Genome size does not predict invasiveness in Cactaceae
Cacti being sold in a South African nursery. (Photo provided by Ana Novoa)

Genome size does not predict invasiveness in Cactaceae

A recent study provides a large number of genome size estimates for species within the cactus family (Cactaceae), offering great opportunities for studying the evolution of genome size in this family. The study, which was published in Biological Invasions, has been carried out at the University of Coimbra (Portugal), with the collaboration of C·I·B Director David Richardson and former C·I·B post-doc Ana Novoa.

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Can we save South Africa from a Tamarix invasion?
Danica Marlin looking for Tamarisk beetles in a Tamarix infestation in Colorado, USA, May 2017. (Photo credit: Danica Marlin)

Can we save South Africa from a Tamarix invasion?

The South African biocontrol programme for invasive Tamarix  has begun,  with host-specificity testing of Tamarisk beetles. This news comes from a recent review article by Dr Danica Marlin, C·I·B Core Team Member Prof Marcus Byrne and colleagues, all from the University of the Witwatersrand.

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C·I·B researchers assess the threat of alien plant species to the Serengeti

A recent study by C·I·B research fellow Dr Arne Witt and core team member Prof Brian van Wilgen, has found that over 50 alien plant species have established naturalised populations in the iconic Serengeti-Mara ecosystem in Kenya and Tanzania.

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Umuthi markets. Not safe from invaders…
Ewa Wojtasik visiting muthi traders at informal markets in Johannesburg and Durban (Photo credit: Ewa Wojtasik)

Umuthi markets. Not safe from invaders…

C·I·B core team member Marcus Byrne, along with University of Witwatersrand’s traditional medicine expert Vivienne Williams and student Ewa Wojtasik explored the viability of alien plants utilised in the South African umuthi trade and results of the study was published in the South African Journal of Botany.

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Science and management meet to evaluate and attempt eradication of the invasive <em>Melaleuca parvistaminea</em>
A single plant growing out of a termite mound in the Kluitjieskraal pine plantation near Wolseley. (Photo credits: John Wilson)

Science and management meet to evaluate and attempt eradication of the invasive Melaleuca parvistaminea

Research on rough-barked Honey Myrtle (Melaleuca parvistaminea) in South Africa began in 2009 when the newly formed SANBI’s Invasive Species Programme attempt to identify potentially invasive alien plant species as targets for eradication.

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