Lozano, Vanessa (2018) Invasive alien aquatic plants in South American inland waters: Inventory, prioritisation and distribution models. Doctoral Thesis.
Biological invasions are a widespread process at the global level and can alter population dynamics, community structure and ecosystem services in the invaded range. Aquatic plants are very often particularly invasive, especially in areas that are modified by humans. Taking into consideration the little information available, it was considered essential proposed an inventory of South American native and non-native aquatic plant species, aiming to collect information on their status of invasion, identifying the major current and the potential future plant invaders. To this aim, all the available information was collected from literature, the GBIF database and according to expert opinion. To evaluate the invasiveness of a group of aquatic plant species in South America, a standard risk assessment scheme (USAqWRA) was applied. Finally, the inventory data was used to apply a model to assess the current potential distribution of South American invasive aquatic plants. As it can be expected, considering the large number of species and diverse habitats of the investigated Continent, despite the progress herewith presented, many fundamental questions in biological invasions in South American inland waters remain unresolved. I think that the opportunity provided by establishing Global Networks for Invasion Science are a very powerful approach with plenty of benefits, increasing the capacity to identify and assess emerging invasion risks and global trends.
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