Monitoring of alien aquatic plants in the inland waters of Sicily (Italy)

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Abstract

Updated and reliable data on the presence and distribution of alien aquaticplant species in Sicily are lacking, and there is a need to fill this gap for a proper andefficient management of freshwater ecosystems and biodiversity. This paper reviewsthe available knowledge about alien aquatic vascular plants in the inland waters ofSicily (Italy). The aim is to provide an updated checklist, as a first step in the study ofthe impact of those plants on the native species and ecosystems of this Mediterraneanisland. The paper focuses on the strictly aquatic species (hydrophytes), excluding emergentmacrophytes. Four species were listed, all of them free-floating and with Americanorigin. Most of them occur within protected areas, and their introduction in the islandappears to be anthropogenic. A set of functional traits of the alien species, such as relativegrowth rate, leaf mass per area, nitrogen and carbon content, were screened. Thesetraits are useful for assessing the species invasive potential compared to native ones.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-83
Number of pages7
JournalWebbia
Volume75
Publication statusPublished - 2020

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