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Seedling establishment of the invasive clonal grass Elymus athericus: An experimental approach

Wels, T. (2001) Seedling establishment of the invasive clonal grass Elymus athericus: An experimental approach. Master's Thesis / Essay, Biology.

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Elymus athericus was formally known to be restricted to high salt marsh habitats. Recently the spread into low habitats has been reported. In the present study seedling establishment of E. athericus in the low saltmarsh was examined. Seedlings of seeds of different populations from different habitats were grown in the greenhouse and later transplanted into a not yet by E. athericus invaded low salt marsh habitat of young successional stage on the Dutch Wadden Sea island Schiermonnikoog. The Influence of Herbivory and Kompetition were examined. Establishment success was followed by measuring fitness parameters like survival rate, ramets per plant and rhizomes per plant as well by measuring growth parameters like plant height, leafs per plant and relative growthrate. Herbivory and competition with neighbours were discovered to be the most important inhibiting factors of seedling establishment. In general, seedlings of seeds of a low habitat in an old successional stage performed lowest in the study site. Furthermore, despite the prior assumption indegenous seedlings were discovered in the area. Their development was followed analog to transplanted ones. Seedlings growing in the neighbourhood of Limonium vulgare were found to perform better. This was valid for transplanted as well as for indegenous seedlings. Moreover, a drift experiment with coloured E. athericus spikelets showed that E. athericus populations at the bank of creek could provide diaspores for invading low salt marsh habitats by transport with medium high tidal floods.

Item Type: Thesis (Master's Thesis / Essay)
Degree programme: Biology
Thesis type: Master's Thesis / Essay
Language: English
Date Deposited: 15 Feb 2018 07:31
Last Modified: 15 Feb 2018 07:31

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