Misidentification impedes invasion management: report of Matricaria discoidea DC., an invasive alien species in Kashmir Himalaya

Research Articles | Published:

Print ISSN : 0970-4078.
Online ISSN : 2229-4473.
Pub Email: contact@vegetosindia.org
Doi: 10.1007/s42535-021-00328-5
First Page: 551
Last Page: 557
Views: 482

Keywords: Biodiversity, Flora, Invasive plants, Taxonomy, India, Himalaya


Invasive alien species are regarded as one of major drivers of global biodiversity loss, and correct taxonomic identification of these species at early stage of introduction is crucial in successful invasion management. Here we report Matricaria discoidea DC., an alien plant species, which has currently reached to the invasive stage in Kashmir Himalaya, India. The herbarium records revealed that although this alien species was first collected in the region about 4 decades before, it remained taxonomically misidentified, which impeded its timely management. To clarify the taxonomic identification and nomenclatural confusion of M. discoidea and validate its first distribution record in India, we provide a detailed taxonomic account, including description, delimiting characters with closely related species, photographic illustrations of diagnostic characters and distribution map. Our report will facilitate easier field identification of M. discoidea, thus inform policy and practice in invasion management and prevent its spread to the neighboring regions of Himalayan biodiversity hotspot.

Biodiversity, Flora, Invasive plants, Taxonomy, India, Himalaya

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We are highly thankful to Dr. Kanchi N. Gandhi, Senior Nomenclatural Registrar, Harvard University for his kind help in clarifying the nomenclature. Colleagues at BIOTA Laboratory, Centre for Biodiversity & Taxonomy, Department of Botany, University of Kashmir are acknowledged for their kind support during the present study.

Author Information

Islam Tajamul
Centre for Biodiversity and Taxonomy, Department of Botany, University of Kashmir, Srinagar, India