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A new wave of marine fish invasions through the Panama and Suez canals

An Author Correction to this article was published on 26 July 2022

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Recent engineered expansions of the Panama and Suez canals have accelerated the introduction of non-native marine fishes and other organisms between their adjacent waters. Measures to prevent further invasions through canals should be incorporated into global shipping policies, as well as through local efforts.

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Fig. 1: Major, recent expansion works in the Suez and Panama canals, and the increase in non-native marine fish species in the Mediterranean Sea (Suez) and Lake Gatun (Panama).

Suez Canal images adapted from NASA Earth Observatory images by Jesse Allen, using Landsat data from the US Geological Survey (USGS) Global Visualization Viewer (GloVis); Panama Canal images contain modified Copernicus data (2018) processed by Sentinel Hub.

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We thank C. Linardich (IUCN Marine Biodiversity Unit) for providing fish lists from IUCN Red List assessments in the Eastern Pacific and Caribbean Sea. O Sanjur, L. Dutari and D. Muschett provided constructive feedback on manuscript drafts. Recreational and artisanal fishers provided valuable information on fish catches in Lake Gatun. G.A.C.-G. is sponsored by a Smithsonian fellowship.

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Correspondence to Gustavo A. Castellanos-Galindo.

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Castellanos-Galindo, G.A., Robertson, D.R., Sharpe, D.M.T. et al. A new wave of marine fish invasions through the Panama and Suez canals. Nat Ecol Evol 4, 1444–1446 (2020).

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