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Invasive Smooth Cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) Eradication and Native Crab Recovery

  • Long Tang (a1), Bo Li (a2), Bin Zhao (a2), Peng Li (a3), Zhanbin Li (a3) and Yang Gao (a4)...


Invasive smooth cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora Loisel) eradication is important for the health of many coastal ecosystems. An integrated regime of continuous submergence after clear mowing, with three interval levels between mowing and submergence (5, 10, and 15 d) and three submergence depths (20, 30, and 50 cm), was implemented in cofferdams enclosing invader populations along a Chinese coast. In July of the following year, after the roots of mowed S. alterniflora had been submerged for 12 mo, some ramets grew under the regime with an interval of 15 d and the regime with a submergence depth of 20 cm, but no ramets occurred under the regimes with submergence depths of 30 or 50 cm and intervals of 5 or 10 d. Four crab species were documented: Helice tridens tientsinensis Rathbun, Sesarma dehaani H. Milne-Edwards, Ocypode stimpsoni Ortmann, and Chiromantes haematocheir de Haan. Biomass and abundance values of crab species in the cofferdams were similar to those in the mudflats but different from those in smooth cordgrass populations. Thus, the treatment of submergence after mowing, which was implemented in the cofferdams, can control S. alterniflora and provide a mudflat-like habitat that promotes crab recovery if this treatment uses the proper combination of submergence depth and interval between mowing and submergence.


Corresponding author

* Author for correspondence: Yang Gao, State Key Laboratory Base of Eco-Hydraulic Engineering in Arid Area, Institute of Water Resources and Hydro-electric Engineering, Xi’an University of Technology, No.5 South Jinhua Road, Xi’an, China. (Email:


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Invasive Smooth Cordgrass (Spartina alterniflora) Eradication and Native Crab Recovery

  • Long Tang (a1), Bo Li (a2), Bin Zhao (a2), Peng Li (a3), Zhanbin Li (a3) and Yang Gao (a4)...


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