Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Host and vector organisms (pathway vector)



Host and vector organisms (pathway vector)


  • Last modified
  • 12 June 2017
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Pathway Vector
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Host and vector organisms (pathway vector)
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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Host and vector organisms (pathway vector)

International Common Names

  • English: Vector species

Species Transported by Vector

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SpeciesNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Acacia longifolia (golden wattle)Reported to be dispersed by ants. Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Acarapis woodi (honeybee mite) Yes Yes Woodward and Quinn, 2011
Aculops fuchsiae (Fuchsia gall mite)Assumed possible on insects (e.g. bees) or birds Yes Koehler et al., 1985
Adelges tsugae (hemlock woolly adelgid) Yes
Adenanthera pavonina (red-bead tree)Seeds dispersed by birds Yes Yes Orwa et al., 2009
Aethina tumida Yes Yes OIE, 2012
Agropyron cristatum (crested wheatgrass)dispersal by rodents Yes Miller, 2010
Akebia quinata (five-leaf akebia) Yes
Alpinia purpurata (red ginger)Birds Yes Yes Wagner et al., 1999
Ambrosia artemisiifolia (common ragweed) Yes
Ambrosia trifida (giant ragweed) Yes
Amphibalanus improvisus (bay barnacle) Yes Yes Carlton et al., 2011; Tarasov and Zevina, 1957
Amylostereum areolatum Yes Yes Ciesla, 2003
Antigonon leptopus (coral vine)Fruits are eaten by birds and pigs Yes Yes USDA-NRCS, 2011
Aphanomyces astaciInfected crayfish (North American species or highly susceptible species) Yes Yes Oidtmann et al., 2005
Ardisia crenata (coral berry)Birds, e.g. Bombycilla cedrorum, Dumetella carolinensis, Ixos amaurotis, Mimus polyglottos Yes Kitajima et al., 2006; Langeland and Burks, 1998; Meisenburg, 2007
Ardisia humilis (low shoebutton)Fruits are dispersed mainly by birds and small mammals Yes Yes PROTA, 2015
Argemone ochroleuca (pale Mexican pricklypoppy) Yes BioNet-EAFRINET, 2011
Atriplex semibaccata (Australian saltbush) Yes
Aulacaspis yasumatsui (cycad aulacaspis scale) Yes Yes
Austrominius modestusOn molluscs and crustaceans e.g. the crab Portunus holsatus (not a major vector) Yes Leloup and Lefevere, 1952
Austropuccinia psidii (myrtle rust)Foraging honey bees Yes Carnegie et al., 2010b; Chapman, 1964
Avipoxvirus Yes Yes
Bactericera cockerelli (tomato/potato psyllid) Yes
Banana bunchy top virus (bunchy top of banana) Yes Yes
Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal)Infected animals escaping or introduced into natïve host communities Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990; Cunningham et al., 2015
Bidens frondosa (beggarticks)On fur of animals Yes Brändel, 2004
Bothriocephalus acheilognathiFish act as final hosts, copepod crustaceans as intermediate hosts; piscivorous birds can carry eggs Yes Yes Bauer and Hoffman, 1976; Choudhury and Cole, 2012; Prigli, 1975; Scholz et al., 2012
Campylopus introflexusBirds migrating carry spores, shoot tips can attach to the fur of animals Yes Yes Razgulyaeva et al., 2001
Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum (zebra chip) Yes Yes
Candidatus Phytoplasma asteris (yellow disease phytoplasmas) Yes Yes
Candidatus Phytoplasma australiense Yes Yes
Candidatus Phytoplasma phoeniciumAsymmetrasca decedens, Tachycixius viperina and T. cypricus. May be involved in long-distance transmission as well. Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Candidatus Phytoplasma rubi (witches'-broom phytoplasma disease) Yes Yes
Candidatus Phytoplasma solani (Stolbur phytoplasma) Yes Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Candidatus Phytoplasma trifolii (clover proliferation phytoplasma) Yes Yes
canine distemper virusFeral domestic dogs; wild animals Yes Yes
Celtodoryx ciocalyptoidesOn shells of Crassostrea gigas Yes Pérez et al., 2006; Henkel and Janussen, 2011
Ceratocystis platani (canker stain of plane) Yes
Chelonid herpesvirus 5Possibly the marine leech Ozobranchus spp. and the cleaner fish Thalassoma duperrey Yes Greenblatt et al., 2004
Cissus quadrangularis (treebine)Seeds and stem fragments may be dispersed by birds Yes Yes Nzengue et al., 2016
Claviceps africana (ergot)conidia Yes Yes Prom, 2005; Prom and Lopez, 2004
Claviceps fusiformis (pearl millet ergot)Insects feeding on honeydew Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990; Sharma et al., 1983
Claviceps gigantea (horse's tooth)Conidia on insects Yes White, 1999
Claviceps sorghicolaOther vector - Insects - macroconidia Yes Tsukiboshi et al., 1999
Cleome rutidosperma (fringed spiderflower)Seeds dispersed by ants Yes PIER, 2014
Clerodendrum wallichii (Wallich's glorybower)Birds eat fruit and disperse seeds Yes Yes
Clusia roseaFruiting stage, birds disperse seeds Yes Wagner et al., 1999
Cocksfoot mottle virus (Cocksfoot mottle virus)Frequency of introduction not known. Yes Yes
Corbicula fluminea (Asian clam)Likely spread by waterfowl Yes Schmidlin et al., 2012
Cotton leaf curl Gezira virus (African cotton leaf curl begomovirus)
Cowpea aphid-borne mosaic virusAphis craccivora is reported to be the most efficient vector Yes Atiri et al., 1984; Bock, 1973
Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows virus (Cucurbit aphid-borne yellows)Natural dispersion mostly by viruliferous winged aphids Yes Yes Kassem et al., 2013
Cydalima perspectalis (box tree moth)Buxus spp. Yes Leuthardt et al., 2010
Diplodia seriata (grapevine trunk disease) Yes
Dreissena polymorpha (zebra mussel) Yes Yes
East Asian Passiflora virus Yes Yes
Ehrharta erecta (panic veldtgrass)Birdseed, starlings and in deer hooves Yes Ogle, 1988
Eriobotrya japonica (loquat)Seeds eaten and dispersed by birds, bats, and other animals Yes Yes Orwa et al., 2009
Erwinia amylovora (fireblight)Transfer of plants, honeybees and the movement of beehives. Yes Yes Alexandrova et al., 2002
Etlingera elatior (torch ginger)Seeds can be dispersed by ants, birds, bats, and rodents Yes Yes PROTA, 2014
Euonymus fortunei (wintercreeper)Birds spread seeds Yes Miller et al., 2010
Ferrisia virgata (striped mealybug)Accidental introduction on plant material Yes Yes
Flacourtia indica (governor's plum)Birds eat seeds and disperse over short distances Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Gammarus tigrinusPotential to disperse on aquatic animals Yes Swanson, 1984
Gaultheria shallon (salal)Seeds transported to new areas after ingestion and egestion by birds Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Geosmithia morbida (thousand cankers disease)Pityophthorus juglandis, in some cases Stenomimus pallidus, and possibly other insects Yes
Grapevine red blotch virus (grapevine red blotch virus)GRBV is spread locally by the three-cornered alfalfa hopper Yes Bahder et al., 2016a
Halogeton glomeratus (halogeton)Seeds eaten by sheep and rabbits and remain viable Yes Tilley et al., 2015
Hedychium coccineum (scarlet ginger lily)Birds eat fruit and spread seed long distances Yes
Heterotheca grandiflora (telegraph weed)Possibly stuck to fur of domestic and wild animals Yes Csurhes, 2009
Holmskioldia sanguinea (Chinese hat plant)Seeds reportedly dispersed by birds Yes Yes PIER, 2014
Hop stunt viroid (hop stunt viroid) Yes Yes Hadidi et al., 2003
Hydrilla verticillata (hydrilla) Yes
Hylocereus undatus (dragon fruit)Seed dispersed by frugivorous birds Yes Yes
Hypericum perforatum (St John's wort)Sticky seed capsules stick to wool and fur of animals Yes Yes Parsons and Cuthbertson, 2001
Inula britannica (british yellowhead) Yes
Iris yellow spot virus (iris yellow spot)The disease is vectored by the onion thrips Yes Lewis, 1997
Isatis tinctoria (dyer's woad)Seeds carried by ants Yes Zouhar, 2009
Jatropha gossypiifolia (bellyache bush)Native ants Yes
Juncus planifolius (broadleaf rush)Birds Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Lantana camara (lantana)Birds, occasionally sheep and goats Yes
Lemna aequinoctialis (lesser duckweed)Birds and fish Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Lepidium latifolium (perennial pepperweed) Yes
Ligustrum lucidum (broad-leaf privet)Seeds dispersed by birds Yes Aragón and Groom, 2003
Limnocharis flava (yellow bur-head) Yes
Marisa cornuarietis (giant ramshorn)Eggs and snails associated with traded aquatic plants Yes
Melicoccus bijugatus (Spanish lime)Seeds can be dispersed by birds and bats Yes Yes Francis, 1992
Melissococcus plutonius Yes FERA, 2013; Kanbar et al., 2004
Mesembryanthemum crystallinum (crystalline iceplant)Seeds may dispersed by rabbits and mice Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Mikania micrantha (bitter vine) Yes Yes
Monilinia fructigena (brown rot) Yes Byrde and Willetts, 1977; Lack, 1989
Mononychellus tanajoa (cassava green mite)Eggs, crawlers/adults. Common pathway Yes Yes
Morinda citrifolia (Indian mulberry)Seeds are dispersed by birds, bats, and other mammals Yes Yes Nelson, 2006
Mussaenda erythrophylla (red flag bush)Seeds may be dispersed by birds Yes Hau and Corlett, 2002
Mussaenda philippica (Queen of Philippines)Seeds may be dispersed by birds Yes Alejandro et al., 2016
Myicola ostreaeThrough transfer of infected hosts Yes Yes Comps, 1972; Faasse, 2003; Gollasch et al., 2009; His, 1979; Ho and Kim, 1991; Holmes and Minchin, 1995; Kim, 2004; Preisler et al., 2009; Stock, 1993; Streftaris et al., 2005; Torchin and Mitchell, 2004; Torchin et al., 2002; Villalba et al., 1993; Wolff, 2005; Pieterse and Cairns, 1990
Myxobolus cerebralis (whirling disease agent)Dissemination mainly through movement of salmonoid fish; possibly by wildlife over shorter distances Yes Yes Koel et al., 2010
Nandina domestica (Nandina)Birds and mammals Yes Stone, 2009
Neolecanium cornuparvum (magnolia scale)Can be carried on the feet of birds and by ants Yes Herms and Nielsen, 2004; Vanek and Potter, 2010b
Nopalea cochenillifera (cochineal cactus)The species is a host organism of the cochineal insectEncyclopedia of Life, 2017
Olea europaea subsp. cuspidata (wild olive) Yes
Olea europaea subsp. europaea (European olive) Yes
Ophiostoma longicollumbark beetle? Yes Masuya et al., 1998
Orobanche cernua (nodding broomrape) Yes
Orobanche cumana (sunflower broomrape) Yes
Paederia foetida (skunkvine)Birds excrete seeds Yes Yes Takahashi and Kamitani, 2004
Paenibacillus larvae Yes Schäfer et al., 2010
Papuana huebneri (taro beetle)Taro corms or propagating material Yes Yes
Paracoccus marginatus (papaya mealybug)Active transport by mutualistic ants. Passing animals including humans Yes Tanwar et al., 2010
Paspalum conjugatum (buffalo grass)Seeds adhered to animal fur Yes Yes PIER, 2018
Paspalum millegrana (yerba brava)Seeds consumed/dispersed by birds (especially aquatic birds) Yes Yes Más and Garcia-Molinari, 2006
Paspalum virgatum (sword grass)Seeds consumed and dispersed by animals Yes Yes Sistachs and Leon, 1987
Passiflora edulis (passionfruit)Seeds can be dispersed by birds, pigs, rats, and humans Yes Yes Francis, 2000
Passiflora tarminiana (banana passionfruit)Possums and possibly rats Yes Beavon, 2007
Peanut stripe virus (groundnut stripe disease) Yes Yes
Pectobacterium brasiliense (soft rot and blackleg of ornamentals and potato) Yes Yes
Pectobacterium parmentieri (black leg disease of potato) Yes
Persicaria wallichii (Himalayan knotweed)Animals Yes
Phalaris aquatica (bulbous canarygrass) Yes
Phytophthora lateralis (Port-Orford-cedar root disease) Yes Yes Hansen et al., 2000
Pinus elliottii (slash pine) Yes Yes Richardson and Higgins, 1998
Piper aduncum (spiked pepper) Yes ISSG, 2016
Plasmodiophora brassicae (club root)Infested soil can be moved on livestock Yes
Plasmodium relictumMigratory birds Yes Laird, 1960; Warner, 1968
Plum pox virus (sharka)Several aphid species. Yes
Poa nemoralis (wood bluegrass) Yes
Pomacea canaliculata (golden apple snail)Carried by birds Yes
Pomacea maculataJuveniles and adults Yes Yes
Portulaca quadrifida (chickenweed) Yes
Prunus serotina (black cherry)Birds, mammals, small, seed-catching rodents and the dung beetle Trypocopris vernalis Yes Yes Boucault, 2009; Smith, 1975; Vanhellemont, 2009
Pseudogymnoascus destructans (white-nose syndrome fungus)Believed to primarily be spread by infected bats during local movements among roosting sites Yes Carpenter et al., 2016; Lorch et al., 2011; Wilder et al., 2015
Pseudomonas cichorii (bacterial blight of endive) Yes Yes
Pterolepis glomerata (false meadowbeauty)Dispersed by birds Yes PIER, 2015; Renner, 1994
Raffaelea lauricola (laurel wilt)R. lauricola is a fungal symbiont of an ambrosia beetle, which disseminates the fungus Yes Yes Fraedrich et al., 2008
Raffaelea quercivora (Japanese oak wilt)Vectored by the ambrosia beetle, Platypus quercivorus Yes Yes
Rapana venosa (veined rapana whelk)Fouling Chelonia mydas Yes Lezama et al., 2013
Rhamphicarpa fistulosaCattle Yes
Rhaponticum repens (Russian knapweed) Yes
Rhodomyrtus tomentosa (Downy rose-myrtle)Birds Yes Csurhes and Hankamer, 2011
Rubus argutus (sawtooth blackberry)Various bird species, especial non-native birds Yes Pieterse and Cairns, 1990; University of Hawaii Botany Department, 2012
Rubus niveus (Mysore raspberry)Ingested by birds, reptiles and other animals Yes Buddenhagen and Jewell, 2006
Rubus racemosus (black raspberry)Seeds dispersed by frugivorous birds Yes Yes
Sander vitreus (walleye)All life stages by natural dispersal Yes Yes
Schismus arabicus (Arabian schismus)Seeds carried by harvester ants Yes Rissing, 1986
Silene gallica (common catchfly)Carried on bird feet, livestock feet and harvester ants Yes
Solidago sempervirens (seaside goldenrod)Seeds dispersed by crabs and birds Yes Yes Lonard et al., 2015
Strawberry necrotic shock virus (Strawberry necrotic shock virus)Thrips transmitted. Yes Yes Sharman et al., 2011
Sugarcane grassy shoot phytoplasma (grassy shoot of sugarcane) Yes Yes
sugarcane white leaf phytoplasma (white leaf of sugarcane) Yes Yes
Thaumetopoea processionea (oak processionary moth) Yes Yes Evans, 2007
Tibouchina herbacea (cane tibouchina)Rats and birds Yes Almasi, 2000; Motooka et al., 2003
Tomato apical stunt viroid Yes Yes
Tomato leaf curl New Delhi virus (Tomato New Delhi virus) Yes Yes
Tomato yellow leaf curl virus (leaf curl) Yes Yes Czosnek, 2007b
Toxicodendron succedaneum (wax tree)Fruits dispersed by birds Yes Yes NZPCN, 2016
Triphasia trifolia (limeberry)Seeds dispersed by birds Yes PIER, 2012
Tropilaelaps Yes Yes Defra, 2005
Trypanosoma evansiMechanically transmitted by haematophagous flies; in Latin America the vampire bat is mainly responsible for dissemination Yes Desquesnes et al., 2013
Typha domingensis (southern cattail)Achenes adhere to fish scales. Yes Krattinger, 1975
Typha x glauca (hybrid cattail)Typha's fruits can adhere to fish scales Yes Krattinger, 1975
Ulva reticulata (ribbon sea lettuce)Kappaphycus alvarezii introduction in areas outside its natural occurrence may bring U. reticulata Yes Yes Ask et al., 2003
Urochloa mutica (para grass)Birds spread seeds and stem fragments Yes Yes Smith, 2002
Uromycladium spp. that cause gall rusts (Acacia gall rusts)Possible but not main means of dispersal. Living infected host material not traded. Yes Yes Triyogo and Widyastuti, 2012; Dennill et al., 1999
Utricularia gibbaWater fowl Yes Compton et al., 2012
Varroa destructor (Varroa mite) Yes Denmark et al., 2000
Wheat streak mosaic virus (wheat streak)Aceria tosichella (K.) is the only known vector for wheat streak mosaic virus. Yes Keifer, 1969; Slykhuis, 1955