Biological Invasions

, Volume 9, Issue 1, pp 1–12 | Cite as

Invasion success of non-indigenous aquatic and semi-aquatic plants in their native and introduced ranges. A comparison between their invasiveness in North America and in France

  • Gabrielle ThiébautEmail author


Aquatic and semi-aquatic plants comprise few species worldwide, yet the introduction of non-indigenous plants represents one of the most severe examples of biological invasions.

My goal is to compare the distribution and the biology of aquatic and semi-aquatic plants in their introduced ranges and in their native ranges. The primary objective of this study is to test the hypothesis that invasive species have evolved traits likely to increase their success in the new range. I made two reciprocal comparisons, i.e. I compared European species in France and in North America, and North American species in France and in North America. Twenty-seven species were classified according to their invasiveness in their introduced area. I␣found six invasive macrophyte species in France native to North America and 17 invasive species in North America native to Europe. Four species are invasive in both areas. There is no general tendency for macrophytes to be more vigorous in their introduced ranges. Most non-indigenous aquatic and semi-aquatic species are potentially invasive or widespread and well-established in their introduced country, while few species seem to be restricted in their distribution.


biological traits... France invasive plants North America 


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Jean-Nicolas Beisel (LBFE, University of Metz) is gratefully acknowledged for helpful assistance in statistical analysis. I thank two anonymous referees for their constructive comments on a early draft of this manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Université de Metz, UFR Sci FA, Laboratoire Biodiversité & Fonctionnement des EcosystèmesMetzFrance

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