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Report of the ICES Working Group on Introductions and Transfers of Marine Organisms (WGITMO), 19-21 March 2014 Palanga, Lithuania
ICES (2014). Report of the ICES Working Group on Introductions and Transfers of Marine Organisms (WGITMO), 19-21 March 2014 Palanga, Lithuania. CM Documents - ICES, 2014/ACOM:32. ICES: Copenhagen. 259 pp.
Part of: ICES CM Documents - ICES. ICES: Copenhagen. ISSN 1015-4744

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Abstract
    The 2014 meeting of the ICES Working Group on Introductions and Transfers of Ma-rine Organisms (WGITMO) was held in Palanga, Lithuania during 19-21. March with Sergej Olenin as host and Henn Ojaveer as chair. The meeting was attended by partic-ipants from 22 countries. The physical participants were from Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Sweden, Ukraine and United Kingdom while United States participated over Skype and Croatia, Israel, Poland and Spain contrib-uted by correspondence. The meeting was also attended by the EU and CIESM repre-sentative. It was the 40th meeting of this expert group. The objectives of the meeting were to update information and discuss several aspects related to the introduction of alien species. The meeting dealt in more details with the ‘Information system on aquatic non-indigenous and cryptogenic species’ (AquaNIS) and whether/how to use this platform to further reporting to WGITMO purposes, fouling of artificial structures by alien species, how to better address emerging ICES strategic topics (climate impacts, Arctic research) and cooperation with CIESM and PICES. Importantly, the group also dedicated time for addressing the MSFD D2 is-sues and finalized the species alert report on Ensis directus. As usual, sufficient time was devoted to presentations of national reports and exchange of knowledge and information (e.g. with the Mediterranean Sea and the Ponto-Caspian region). The approach taken during the meeting facilitated presentations and discussions on the issues of relevance related to the Terms of References, but also a few generic and strategically important issues relevant to bioinvasions in general. The meeting started as a full-day joint meeting with the Working Group on Ballast and Other Ship Vec-tors (WGBOSV) during which issues of common interest were addressed. For the next meeting, the joint meeting is also planned to last one full day. For some Terms of Reference a more detailed presentation was given during the meeting and a short overview of the information and subsequent discussion is pro-vided in the report at the end of each section. The report is structured so that each Term of Reference is dealt with in sequential order. The main body of the report con-tains summaries of the presentations and discussions with the more detailed docu-ments being contained in the Annexes. The group progressed in each of the Term of Reference by either completing the task or clearly identifying and agreeing on the intersessional activities required to finalize the work. Intersessional work is inherently an integral component of future work for WGITMO. To share the workload, several group members were asked to lead some specific tasks. WGITMO suggests AquaNIS to substitute the present data-reporting format (xls file) and to be used beginning 2015 as an online reporting platform for new species inva-sions and secondary spread of already existing invasions in ICES countries and else-where (e.g. CIESM and PICES regions).

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