Abstract for:Dynamic Analysis of the Lionfish Diffusion in the Caribbean Sea and Development of a Policy Game
The lionfish is one of the worst marine invaders of all time. The lack of predators and their rapid reproduction process lead them spread throughout the Caribbean Sea within only 30 years. The beautiful but dangerous lionfish highly influences the invaded areas: the diversity of reef fish declines rapidly and the whole ecosystem is disrupted. To fight the lionfish invasion, an understanding of its historic development is required. A System Dynamics model is developed to help explaining the rapid and successful diffusion of the lionfish in the Caribbean Sea and parts of the Atlantic Ocean. The explanatory model considers the reproduction process and explains the mechanisms of the lionfish larval dispersal by natural water movements. The policy model and the policy game provide a dynamic framework for the discussion of potential countermeasures and present the importance of harmonized policies of interdependent decision makers. The model builds a foundation for understanding and discussing the problem. The relevance of the model could be increased by further research focusing on the validation of model assumptions and addition of policies on a more granular level. This paper is supplemented by the model interface and integrated policy game.