Biological Invasions (2004) 6, 319-329

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Chev H. Kellogg and Scott D. Bridgham (2004)
Disturbance, herbivory, and propagule dispersal control dominance of an invasive grass
Biological Invasions 6 (3), 319-329
Abstract: Despite the dramatic changes invasive plants cause to ecosystems and communities, factors that control dominance of invasive species after establishment in a community are poorly understood. Most active management relies on catastrophic disturbances of invasive-dominated communities to increase richness and diversity of plant communities. This study examines the importance of propagule dispersal and deer herbivory on continued dominance of Phalaris arundinacea after a non-catastrophic, short-term disturbance to monotypic stands of this invasive grass. The disturbance caused no change in P. arundinacea cover among treatments during any year of the study and, thus, simulates disturbance intensity more likely to be encountered in unmanaged settings. Despite the small disturbance, the combinations of disturbance + seeding and disturbance + seeding + deer exclusion caused greater species richness than controls even three years after disturbance. Increased invasion of P. arundinacea stands caused few effects on the dominant, as P. arundinacea biomass was unaffected after the first year. Selective herbivory by deer of species other than P. arundinacea increased the effects of disturbance and seeding, and aided in continued dominance of the grass. The tolerance of P. arundinacea for direct anthropogenic effects, including poor water quality and hydroperiod fluctuations, and indirect effects, such as increased herbivory by historically high deer populations, indicates the complexity of determining persistence of invasive species.
(The abstract is excluded from the Creative Commons licence and has been copied with permission by the publisher.)
Link to article at publishers website

Research topic(s) for pests/diseases/weeds:
population dynamics/ epidemiology
environment - cropping system/rotation

Pest and/or beneficial records:

Beneficial Pest/Disease/Weed Crop/Product Country Quarant.

Phalaris arundinacea (weed)