Newspaper Article

Alien plant invasions: helping British rivers to fight back



Pattison Z (2018) Alien plant invasions: helping British rivers to fight back. The Conversation. 17.10.2018.

First paragraph: From lochs and lakes to rivers, ponds and canals, there is a diverse range of freshwater habitats in the UK, which is good news not just for biodiversity but also the economy, where they are collectively valued at £39.5 billion. Rivers in particular are highly biologically diverse environments, home to a wide variety of plants, invertebrates and fish. But linked together within a river catchment, they are prone to invasion by alien species that can spread quickly between these interconnected habitats. Invasive alien plant species are of one of the biggest concerns to river environments. These contribute to the loss of native plants and invertebrates, as well as altering soil chemistry and impeding river flow. It costs the UK government around £1.7 billion to control invasive alien species and an estimated £6m alone to control the well-known troublesome Japanese knotweed (Fallopia japonica).

Japanese knotweed;


Type of mediaThe Conversation
Publication date17/10/2018
Place of publicationLondon

People (1)


Dr Zarah Pattison

Dr Zarah Pattison

Senior Lecturer in Plant Sciences, Biological and Environmental Sciences