Galapagos Invasive Species:
Noxious weeds

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Experimental eradications

Field teamCandidate species are selected based on results from the Weed Risk Assessment and feasibility models. After a species is selected, the Charles Darwin Foundation together with the Galapagos National Park map its complete distribution, determine what methods of control are effective and make sure that all sites in which it occurs are accessible.

As we search (and map using Global Positioning System) we also control any plants we find, because much of the cost of eradication relates to finding each plant. Only after the full extent of the infestation is determined, the methods of control confirmed and the costs accurately estimated through our work with the field team, can we write up sensible management plans.

Candidates for eradication in Galapagos are:

Scientific Name
  • Rubus glaucus
  • Rubus adenotrichus
  • Rubus megaloccocus
  • Rubus ulmifolius
  • Rubus niveus
  • Citharexylum gentryi
  • Aristolochia odoratissima
  • Aristolochia elegans
  • Cenchrus pilosus
  • Casuarina equisetifolia
  • Acacia nilotica
  • Leucaena leucocephala
  • Lantana montevidensis
Common Name
  • Blackberry
  • Blackberry
  • Blackberry
  • Blackberry
  • Blackberry
  • Fiddlewood
  • Dutchman’s pipe
  • Dutchman’s pipe
So far, we have apparently eradicated Rubus adenotrichus and R. megaloccocus, with no plants seen since 2002 and January 2003 respectively. R. ulmifolius appears to have been eradicated from one site and three others are still being treated. At least 37 ha are infested with Aristolochia odoratissima and some farmers are reluctant to allow us to control it. This one will be a test of persuasion and collaboration. The greatest challenge is Citharexylum gentryi, which infests about 400 ha, and new plants are still being found after three years of work. More than 10,000 individuals have been treated so far, and flowering adults have not been found since 2003.

Source: Charles Darwin Foundation.

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This website was created on 25 October 2004 by PT and JK