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Abstract Detail

Ecological Section

Callen, Steven [1], Knouft, Jason [1], Miller, Allison [2].

Assessing the environmental niches of native and introduced Pueraria montana (kudzu).

Similarities in niche characteristics of native and introduced ranges have been implicated as important factors contributing to invasion success. Comparative analysis of the environmental niches of introduced populations and the native populations from which they originated facilitates the identification of environmental factors associated with successful invasion. Kudzu, Pueraria montana var. lobata, native to Asia, was introduced into the United States in1876 and has since established populations in nearly 30 states, often dominating the landscape and displacing native taxa. In order to identify potential differences in the native and introduced environmental niches that may be contributing to the success of kudzu in the United States, GIS-based techniques in ArcGIS v9.3 and Maxent were used to describe the environmental niches of native (Asia) and introduced (United States) kudzu populations. While annual precipitation was the most important variable characterizing both ranges, temperature seasonality was important for predicting the extent of the native range, while precipitation of the driest month and annual mean temperature were of primary importance for predicting the introduced range. Environmental niche models created with environmental variables from the introduced range and projected onto the native range predicted 99% of the localities, where as models generated using environmental variables from the native range and projected onto the introduced range predicted only 74% of the localities. While biotic factors such as release from specialist enemies and community structure likely play a role in the kudzu invasion, these preliminary results suggest apparent differences in abiotic factors characterizing the native and introduced ranges of kudzu.

Broader Impacts:

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1 - Saint Louis University, Biology, 3507 Laclede Avenue, St. Louis, MO, 63103, USA
2 - Saint Louis University, Department Of Biology, 3507 Laclede Avenue, St. Louis, MO, 63103, USA

invasive species
environmental niche modeling.

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Khorassan Ballroom/Chase Park Plaza
Date: Monday, July 11th, 2011
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PEC018
Abstract ID:558

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