Impact of invasive plants in Mediterranean habitats: disentangling the effects of characteristics of invaders and recipient communities - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Biological Invasions Year : 2014

Impact of invasive plants in Mediterranean habitats: disentangling the effects of characteristics of invaders and recipient communities

Abstract

While the effects of an invasive alien plant that has become dominant in a community may seem obvious, there are few studies that attempt to understand how impacts vary according to the characteristics of invaders and recipient communities. For this purpose, the vegetation of invaded and non-invaded plots was sampled for eight different invasive species in a variety of habitats within the French continental Mediterranean region. Most of the observed impact variation was species-specific, with greater effects on community-level metrics found for Carpobrotus spp. and Reynoutria x bohemica and lower effects for Amorpha fruticosa, Ambrosia artemisiifolia and Phyla filiformis. Some trends were consistent with competition-driven processes, with higher impact found in the presence of rhizomatous and creeping perennial invasive species compared to annuals, or in habitats with sparse vegetation. The importance of community characteristics such as the cover of the invasive plant or the differences in cover between the invader and the native dominant species confirmed previous results obtained in Central Europe. Therefore, such variables, easy to measure and with a generic value, could be profitably integrated into risk assessment methods to improve the prediction of the most threatened habitats. Beyond the overall decline in species diversity, the presence of some invasive species was associated with significant changes in species composition, with a filtering toward more shade-tolerant and nitrophilous ruderal species. Managers should consider replacement of resident species by species with different ecological preferences together with simple community-level metrics, to decide whether management is justified.
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hal-02634150 , version 1 (27-05-2020)

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Guillaume Fried, Béryl B. Laitung, Chloé Pierre, Nicolas Chagué, F. D. Panetta. Impact of invasive plants in Mediterranean habitats: disentangling the effects of characteristics of invaders and recipient communities. Biological Invasions, 2014, 16 (8), pp.1639-1658. ⟨10.1007/s10530-013-0597-6⟩. ⟨hal-02634150⟩
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