Park, Daniel , Potter, Daniel .
Weed Profiling: A Molecular Phylogenetic Approach to Darwin's Naturalization Hypothesis.
Invasive species have great ecological and economic impacts, making the ability to understand and predict the invasiveness of species of great import. Rare and endangered species are particularly strongly impacted by invaders, and once exotic plant species are established in a new region, they are generally extremely difficult to control. Hence, preventing potential invasive species from reaching ground zero is the most economically and environmentally desirable management method. We explore the use of evolutionary distance as a quantifiable measure of predicting invasiveness, using the weedy cosmopolitan family Asteraceae in California as a model system. Molecular phylogenies of the thistle tribe, Cardueae, were generated with nuclear (ITS) and cpDNA (matK, trnL-trnF) markers, not only including taxa present in CA, but representing the entire diversity of the clade worldwide. Branch lengths separating naturalized invasive and non-invasive exotic taxa from native CA taxa were compared statistically using t-tests and Kolmogorov-Smirnov tests to ascertain whether invasives are more or less closely related to natives than non-invasives are. Patterns within this monophyletic group show that exotic species that have become naturalized in CA more closely related to native species than those that have not become naturalized, and that invasive exotics are more closely related to natives than are non- invasive exotics (p<0.05). These results suggest that pre-adaptive traits are more important than novel traits and/or enemy escape in determining an invader's success. Such molecular phylogenetic research can further our understanding of biological invasions and facilitate development of a predictive framework for screening potential invasive taxa.
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1 - University of California, Davis, Plant Sciences, 3800 Solano Park Cir APT#3923, Davis, CA , 95616, USA
2 - University Of California Davis, DEPARTMENT OF PLANT SCIENCES MAIL STOP 2, One Shields Avenue, Davis, CA, 95616-8780, USA
Presentation Type: Oral Paper:Papers for Sections
Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
Time: 10:45 AM