The 'Carolina' Session Growth, Reproduction, and Biomass of Hydrilla in North Carolina,
NORTH CAROLINA STATE UNIV RALEIGH DEPT OF BIOLOGY
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Certain morphological and physiological characteristics are associated with the phenomenal ability of hydrilla to invade an aquatic system, overtop more desirable native rooted aquatic species, and form very dense monospecific mats. One of these adaptations is the formation of tubers which are vegetative propagules formed at the ends of positively geotropic rhizomes Van, Haller, and Garrard 1978. Tubers develop in the hydrosoil and thus are very resistant to all control methods. Also, hydrillas ability to become established and photosynthesize under low light intensities is unequaled by any other submersed rooted aquatic macrophyte Van, Haller, and Bowes 1976. Hydrilla growing in lakes in Umstead State Park in North Carolina was first identified by William Haller in 1981 and had apparently been established in the area for several years. Since its initial identification, hydrilla has been found in 18 other water bodies, all in Wake Country. Hydrilla has the potential to become a very serious problem as there are presently no effective means of halting its spreading or eradicating it after infestation occurs. For effective management in North Carolina, knowledge of the growth, reproduction, and biomass of hydrilla in North Carolina is needed. This research addresses these questions.