birds and environmental weeds in south-eastern Australia. Plant Protection Quarterly 6: 137-149.
Mazzotti, F.J., Ostrenko, W. and Smith, A.T. 1981. Effects of the exotic plants Melaleuca quinquenervia and Casuarina equisetifolia on small mammal populations in the eastern Florida Everglades. Florida Scientist 44: 65-71.
Miller, K.E. & Gorchov, D.L. 2004. The invasive shrub, Lonicera maackii, reduces growth and fecundity of perennial forest herbs. Oecologia 139: 359-375.
Murray, B.R. & Dickman, C.R. 1994. Granivory and microhabitat use in Australian desert rodents: are seeds important? Oecologia 99: 216-225.
Ogle, S.M., Reiners, W.A. & Gerow, K.G. 2003. Impacts of exotic annual brome grasses ( Bromus spp.) on ecosystem properties of northern mixed grass prairie. American Midland Naturalist 149: 46-58.
Rolls, E.C. 1969 They All Ran Wild. Angus and Robertson, Sydney.
Sax, D.F. & Gaines, S.D. 2003. Species diversity: from global decreases to local increases. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 18: 561-566.
Schmidt, K.A. & Whelan, C.J. 1999. Effects of exotic Lonicera and Rhamnus on songbird nest predation. Conservation Biology 13: 1502-1506.
Suarez, A.V., Bolger, D.T. & Case, T.J. 1998. Effects of fragmentation and invasion on native ant communities in coastal southern California. Ecology 79: 2041-2056.
Thomson, D. 2005. Measuring the effects of invasive species on the demography of a rare endemic plant. Biological Invasions 7: 615-624.
Usher, M.B. 1988. Biological invasions of nature reserves: a search for generalizations. Biological Conservation 44: 119-135.
Usher, M.B., Kruger, F.J., Macdonald, I.A.W., Loope, L.L. & Brockie, R.E. 1988. The ecology of biological invasions into nature reserves: an introduction. Biological Conservation 44: 1-8.
Vila, M., Tessier, M., Suehs, C.M., Brundu, G., Carta, L., Galanidis, A., Lambdon, P., Manca, M., Medail, F., Moragues, E., Traveset, A., Troumbis, A.Y. & Hulme, P.E. 2006. Local and regional assessments of the impacts of plant invaders on vegetation structure and soil properties of Mediterranean islands. Journal of Biogeography 33: 853-861.
Wernberg, T., Thomsen, M.S., Staehr, P.A. & Pedersen, M.F. 2004. Epibiota communities of the introduced and indigenous macroalgal relatives Sargassum muticum and Halidrys siliquosa in Limfjorden (Denmark). Helgoland Marine Research 58: 154-161.
Whitt, M.B., Prince, H.H. and Cox, R.R. 1999. Avian use of purple loosestrife dominated habitat relative to other vegetation types in a Lake Huron wetland complex. The Wilson Bulletin 111: 105-114.
Wilson, S.D. and Belcher, J.W. 1989. Plant and bird communities of native prairie and introduced Eurasian vegetation in Manitoba, Canada. Conservation Biology 3: 39-44.
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