Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Investigation and analysis of airborne ragweed pollen in Qingdao and Beijing areas from 2010 to 2015.

Abstract

Objective: As an invasive species, ragweed not only destroys the local vegetation, but also easily causes allergic rhinitis and asthma. It is one of the most important allergens causing pollinosis in summer and autumn in China. We investigated the concentration and distribution of ragweed pollen and analyzed its changing profile in the air of Qingdao and Beijing. Methods: Two monitoring stations(west and east)were set up in Qingdao, and one in Beijing, and data were collected from 2010 to 2015. The pollen in the air was collected by the gravity sedimentation method and identified under microscopes. Pollen exposure analysis was performed daily, combined with open field investigation. Results: Only Ambrosia artemisiifolia pollen were found in Qingdao. The pollen count was 175 (west) and 257 (east) in 2010; 508 (west)and 589 (east) in 2011; and 792 (west) in 2015. The peak ragweed pollen concentration was in August and September, and reached its highest level in late August and early September. There was no breeding of ragweed in the wild near Beijing. Ragweed pollen count was 4 in 2010, 2 in 2011, and was not observed under a microscope from 2012-2015 in Beijing. Conclusion: During the five-year-experimental period, pollen monitoring stations in the eastern and western parts of Qingdao showed that the concentration of ragweed pollen in the air increased every year, suggesting that strategies should be devised to check the spread of ragweed pollen, and to prevent and control pollinosis.