Biodiv Sci ›› 2023, Vol. 31 ›› Issue (5): 23011.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2023011

• Original Papers: Biosecurity and Nature Conservation • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Invasion status and control measures for alien plants within the Gaoligong Mountains

Yu Xiao1,2, Yuran Li1, Hexiang Duan2, Zhengtao Ren2, Shengbi Feng2, Zhicheng Jiang2, Jiahua Li3, Pin Zhang1, Jinming Hu1,*(), Yupeng Geng1,*()   

  1. 1. Centre for Invasion Biology; Ministration of Education Key Laboratory for Transboundary Ecosecurity of Southwest China, Yunnan University, Kunming 650500
    2. Yunnan Academy of Ecological and Environmental Sciences; Kunming International Research Center for Plateau Lakes, China, Kunming 650034
    3. Baoshan Management Bureau of Gaoligongshan National Nature Reserve, Baoshan, Yunnan 678000
  • Received:2023-01-16 Accepted:2023-05-03 Online:2023-05-20 Published:2023-05-12
  • Contact: * E-mail:;
  • About author:# Co-first authors


Aims: The Gaoligong Mountains are crucial biodiversity hotspots in China serving as Southwest China’s vital ecological security barrier. The impact of climate change and anthropogenic activity has led to a severe invasion of alien plants in the Gaoligong Mountains, posing significant threats to their ecological integrity and biosecurity. This study seeks to provide a comprehensive overview of the invasion status of alien plants and propose relevant control measures to safeguard the eco-security of the Gaoligong Mountains.
Methods: This study conducted systematic field investigations and combined information from previous literatures, to reveal the current invasion status of alien plants. The distribution range, recording frequency, distribution status, and impact were compiled to evaluate the invasion grade of each invasive plant in the Gaoligong Mountains.
Results: The study identified 225 alien plants from 50 individual families in the Gaoligong Mountains. Among these species, 214 species were categorized as alien invasive plants and 11 as alien cultivated plants. The Compositae family accounted for the highest proportion, which was 17.29%, followed by Fabaceae (14.02%), Euphorbiaceae (7.01%), and Amaranthaceae (6.54%). Most invasive and naturalized plants originated in the Americas, accounting for 67.76% (145 species), followed by Asia (17.76%). The numbers of species assessed as risk grade 1 and 2 were 15 and 27, respectively, and some species had a high invasion risk despite not currently causing apparent harm.
Conclusion: The taxonomic compositions, and origins of alien plants in the Gaoligong Mountains are complex, and their geographic origins characterize their invasion grade. Management of alien invasive plants should be species-specific according to their invasion grade to improve comprehensive control efficiency. These results could significantly contribute to better management practices for alien plants in the Gaoligong Mountains and provide valuable information for the Gaoligong Mountains National Park.

Key words: Gaoligong Mountains, alien invasive plants, invasion status, invasion grade, invasion management