Regulation (EU) No 1143/2014 on the Prevention and Management of the Introduction and Spread of Invasive Alien Species provides for a set of restrictions and measures to be undertaken across the EU for invasive alien species (IAS) list of Union concern. Such species are subject to restrictions on their keeping, importation, sale, breeding and growing, in addition to measures for their early detection, eradication or management.
As a commercial owner/keeper however, you may sell or transfer specimens to non-commercial users for up to one year following the inclusion of the concerned species on the Union list, provided that the concerned specimens were acquired prior to such listing and are kept in a contained holding. Prior to the sale/transfer of any invasive alien species of Union concern it is recommended to duly inform customers on the restrictions in place and the requirement to keep such specimens in contained holding.
Keeping a specimen in a “contained holding” means keeping the animal in confinement such that escape/spread is not possible. Considering the ease of dispersal of seeds (e.g. through wind, birds etc.), the keeping of invasive flora of Union concern in gardens is prohibited, and such plants or trees should be kept in fully enclosed spaces such as aquaria, greenhouses or indoors.
Moreover, for up to two years from the date of inclusion of a species on the Union list, commercial owners/keepers of such specimens may:
- sell or transfer such specimens to permitted research or ex-situ conservation establishments or for the purpose of medicinal activities, or;
- humanly cull or eradicate those specimens to exhaust their stock, in line with best practices and guidelines such as the “Guidelines on managing non-native plant invaders and restoring native plant communities in terrestrial settings in the Maltese Islands“, provided that the concerned IAS were acquired prior to the inclusion of the species on the Union list.
- European Commission brochure (2020) – Invasive alien species of Union Concern
- European Commission brochure (2016/2017) – Invasive alien species of Union concern
- ERA automatic update form – Restriction of prohibited species
- ERA IAS leaflet – Stop the spread (2020)
- ERA IAS letter – New restrictions on a number of animals & plants (2020)
- Regulation (EU) No 1143/2014 – Prevention & Management of the Introduction & Spread of Invasive Alien Species
- S.L. 549.119 – Control of Invasive Alien Species of European Union Concern Regulations
- S.L. 549.44 – Flora, Fauna & Natural Habitats Protection Regulations