Pacific Island Ecosystems at Risk (PIER)

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Vulpia myuros
(L.) C.C.Gmel., Poaceae
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Present on Pacific Islands?  yes

Primarily a threat at high elevations?  no

Risk assessment results:  Reject, score: 20 (Go to the risk assessment).

Other Latin names:  Festuca myuros L.

Common name(s): [more details]

Chinese: shu mao

English: annual fescue, foxtail fescue, rat tail fescue, silvergrass, six weeks grass

French: vulpie queue-de-rat

Habit:  grass

Description:  "Annuals; culms solitary or several and loosely tufted, erect or ascending from a decumbent base, 1.5-5 (-7) dm tall, lower nodes geniculate, glabrous.  Sheaths glabrous; ligule erose-ciliate, 0.2-0.6 mm long, usually longer on the sides; blades filiform or linear, involute, upper surface scabrous, lower surface glabrous.  Panicles usually secund, narrow, (4-) 5-18 (-20) cm long, with ascending or appressed branches, the lower branches often widely spaced and enclosed in the upper sheath; spikelets 3-5-(-8)-flowered; glumes thin, strongly unequal, glabrous, first glume sometimes scale-like, 0.3-1.5 mm long, 1-nerved, second glume lanceolate, 2.5-5.5 mm long, 1-3-nerved; lemmas linear-lanceolate, 4.7-7.5 mm long, scabrous to puberulent, ± long-ciliate toward apex, produced into awns 8-15 (-17) mm long.  Caryopsis dark brown, linear, strongly dorsiventrally compressed, ventrally convex, 3.5-4 mm long, coherent to the lemma and palea"  (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1603).

Description from GrassBase.

Habitat/ecology:  "Grass- and woodland, coastal estuaries and dunes, salt marshes.  A highly competitive grass that suppresses native perennial grasses and forbs and prevents their establishment.  Dense swards of this grass displace native vegetation and strongly reduce species richness. The grass is shallow-rooted and well adapted to soils of low fertility"  (Weber, 2003; p. 453).

In Hawai‘i, "naturalized and often common in pastures, grasslands, open sites in diverse mesic forest, and dry, disturbed areas, especially on steep, rocky slopes or exposed hillsides, 580-2,590 m"  (Wagner et al., 1999; pp. 1603-1604).

Propagation:  Seed. "The short-lived seeds are dispersed mainly by attaching to animals" (Weber, 2003; p. 453).

Native range:  "Europe, now widely naturalized"  (Wagner et al., 1999; p. 1603).

Presence:

Pacific
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Australia (Pacific offshore islands)
Norfolk Islands
Norfolk Island introduced
invasive
Orchard, Anthony E., ed. (1994) (p. 12)
Subsp. megalura (Nutt.) Stace & R.Cotton "An introduced weed". Voucher cited: J.H. Maiden & J.L. Boorman (K)
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
var. myuros, var. hirsuta
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más a Tierra (Robinson Crusoe Island) introduced
invasive
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (pp. 461, 465, 558)
var. myuros and var. hirsuta Hackel
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Más Afuera (Alejandro Selkirk Island) introduced
invasive
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
var. hirsuta
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Santa Clara introduced
invasive
Atkinson, Rachel/Sawyer, John (2011)
var. myuros
Chile (offshore islands)
Juan Fernández Islands
Isla Santa Clara introduced
invasive
Danton, Philippe/Perrier, Christophe/Martinez Reyes, Guido (2006) (pp. 461, 465, 558)
var. myuros. Voucher cited: Danton B(451)408
French Polynesia
Society Islands
Tahiti Island native
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
French Polynesia
Austral (Tubuai) Islands
Rapa Island native
Florence, J./Chevillotte, H./Ollier, C./Meyer, J.-Y. (2013)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Hawai‘i (Big) Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Kaua‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Lāna‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Maui Island introduced
invasive
Starr, Forest/Starr, Kim (2011) (p. 33)
East Maui. Voucher cited: Starr & Starr 090504-04 (BISH)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
Moloka‘i Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
State of Hawaii
Hawaiian Islands
O‘ahu Island introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
New Zealand (offshore islands)
Kermadec Islands
Kermadec Islands introduced
invasive
Edgar, E./Connor, H. (2000) (p. 209)
"Waste land, shingly river flats, and in rough pasture; sea level to montane".
United States (other Pacific offshore islands)
Midway Atoll
Midway Atoll introduced
invasive
Wagner, Warren L./Herbst, Derral R./Sohmer, S. H. (1999) (pp. 1603-1604)
Pacific Rim
Country/Terr./St. &
Island group
Location Cited status &
Cited as invasive &
Cited as cultivated &
Cited as aboriginal introduction?
Reference &
Comments
Australia
Australia (continental)
Australia (continental) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
Chile (continental)
Chile
Chile (Republic of)   Hafliger, Ernst/Scholz, Hildemar (1980) (p. 136)
China
China
China (People's Republic of)   Hafliger, Ernst/Scholz, Hildemar (1980) (p. 136)
Japan
Japan
Japan (country) introduced
Mito, Toshikazu/Uesugi, Tetsuro (2004) (p. 193)
var. myuros and var. megalura Rydb.
Mexico
Mexico
Mexico (United Mexican States) introduced
invasive
U.S. Dept. Agr., Agr. Res. Serv. (2013)
New Zealand
New Zealand
New Zealand (country) introduced
invasive
Edgar, E./Connor, H. (2000) (p. 209)
"Waste land, shingly river flats, and in rough pasture; sea level to montane".

Control: 

Physical:  "A combination of spring and autumn grazing can reduce the density of the grass".

Chemical:  "Spraying glyphosate during flowering prevents seed set.  Other effective herbicides are simizine applied in autumn, propyzamide or dalapon"  (Weber, 2003; p. 453).


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This page was created on 10 FEB 2007 and was last updated on 9 MAR 2010.