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Title: Microbiological control of Eurasian watermilfoil
Authors: University of Massachusetts at Amherst. Department of Environmental Sciences.
Aquatic Plant Control Research Program (U.S.)
Gunner, Haim B., 1924-
Keywords: Aquatic plant control
Aquatic plants
Aquatic weeds
Biological control
Eurasian watermilfoil
Myriophyllum spicatum
Issue Date: Jun-1983
Publisher: Environmental Laboratory (U.S.)
Engineer Research and Development Center (U.S.)
Description: Miscellaneous Paper
Abstract: Cellulolytic and pectinolytic microorganisms were isolated from the microbial populations naturally resident in the phyllosphere of Eurasian watermilfoil, Myriophyllum spicatum and of M. heterophyllum. The yield of their respective operative enzymes was maximized by growth in appropriate cellulose and pectin media; the organisms, when subsequently applied to the plants, accelerated the plants' necrosis and decline. That cellulose and pectin are particularly vulnerable target tissues in Myriophyllum spp. was confirmed by the significant increase in plant necrosis achieved over untreated controls by the simple addition of sterile cellulose and pectin media to respective test chambers. Presumably this reflected the selective stimulus provided by these substrates to the resident cellulolytic and pectinolytic microflora. A consortium of cyanobacteria associated with Myriophyllum was also found to accelerate necrosis, as did its sterile growth medium; again, presumably, as a reflection of the selective stimulus provided to the cyanobacteria in the phyllosphere. The species determination of phyllosphere residents was reflected in the significantly higher pathogenic potential of the isolates from M. spicatum to that species than to M. heterophyllum. The results suggest that microorganisms native to the Myriophyllum ecosystem, particularly those selected for their ability to attack specific plant tissues or, alternatively, amendments applied to the environment stimulating the growth of such populations, offer promising avenues for the biological control of these aquatic nuisance plants.
Appears in Collections:Miscellaneous Paper

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