Effective control of an alien invasive tree species (Tabebuia pallida Miers) using chemical herbicides.
Forests in Mauritius are facing an alarming rate of encroachment by alien plant species which are changing the ecosystem function, equilibrium and composition of species and richness. Mauritius being a small tropical island is one of the recently colonized areas of the world where only a few descriptions of species composition and diversity exist. Invasive plant species are controlled by mechanical, chemical and biological methods. Efficient herbicide and suitable application methods were assessed for the control of Tabebuia pallida (Tecoma) in a forest area managed by the National Parks and Conservation Services (Mauritius). Effectiveness of herbicides to ringed barks showed Round-up (100%) to be most effective compared to Triclon (73%) and Tordon 101 (40%). Drastic changes were observed with Roundup, irrespective of the application methods used. Significant differences were found among cut stump, ring barking and drilling application methods. Cut stump method was much more effective compared to the other two treatments. Ring barking also proved to be successful to some extent. Application of herbicides through drilling was ineffective. The use of herbicides was a significant factor in the death rate of the invasive species.