Navigation Links
Climate may keep beautiful killer plant in check
Date:2/26/2010

The flowering plant - purple loosestrife - has been heading north since it was first introduced from Europe to the eastern seaboard 150 years ago. This exotic invader chokes out native species and has dramatically altered wetland habitats in North America. But it turns out it may have a vulnerability after all: the northern climate. Canadian scientists have found that adapting to the Great White North carries a severe reproductive penalty that may limit its spread.

Purple loosestrife (Lythrum salicaria) destroys wildlife habitats by displacing native vegetation that provides food, shelter, and breeding areas for wildlife. In urban areas, it invades ditches where it can block or disrupt water flow. It has few pests and diseases, resists various control methods, and plants can produce as many as 3 million seeds a year.

But as this invasive plant has spread north it has run into challenges posed by a shorter growing season, according to a study conducted by Robert Colautti, who recently obtained his Ph.D. from the University of Toronto's Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Ecology. The results are published online this week in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London, series B (https://rspb.royalsocietypublishing.org/content/firstcit) and featured in Nature (http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v463/n7284/full/4631002e.html).

The authors used modeling and experimental studies of 20 purple loosestrife populations along a 1200 km latitudinal gradient from Maryland to Timmins, Ontario, representing a one-month difference in growing season. They found that northern populations have become locally adapted and flower earlier in response to a shorter growing season. However, early flowering plants suffer a cost in terms of smaller size and reduced seed production. The reason: a genetic constraint.

"Genes that cause early flowering also reduce plant size, so early flowering and small size evolve together," says Colautti. "Smaller size results in lower seed production, which is likely to limit the spread of purple loosestrife in northern regions."


'/>"/>

Contact: Kim Luke
kim.luke@utoronto.ca
416-978-4352
University of Toronto
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. NOAA, NASA and Old Dominion researchers measure impacts of changing climate on ocean biology
2. New insights into helping marine species cope with climate change
3. Understanding global climate change through new breakthroughs in polar research
4. New UC Davis study: Climate tipping points may arrive without warning, says top forecaster
5. Animals cope with climate change at the dinner table
6. New facility expected to clarify ecosystem responses to climate change
7. Oceans reveal further impacts of climate change, says UAB expert
8. According to new survey, Americans support strong climate, energy policies
9. Invasive plants are beneficiaries of climate change in Thoreaus woods
10. World Wetlands Day focuses on climate change
11. Effects of forest fire on carbon emissions, climate impacts often overestimated
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:4/13/2017)... 13, 2017 UBM,s Advanced Design and Manufacturing ... feature emerging and evolving technology through its 3D Printing ... run alongside the expo portion of the event and ... demonstrations focused on trending topics within 3D printing and ... manufacturing event will take place June 13-15, 2017 at the ...
(Date:4/11/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the ... ... to grow at a CAGR of 30.37% during the period 2017-2021. ... been prepared based on an in-depth market analysis with inputs from ... prospects over the coming years. The report also includes a discussion ...
(Date:4/6/2017)... , April 6, 2017 Forecasts ... ANPR, Document Readers, by End-Use (Transportation & Logistics, Government ... Oil, Gas & Fossil Generation Facility, Nuclear Power), Industrial, ... Other) Are you looking for a definitive ... ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... Oncolinx, ... the 43North Startup Competition, has truly taken their cancer research out of this ... cancer experiments from Cape Canaveral to the International Space Station’s (ISS) U.S. National ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... ... Summit ( http://www.paintherapeuticsummit.com ) is coming to San Diego, CA on September 27-28, ... to learn about the latest advances in the treatment of various types of ...
(Date:4/27/2017)... ... April 27, 2017 , ... ... , joined other scientists, researchers, engineers, and industry professionals in visiting U.S. Congressional ... ability to compete in the world photonics industry. , This year, National ...
(Date:4/26/2017)... ... April 26, 2017 , ... Looking for gift ... cooking events company, offers one-of-a-kind gifts, ranging from gourmet cooking experiences to Farmer’s ... and guests leave inspired with new cooking tips and techniques, thanks to Chef ...
Breaking Biology Technology: