Articles | Volume 21, issue 9
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 21, 4551–4562, 2017
Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 21, 4551–4562, 2017

Research article 13 Sep 2017

Research article | 13 Sep 2017

Water-use dynamics of an alien-invaded riparian forest within the Mediterranean climate zone of the Western Cape, South Africa

Bruce C. Scott-Shaw et al.

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Cited articles

Askey-Dorin, M., Petit, N., Robins, L., and McDonald, D.: The role of vegetation in riparian management, in: Riparian Land Management Technical Guidelines. Vol. 1. Principles of Sound Management, edited by: Lovett, S. and Price, P., LWRRDC Canberra, Australia, 97–120, 1999.
Atsame-Edda, A.: Regeneration dynamics of natural forest species within a stand of the invasive alien Acacia mearnsii along the Buffeljagsrivier, Swellendam, South Africa, MSc Thesis, Stellenbosch University, South Africa, 2014.
Baruch, Z. and Fernandez, D. S.: Water relations of native and introduced C4 grasses in a neotropical savanna, Oecologia, 96, 179–185, 1993.
Burgess, S. O., Adams, M. A., Turner, N. C., Beverly, C. R, Ong, C. K., Khan, A. A. H., and Bleby, T. M.: An improved heat pulse method to measure low and reverse rates of sap flow in woody plants, Tree Physiol., 21, 589–598, 2001.
Cavaleri, M. A. and Sack, L.: Comparative water use of native and invasive plants at multiple scales: a global meta-analysis, Ecology, 91, 2705–2715, 2010.
Short summary
In South Africa, the invasion of riparian forests by alien trees has the potential to affect the limited water resources. To justify alien clearing programs, hydrological benefits are required. Spatial upscaling of measured sapflows showed that an alien stand used 6 times more water per unit area than the indigenous stand. A gain in groundwater recharge and/or streamflow would be achieved if the alien species were removed from riparian forests and rehabilitated back to their natural state.