Forestry and Environment Sympoisum 1998, Sri Lanka

Fourth Annual Symposium organized by Department of Forestry and Environment Science, University of Sri Jayewardenapura, Sri Lanka.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

DISTRIBUTION OF INVASIVE PLANT Ulex europeus IN HORTON PLAINS NATIONAL PARK

M C Devendra1, H S Amarasekera1 AND S Wahala2
1Department of Forestry and Environment Science,
University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Nugegoda.
2'Young Biologists' Association

One of the most sensitive problems facing the conservation and management of Horton Plains National Park is the spreading of Ulex europeus (gorse), an invasive plant species. To effectively manage and control this species it is necessary to have a sound knowledge of its distribution within this park.

This study was carried out to find the extent and distribution of Ulex europeus in tile park and finally to prepare a map showing the extent and distribution. The percent coverage was assessed using 2m x 2m quadrates. In each quadrate percentage cover of reproductives and non - reproductives were measured.

According to the results of this study, about 6ha of the area is covered by Ulex europeus. Total amount of the area which covers more than 80% of Ulex europeus is 2.4ha. The area which consists of less than 80% of Ulex europeus is 3.31ha. The extent of reproductives and non reproductives are also presented in the paper. Findings on the distribution pattern of the species show that tile area around the main gate and Farr Inn guest house is the most densely and continuously distributed area with more than 80% coverage of Ulex europeus. Except this there are a few isolated patches on either side of the road and trail with more than 80% coverage of Ulex europeus. The distribution of the Ulex europeus plants are mainly restricted along the stream from Black bridge to Gempit pool. The density of the species gradually decreased from up stream to down stream but it was higher in the areas where water is stagnated along the stream. It is interesting to note that there are no plants of Ulex europeus found inside the natural forest except at the margins of the forest.


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