Submitted to: Society for Range Management Meeting Abstracts
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/1/2005
Publication Date: 2/1/2005
Citation: Mangold, J.M., Sheley, R.L., Svejcar, A.J. 2005. Toward ecologically-based management of invasive plants on western rangeland [abstract]. Society for Range Management. Paper No. 211.
Technical Abstract: Land managers typically use herbicides, biological controls, grazing and/or revegetation to manage rangeland dominated by invasive plants. While these tools may control the weeds, without thoughtful implementation they rarely influence the altered ecological processes that allow weed invasion and persistence. Ecological processes must be addressed to develop sustainable invasive plant management with predictable outcomes. Successional management provides a process-based framework for land managers dealing with invasion. This framework provides land managers practical methods for modifying ecological processes in order to direct plant community composition away from invasive species and toward desired plant assemblages. To date, successional management has not gained widespread acceptance because it has not been conceptually linked to contemporary successional models. Ecologists and land managers desire more contemporary successional models that usually emphasize a particular aspect of plant community dynamics, for example competition. Therefore, we attempt to enhance the framework by incorporating foundations of some additional mechanistic, process-based successional models. Incorporating other prevailing successional models further elucidates ecological processes, offers additional management strategies, and widens the possibilities for ecologically-based management of rangeland weeds. Approaching management and restoration of weed-infested rangeland through this process-based, mechanistic framework will enable managers to design and incorporate strategies that maximize the likelihood of successful invasive plant management because these methods will be integrated based on established ecological principles.