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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: GLOBAL CHANGE: RESPONSES AND MANAGEMENT STRATEGIES FOR SEMI-ARID RANGELANDS

Location: Rangeland Resources Research

Title: Predicting plant invasion in an era of global change

Authors
item Bradley, Bethany -
item BLUMENTHAL, DANA
item Wilcove, David -
item ZISKA, LEWIS

Submitted to: Trends in Ecology and Evolution
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: December 16, 2009
Publication Date: December 3, 2009
Repository URL: http://hdl.handle.net/102113/44416
Citation: Bradley, B.A., Blumenthal, D.M., Wilcove, D.S., Ziska, L.H. 2009. Predicting plant invasion in an era of global change. Trends in Ecology and Evolution. 25:310-318.

Interpretive Summary: Previous studies have indicated that ongoing global change will promote the spread of invasive plants. Recent research points to a more complex response. The components of global change that increase plant resources (for example, rising carbon dioxide, nitrogen deposition) most consistently favor invasive species, but, changes in temperature and precipitation may help or hinder plant invasion. Moreover, both experimental studies and models suggest that invasive plants respond in often unpredictable ways to the combined effects of different components of global change; this variability limits the utility of existing risk assessments and other predictive tools for management purposes. Land managers should be prepared for both expansion and retreat of invasive plants; the latter case may create unprecedented opportunities for ecosystem restoration.

Technical Abstract: Previous studies have indicated that ongoing global change will promote the spread of invasive plants. Recent research points to a more complex response. The components of global change that increase plant resources (e.g., rising CO2, N deposition) most consistently favor invasive species, but, changes in temperature and precipitation may help or hinder plant invasion. Moreover, both experimental studies and models suggest that invasive plants respond in often unpredictable ways to the combined effects of different components of global change; this variability limits the utility of existing risk assessments and other predictive tools for management purposes. Land managers should be prepared for both expansion and retreat of invasive plants; the latter case may create unprecedented opportunities for ecosystem restoration.

Last Modified: 8/19/2014
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