How interesting is the reaction.
Quite often you find yourself offending people, just by the nature of your arguments.
Often times the fact that you come across as an advocate for reconsidering our hard stand on what specie should live or not upset people. ‘What you mean? what about Lantana? Are you saying that we should let go of that evil plant to take over our wonderful landscape?’
uhmm, is never an easy answer.
In the case of Lantana there is plenty of evidence by now that we should think twice before arming ourselves with splatter guns loaded of glyphosate to ‘control’ the spread, but the question is not necessarily easily dealt with examples from one or another specie. The question implies that if we let go of management we would loose diversity. Often enough you get accused of fostering botanical darwinism by the more articulates.
You strongly object to darwinism, and indeed the concept is dated and found limping in the face of evidence of the like of Margulis’ endosymbiotic theory.
Life depends on diversity. Some might even argue life is the motor of biodiversity.
But let’s step back. Below is a chapter from Biodiversity: peak nature? by Stephanie Mills:
The Wild Roots of Agriculture
Every plant, animal, or insect that we depend on for food and fiber descended from a wild ancestor. We are heavily dependent on just a handful of domesticated plants and animals. Nine-tenths of global livestock production is made up of only fifteen mammal and bird species, and three-quarters of our food supply comes from only twelve plant species. Raised in monocultures and selectively bred for hundreds of years, these domesticated plants and animals are much less resilient to parasites and diseases than their wild ancestors. The Irish potato blight of 1845–1852 wiped out the single crop that multitudes of people had come to depend on, helping kill or exile millions. Given such vulnerability, we need to preserve not only the diversity of plants and livestock developed by the farmers and gardeners around the world who bred varieties adapted to their specific bioregions, but also the diversity of the wild lands where these stocks originated as reservoirs of genetic diversity. The wild matrix bordering fields and human settlements harbored animals that maintained ecological balances important to human health. By converting wild land to cropland, and by battling organisms that consume or compete with crops and livestock, agriculture reduces biodiversity. Habitat conversion can eliminate predatory animals, which, relative to their prey, are few in number and not prolific. And in the absence of predators, populations of prey species—some of which, like rodents, can harbor human infectious disease—may irrupt.