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Reproductive phenology of the introduced kelp Undaria pinnatifida (Phaeophyceae, Laminariales) in Tasmania, Australia


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Schaffelke, B, Campbell, ML and Hewitt, CL 2005 , 'Reproductive phenology of the introduced kelp Undaria pinnatifida (Phaeophyceae, Laminariales) in Tasmania, Australia' , Phycologia, vol. 44, no. 1 , pp. 84-94 , doi: 10.2216/0031-8884(2005)44[84:RPOTIK]2.0.CO;2.

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For pest management of introduced marine species to succeed, a thorough understanding of reproductive patterns is essential. Undaria pinnatifida is an invasive macroalga that has been introduced into at least ten countries. Reproductive phenological studies in Tasmania, Australia were undertaken to provide much-needed quantitative information to support pest management. Zoospore release of U. pinnatifida, an annual kelp, was limited to the larger size-classes of sporophytes (> 55 cm length) for most of the growing season, with the proportion of mature sporophytes increasing towards the end of the season. Small sporophytes with mature sporophylls were not observed until late in the growing season, i.e., after November. The maximum zoospore release of U. pinnatifida was 62 x 103 zoospores cm-2 sporophyll tissue h-1, corresponding to a maximum release of 4.3 x 108 zoospores sporophyte-1 h-1. Spore release rates of other kelp species are similar or higher, the latter especially in larger sized species. Tagged U. pinnatifida individuals in the present study released zoospores for about three months before becoming senescent and disintegrating. Hypothetically, the smallest mature sporophyte would have a stipe width of 0.6 cm, corresponding to about 33 cm in total length, with a sporophyll circumference of 7.6 cm, and a sporophyll biomass of 0.2 g. The zoospore release of an assemblage of introduced U. pinnatifida at the study site was estimated as 2 x 109 zoospores m-2 h-1 in the month of January (summer). The two largest size classes released the majority of zoospores. Management efforts involving the manual removal of U. pinnatifida to control this
species could be rationalised by concentrating on the removal of only larger sporophytes (> 55 cm), potentially resulting in significant cost savings.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Schaffelke, B and Campbell, ML and Hewitt, CL
Keywords: Non-indigenous species; pest management; Undaria pinnatifida; zoospore release; size classes
Journal or Publication Title: Phycologia
ISSN: 0031-8884
DOI / ID Number: 10.2216/0031-8884(2005)44[84:RPOTIK]2.0.CO;2
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© 2009 International Phycological Society

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