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Tuesday, January 30 • 6:00pm - 9:00pm
Poster Display. Evolutionary Consequences of Fragmentation on Plant Communities in Northwest Ohio

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AUTHORS: Misty Peavler, Ashlee Nichter, Dr. Andrew Gregory - Bowling Green State University

ABSTRACT: A common feature across northwest Ohio is the occurrence of ditches and agricultural field margins.  Each of these field margins is a remnant of the native Great Black Swamp that dominated this region of the country prior to European settlement. Each of these linear habitat features, is a small patch, in which native plant species likely live in highly inbred populations. Moreover, ditches are highly invaded, so resource competition between natives and invasive is severe.  To assess the influence of competition and isolation on native plant life history trait evolution we selected a subset of 20 ditches or field margins, and collected seeds and plant data from 2 invasive and 2 native plant species at each site. Seed weight, seed number, basal width and basal height were recorded from each plant to determine the evolutionary life history traits of plants at these sites. Seeds were then stratified and a subset of 10 seeds were placed into growth chambers to test seed viability. We used a linear regression of seed characteristics and %natural or %nonnative plants at each site in SPSS to determine the impact of invadedness on native and nonnative plant life history trait evolution. We found that species had a negative correlation to the percent nonnative vegetation. The basal width of the plant is negatively correlated with the percent of nonnative vegetation at a site (P= 0.05). Seed weight is also negatively correlated with the percent of nonnative vegetation at a site (P= 0.05).  Our data could suggest that plants in linear habitat features throughout Wood and Lucas counties are tending to shift their evolutionary life history to become R-selected. 

Tuesday January 30, 2018 6:00pm - 9:00pm CST
Ballroom C & Foyer

Attendees (3)