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Interspecific correlation between exotic and native plants under artificial wetland forests on the Dianchi lakeside, southwest China
This research focuses on the interspecific correlations of exotic and native species in the aged-8 artificial wetland forests. Four large plots (each 1500 m2) were established to record species and abundance of all plants; 160 quadrats (1 m × 1 m) were set to record numbers, height and coverage of each plant species. There were 78 species including six trees, 11 shrubs and 61 herbs recorded in the large plots. The interspecific relationships of major species (frequency > 3%) from quadrats were analyzed using χ2 test and Spearman rank correlation coefficient index. Of 253 species-pairs, 49 and 45 were significant (P < 0.05) with positive and negative correlations respectively, showing intense interspecific competition. Ward’s method of hierarchical clustering was used to divide the major species from quadrats into three and five ecological species groups at Rescaled Distance Cluster Combine of 20 and 10 respectively. Dominant invasive species (Solidago canadensis, Ageratina adenophora and Bidens pilosa) formed mono-dominant patches; however, species of different sizes and ecological demands, whether exotic or native, could coexist. These findings imply that exotic species can coexist with native species and become a common species composition when they exist for sufficient time in artificial wetland forests
MF17177 Accepted 01 September 2017
© CSIRO 2017