The impacts of exotic Typha on benthic invertebrate communities in the South Arm of the Fraser River Estuary
Lee, Jan (author)
Ransome, Douglas (committee member)
Owen, Susan (committee member)
British Columbia Institute of Technology School of Construction and the Environment (Degree granting institution)
Simon Fraser University Faculty of Environment (Degree granting institution)
(Degree granting institution)
© Jan Lee, 2021. All rights reserved. No part of this work covered by the copyright heron may be reproduced or used in any form or by any means – graphics, electronic, or mechanical including photocopying, taping, or information storage and retrieval systems – without written permission of the author.
British Columbia Institute of Technology
In recent decades, the exotic cattail Typha angustifolia and its hybrid Typha x glauca have invaded the Fraser River estuary. The impacts from this invasion on benthic macroinvertebrate communities, however, are yet to be studied. Macroinvertebrates play important roles in food chains, trophic dynamics, and nutrient cycling and are potentially at risk from this invasion. In this study, I compared the benthic invertebrate communities between exotic cattail stands and native vegetation stands at 25 paired sites. Sediment cores were analyzed for invertebrate abundance, biomass, and Shannon Wiener diversity index, and it was found that biomass and abundance were lower in exotic cattail when compared to native vegetation, however, there was no difference in diversity. Given the proximity to side channels, tidal inundation time would be a logical explanation for the differences in the benthic communities; however, it was not found to be a significant predictor. Given the invasive nature of exotic cattail and the correlations that were found, cattail should be removed in restoration projects where possible.
Typha x glauca
Fraser River (B.C.)
Ecological Restoration Program
Master of Science