Biological Invasions

, Volume 9, Issue 4, pp 383–395

A simulation model of plant invasion: long-distance dispersal determines the pattern of spread

  • Nana Nehrbass
  • Eckart Winkler
  • Jana Müllerová
  • Jan Pergl
  • Petr Pyšek
  • Irena Perglová
Research Paper

DOI: 10.1007/s10530-006-9040-6

Cite this article as:
Nehrbass, N., Winkler, E., Müllerová, J. et al. Biol Invasions (2007) 9: 383. doi:10.1007/s10530-006-9040-6

Abstract

Mechanisms and consequences of biological invasions are a global issue. Yet, one of the key aspects, the initial phase of invasion, is rarely observed in detail. Data from aerial photographs covering the spread of Heracleum mantegazzianum (Apiaceae, native to Caucasus) on a local scale of hectares in the Czech Republic from the beginning of invasion were used as an input for an individual-based model (IBM), based on small-scale and short-time data. To capture the population development inferred from the photographs, long-distance seed dispersal, changes in landscape structures and suitability of landscape elements to invasion by H. mantegazzianum were implemented in the model. The model was used to address (1) the role of long-distance dispersal in regional invasion dynamics, and (2) the effect of land-use changes on the progress of the invasion. Simulations showed that already small fractions of seed subjected to long-distance dispersal, as determined by systematic comparison of field data and modelling results, had an over-proportional effect on the spread of this species. The effect of land-use changes on the simulated course of invasion depends on the actual level of habitat saturation; it is larger for populations covering a high proportion of available habitat area than for those in the initial phase of invasion. Our results indicate how empirical field data and model outputs can be linked more closely with each other to improve the understanding of invasion dynamics. The multi-level, but nevertheless simple structure of our model suggests that it can be used for studying the spread of similar species invading in comparable landscapes.

Keywords

Individual-based modelling Invasion history Local spread Long-distance dispersal Land-use change 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nana Nehrbass
    • 1
  • Eckart Winkler
    • 1
  • Jana Müllerová
    • 2
  • Jan Pergl
    • 2
  • Petr Pyšek
    • 2
  • Irena Perglová
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Ecological ModellingCentre for Environmental Research UFZ LeipzigLeipzigGermany
  2. 2.Institute of BotanyAcademy of Science of the Czech RepublicPrůhoniceCzech

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