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The Current and Potential Distribution of Parthenium Weed and Its Biological Control Agent in Pakistan

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Shabbir, A., Zalucki, M. P., Dhileepan, K., Khan, N. and Adkins, S. W. (2023) The Current and Potential Distribution of Parthenium Weed and Its Biological Control Agent in Pakistan. Plants, 12 (6). p. 1381. ISSN 2223-7747


Article Link: https://doi.org/10.3390/plants12061381

Publisher URL: https://www.mdpi.com/2223-7747/12/6/1381


Parthenium hysterophorus L. (Asteraceae), commonly known as parthenium weed, is a highly invasive weed spreading rapidly from northern to southern parts of Pakistan. The persistence of parthenium weed in the hot and dry southern districts suggests that the weed can survive under more extreme conditions than previously thought. The development of a CLIMEX distribution model, which considered this increased tolerance to drier and warmer conditions, predicted that the weed could still spread to many other parts of Pakistan as well as to other regions of south Asia. This CLIMEX model satisfied the present distribution of parthenium weed within Pakistan. When an irrigation scenario was added to the CLIMEX program, more parts of the southern districts of Pakistan (Indus River basin) became suitable for parthenium weed growth, as well as the growth of its biological control agent, Zygogramma bicolorata Pallister. This expansion from the initially predicted range was due to irrigation producing extra moisture to support its establishment. In addition to the weed moving south in Pakistan due to irrigation, it will also move north due to temperature increases. The CLIMEX model indicated that there are many more areas within South Asia that are suitable for parthenium weed growth, both under the present and a future climate scenario. Most of the south-western and north-eastern parts of Afghanistan are suitable under the current climate, but more areas are likely to become suitable under climate change scenarios. Under climate change, the suitability of southern parts of Pakistan is likely to decrease.

Item Type:Article
Corporate Creators:Department of Agriculture and Fisheries, Queensland
Business groups:Biosecurity Queensland
Keywords:climatic suitability; CLIMEX; Parthenium hysterophorus; leaf-feeding beetle; biological control
Subjects:Science > Invasive Species > Plants > Biological control
Plant pests and diseases > Weeds, parasitic plants etc
Live Archive:22 Jun 2023 04:40
Last Modified:22 Jun 2023 04:40

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