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Ecological Section

Mohamed, Kamal [1], Peterson, A. Townsend [1].

Distributional Possibilities of Five Species of Striga in North America.

Concern is growing about the devastating effects that invasive noxious and parasitic plants may have on susceptible crops and the ecosystem in the United States. With this idea in mind, we used ecological niche modeling techniques (ENM) to predict the potential geographic distribution of 5 species of Striga in North America (S. asiatica, S. lutea, S. hirsuta, S. hermonthica, and S. gesnerioides). Among these species, the first three rank among the most destructive of all weed species worldwide. The ENM method employs known distributional data for the species in Africa in tandem with environmental GIS data layers to predict niche dimensions for each species in North America. In some cases, model predictions were complicated by presence of Striga species in irrigated situations outside their natural ranges in Africa. In other cases, models were complicated by host-specific strains within a species (e.g., S. gesnerioides). Results suggest that whereas S. lutea and S. hermonthica may not constitute a great concern to agriculture in North America, S. asiatica, S. gesnerioides, and S. hirsuta may have great potential to threaten agricultural crops because of their wide predicted geographic ranges. This result is consistent with already-known cases of S. asiatica and S. generioides in isolated areas in the southern United States. This risk evaluation-based on a quantitative and tested methodology -provides a framework within which management decisions may be developed.

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1 - SUNY at Oswego, Biology, Oswego, New York, 13126

S. asiatica
S. hermonthica
S. lutea.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: 52-4
Location: Salon F - Austin Grand Ballroom/Hilton
Date: Wednesday, August 17th, 2005
Time: 2:15 PM
Abstract ID:152

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