Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract Full Text

Economic importance, impacts and possible mitigation measures of aquatic water hyacinth (Eichhornia crassipes Martius).


Water hyacinth is one of invasive weed species which belongs to family Pontederiaceae which was characterized by a free-floating perennial aquatic weed and one of the major challenging problems in water bodies of the tropics and sub-tropics. Therefore, the aim of this article is to identify the distribution, impacts and beneficial effects as well as the possible management practices of water hyacinth. Water hyacinth was introduced in the water bodies of the Rift Valley in 68 years ago and currently, the weed is distributed Lake Tana, Lake Abaya, Lake Koka, Koka Dam in Ethiopia. The weed affected water resources, fisheries, transportation and social structure. The wide distribution and abundance of water hyacinth has led to decreased water availability and sustainable water biodiversity in Ethiopian lakes. Water hyacinth in water bodies and nearby areas of local stakeholder has negative impact on environment and also impact on aquatics biodiversity. In contrast to these, Water hyacinth is rich sources of different nutrients that provide feed for animals. Water hyacinth can be controlled by mechanically by machine or manual which was environmentally safe as compared to other methods. Physical control includes automatic mowers and dredgers. Biological method by using bio agents' weevils which involves long term strategy and chemical involves by using herbicides 2,4-D, Diquat and Glyphosate that can be implemented by accomplished operator. Therefore, sustainable long term management strategies should include prevention in newly infested areas. To contain the further spread and buildup of this weed for future infestation, these weeds should be utilized for composting and feed purposes. Besides, extensive mass awareness and community campaign specially to uproot should be implemented. Therefore, it can be summarized that human intervention is considered current problem of water resource in the country and further study is needed to sustain the water resource to keep water hyacinth at economic thresh hold level.