Competition (Biology), Florida applesnail, Introduced snails -- Florida, Pomacea canaliculata -- Florida, Pomacea canaliculata -- Florida -- Reproduction, Pomacea canaliculata -- Food -- Florida, Snail populations -- Florida
Invasive species are detrimental to native biotas worldwide. Recently, Florida was invaded by a freshwater snail (Pomacea canaliculata) native to Argentina. This snail is a serious pest of rice crops in Asia, but little is known about its interactions within Florida ecosystems. Possible competitive exclusion of the native congener (P. paludosa) is a concern because it is the almost exclusive prey of the federally endangered Everglades snail kite (Rostrhamus sociabilis). My research consisted of three parts. First, to identify possible methods to control P. canaliculata in the egg stage, I experimentally evaluated the effects of photoperiod, substrate availability, and food type and availability on hatching success and hatchling survival. None of these factors significantly affected hatching or survival, suggesting that P. canaliculata could invade many water bodies. Second, I used a randomized block design to assess the separate and combined effects of population density and food availability on growth and spawning of P. canaliculata. Food availability but not density significantly affected growth; snails fed less food grew less, but neither factor affected spawning. Third, I used a replacement series design to assess competition between P. canaliculata and P. paludosa under food limitation. For both species, snails fed less grew significantly less, and snails exposed to greater congener densities spawned less than when exposed to conspecifics only. While my results predict that P. paludosa should exclude P. canaliculata, previous literature and current invasions suggest that the exotic snail may co-exist with its North American congener.
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Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Sciences
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences, Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic
Trexler, Christina M., "Biology, Ecology And Control Of The Invasive Channeled Apple Snail, Pomacea Canaliculata" (2011). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 1805.