Abstract for: Dynamic Modelling of the Lionfish Invasion in the Caribbean Sea and Atlantic Ocean

The lionfish is one of the worst marine invaders of all time. The lack of predators and their rapid reproduction process lead them spread all over 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 explanation of its historic development is mandatory. The System Dynamics model helps to explain the rapid and successful diffusion of the lionfish throughout the Caribbean Sea and 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 to understand the and discuss the problem. Further research projects are necessary to strengthen and extend the model.