A global assessment of invasiveness in Araceae
Desika Moodley - School of Environmental Sciences, University of KwaZulu Natal
Significant progress has been made in understanding biological invasions, with one of the key findings being that the determinants of naturalisation and invasion success vary from group to group.
We determine which species have been introduced outside their native ranges, the pathways of introduction, and which traits separate those species that have been introduced from those that are known to become invasive.
To do this we first developed a database of species that have been introduced worldwide using online databases e.g. (Global Invasive Species Database and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility) and literature sources e.g. (New Zealand Naturalised vascular plant check list and Aroideana).
Araceae provide an excellent study group for identifying determinants of invasiveness in herbaceous plants, since this is one of the largest plant families in the world, and among the most popular with horticulturalists, with species occupying various habitats.