Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Livestock (pathway vector)



Livestock (pathway vector)


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

  • Livestock (pathway vector)

Species Transported by Vector

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SpeciesNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Acacia glauca (wild dividivi) Yes
Acacia hockii Yes Gwyne, 1969
Acacia mearnsii (black wattle)Also wild animals Yes Milton et al., 2003
Acanthospermum australe (spiny-bur) Yes
Achyranthes aspera (devil's horsewhip) Yes Yes Bullock and Primack, 1977
Aegilops cylindrica Yes
Agropyron cristatum (crested wheatgrass)attachment to sheep fleece Yes Yes Bläss et al., 2010
Albizia lebbeck (Indian siris)Seeds are eaten and dispersed by cattle Yes Yes Gwyne, 1969; Gwyne, 1969
Alopecurus myosuroides (black-grass) Yes Salisbury, 1961
Alyssum desertorum (desert madwort)By seed ingestion and defecation in domestic and wild animals; on animals' bodies Yes Olliff et al., 2001
Amaranthus tuberculatus (rough-fruited water-hemp)Seeds and plant parts can adhere to livestock and other animals Yes Costea et al., 2005
Ammotragus lervia (aoudad)Originally introduced as an appealing exotic game species in some Western countries (USA and Spain) Yes Yes Cassinello, 1998
Argemone mexicana (Mexican poppy)Seeds adhering to animals Yes Gwyne, 1969
Aristida ternipes (spidergrass)Seeds attached to fur and hair Yes Yes Allred, 2003
Austrocylindropuntia cylindrica (cane cactus) Yes
Austrocylindropuntia subulata (Eve’s needle cactus) Yes
Avipoxvirus Yes Yes
Axonopus fissifolius Yes
Balanites aegyptiaca (simple-thorned torchwood)Fruits are eaten by livestock Yes Orwa et al., 2009
Bassia hyssopifolia (fivehook bassia) Yes Yes
Bidens pilosa (blackjack)Seed attached to animal fur Yes Yes Sankaran and Suresh, 2013
Blattella germanica (German cockroach) Yes Booth et al., 2011
Boerhavia coccinea (scarlet spiderling)sticky seeds attach to animals Yes Jurado et al., 1991
Boerhavia diffusa (red spiderling)Sticky fruits adhere to animal fur Yes PIER, 2015
Bothriochloa pertusa (pitted beard grass)Seeds, plant fragments Yes
Brachypodium sylvaticum (slender false brome)Seeds, likely Yes Yes Heinken and Raudnitschka, 2002
Brassica tournefortii (African mustard)Seeds Yes Yes Minnich and Sanders, 2000
Bunias orientalis (Turkish warty-cabbage) Yes Yes
Carduus pycnocephalus (Italian thistle) Yes
Carpobrotus edulis (hottentot fig) Yes
Cassia grandis (pink shower)Cattle feed on pods and seeds germinate, although they rarely survive in open pastures Yes Janzen, 1971
Cecropia peltata (trumpet tree)Wild animals Yes Gwyne, 1969
Cenchrus biflorus (Indian sandbur) Yes
Cenchrus ciliaris (Buffel grass) Yes
Centaurea melitensis (Maltese starthistle) Yes DiTomaso and Healy, 2007
Centaurea solstitialis (yellow starthistle) Yes
Ceratocephala testiculata (bur buttercup)seeds attach to skin, wool or feathers Yes
Chromolaena odorata (Siam weed) Yes
Chrysomya bezziana (Old World screw-worm)OWS Larvae via live sheep trade; OWS Adults via returning, empty livestock ships Yes Yes Kloft et al., 1981; Rajapaksa and Spradbery, 1989
Clitoria ternatea (butterfly-pea)Seeds dispersed in cattle dung Yes Yes Staples, 1992
Cochliomyia hominivorax (New World screwworm)Moderate risk Yes Yes
Cornus sericea (redosier dogwood)Eaten and likely transported by water Yes Kelly, 1990
Crassula helmsii (Australian swamp stonecrop) Yes Wicks, 2004
Crataegus monogyna (hawthorn) Yes Alverson and Sigg, 2008
Crotalaria retusa (rattleweed)Seeds can be dispersed by animals Yes Yes Flora of China Editorial Committee, 2012
Cryptostegia madagascariensis (Madagascar rubbervine)Seeds Yes Yes PIER, 2012
Cylindropuntia fulgida (jumping cholla)As shown for other Cylindropuntia species Yes Deltoro et al., 2014
Cylindropuntia rosea (hudson pear)As shown for other Cylindropuntia species Yes Deltoro et al., 2014
Cymbopogon nardus (citronella grass) Yes NARO, 2004
Cynara cardunculus (cardoon)Seeds Yes Kelly, 2000
Cynodon nlemfuensis (African Bermuda-grass)Seeds, stolens Yes Yes Cook et al., 2005
Cynodon plectostachyus (African stargrass)Pasture grass Yes Cook et al., 2005
Cynoglossum amabile (Chinese forget-me-not)Seeds Yes Melcher et al., 2000
Cytisus scoparius (Scotch broom)Seeds Yes Yes Gwyne, 1969
Datura innoxia (downy thorn apple) Yes
Daucus carota (carrot)Can attach to sheep wool for up to 6 months Yes Yes Manzano and Malo, 2006
Descurainia sophia (flixweed) Yes Blackshaw and Rode, 1991
Desmodium incanum (creeping beggerweed)Sticky seeds could attach to furs, pelts etc. Yes Yes Mori and Brown, 1998
Dichanthium caricosum (nadi blue grass)Eaten by cattle, sheep, goats and horses Yes Yes Cook et al., 2005
Digitaria ciliaris (southern crabgrass)Seeds Yes Yes Holm et al., 1979
Digitaria insularis (sourgrass) Yes
Echinochloa crus-galli (barnyard grass)Seeds Yes Yes Waterhouse, 1994
Eichhornia paniculata (Brazilian water hyacinth) Yes Husband and Barrett, 1998
Elaeagnus umbellata (autumn olive)Seeds are eaten by animals Yes USDA-NRCS, 2016
Elephantopus mollis (elephant's foot) Yes Queensland Government, 2014
Eragrostis lehmanniana (Lehmann lovegrass)Seeds dispersed as livestock is sold or transported Yes Yes USDA Forest Service, 2014
Eragrostis plana (South African lovegrass)Seeds keep viable in cattle digestive tract and are dispersed as livestock is sold or transported Yes Yes Reis, 1993
Erythrina berteroana (coralbean)Leaves and seeds consumed by livestock Yes Orwa et al., 2009
Euphorbia terracina (false caper) Yes
Festuca arundinacea (tall fescue)Seeds attach to animals Yes
Fimbristylis littoralis (lesser fimbristylis)Seeds eaten by livestock Yes Yes Holm et al., 1977
Foeniculum vulgare (fennel) Yes
Galinsoga parviflora (gallant soldier) Yes Yes Damalas, 2008
Galinsoga quadriradiata (shaggy soldier)Seeds can be dispersed adhered to fur Yes Yes Kabuce and Priede, 2010
Globodera rostochiensis (yellow potato cyst nematode) Yes
Glyceria maxima (reed sweet-grass) Yes Parsons and Cuthbertson, 1992
Heracleum sosnowskyi (Sosnowskyi's hogweed)Seeds may get attached to animal fur (e.g. sheep and cattle) Yes Yes Kabuce, 2006
Hyoscyamus niger (black henbane)potential movement as seed; despite toxicity, livestock will consume on occasion Yes LaFantasie, 2008
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass) Yes Yes Williams and Baruch, 2000
Hyptis brevipes (lesser roundweed) Yes PIER, 2017
Indigofera spicata (creeping indigo)Hooves and waste of livestock who graze on it. Yes Morton, 1989
Indigofera trita (Asian indigo)Seeds Yes Yes PROTA, 2014
Indigofera trita subsp. scabra (Asian Indigo)Seeds Yes Yes PROTA, 2014
Isatis tinctoria (dyer's woad)Fruits Yes Yes Farah et al., 1988
Jatropha curcas (jatropha) Yes Pitt, 1999
Jatropha gossypiifolia (bellyache bush) Yes
Juncus effusus (common rush) Yes
Juncus ensifolius (swordleaf rush) Yes
Juncus planifolius (broadleaf rush) Yes Loope et al., 1992
Lagenaria siceraria (bottle gourd)Fruits Yes Yes PROTA, 2018
Lepidium latifolium (perennial pepperweed) Yes
Leucaena leucocephala (leucaena) Yes
Leucanthemum vulgare (oxeye daisy) Yes
Limnocharis flava (yellow bur-head) Yes
Limnomysis benedeniInadvertent stocking with commercially interesting animals. Yes Yes Aladin et al., 2003; Dumont, 2006; Velde et al., 2000; Wittmann and Ariani, 2009
Linaria vulgaris (common toadflax) Yes Zouhar, 2003
Lythrum salicaria (purple loosestrife)Stuck on mud to, also, more importantly on wild animals Yes Thompson et al., 1987
Macroptilium atropurpureum (siratro)Seed ingested and dispersed by cattle Yes Gwyne, 1969
Martynia annua (tiger's claw)Seeds/“clawed” fruit Yes Yes Weeds of Australia, 2016
Medicago lupulina (black medick)Forage plant for livestock Yes Yes USDA-ARS, 2017
Medicago polymorpha (bur clover) Yes Yes
Mentha pulegium (pennyroyal) Yes Yes
Mesosphaerum pectinatum (comb bushmint) Yes
Mikania micrantha (bitter vine) Yes
Mimosa arenosa (elegant mimosa)Seeds Yes Yes Francis, 2004
Mimosa casta (graceful mimosa)Forage for goats Yes Yes Muir, 2009
Mimosa ceratonia (climbing mimosa)Forage for goats Yes Yes Muir, 2009
Mimosa pudica (sensitive plant) Yes
Mononychellus tanajoa (cassava green mite)Eggs, crawlers/adults. Rare pathway Yes
Neonotonia wightii (perennial soybean)Viable seed passed by livestock Yes Gardener et al., 1993a; Gardener et al., 1993b
Ocimum gratissimum (African basil)Seed and stem fragment Yes Yes PROSEA, 2018
Oldenlandia lancifolia (calycose mille graines)Seeds Yes Yes Pringle, 1982
Onopordum illyricum (Illyrian thistle) Yes
Oplismenus hirtellus subsp. undulatifolius (wavyleaf basketgrass) Yes
Opuntia engelmannii (cactus apple) Yes
Orobanche ramosa (branched broomrape)Grazing animals Yes Jacobsohn, 1984
Parthenium hysterophorus (parthenium weed)Attaches to animal fur Yes PAG, 2000
Paspalum conjugatum (buffalo grass)Seeds adhered to animal fur Yes Yes Manidool, 1992
Paspalum millegrana (yerba brava)Young plants are consumed by cattle Yes Yes Más and Garcia-Molinari, 2006
Paspalum notatum (Bahia grass)Seeds dispersed in manure Yes Violi, 2000
Paspalum urvillei (Vasey grass) Yes
Paspalum virgatum (sword grass)Young plants consumed by cattle Yes Yes Sistachs and Leon, 1987
Passiflora edulis (passionfruit)Seeds Yes Yes Francis, 2000
Passiflora tarminiana (banana passionfruit)Feral pigs in Hawaii and, possibly, New Zealand Yes Beavon, 2007; PIER, 2012
Pennisetum purpureum (elephant grass)Contaminant in fodder and silage crops Yes Yes Gwyne, 1969
Pennisetum setaceum (fountain grass)Seeds Yes Halvorson and Guertin, 2003
Petiveria alliacea (guinea hen weed)Seeds Yes Yes Vibrans, 2009
Phalaris aquatica (bulbous canarygrass) Yes
Phleum pratense (timothy grass) Yes
Phytophthora alni species complex (alder Phytophthora)Movement of contaminated soil by grazing animals; suggested but not specifically demonstrated Yes Redondo et al., 2015
Poa annua (annual meadowgrass)Seeds can be dispersed adhered to livestock Yes Yes Holm et al., 1997
Polygonum arenastrum (common knotweed)Seeds Yes Wells and Lauenroth, 2007
Polypogon monspeliensis (annual beard grass) Yes Yes
Portulaca pilosa (kiss-me-quick) Yes
Prunus serotina (black cherry)Cattle are reported to eat P. serotina fruits Yes Yes Ehrenburg et al., 2008
Pueraria phaseoloides (tropical kudzu)Seeds Yes Yes Cook et al., 2005
Rhamphicarpa fistulosaFree-grazing cattle can transport seeds on fur and hooves and through ingestion and excretion Yes
Rubus rosifolius (roseleaf raspberry)Fruits are often consumed by cattle Yes Yes ISSG, 2010
Salvia occidentalis (West Indian sage)The viscid calyces often adhere to the feathers and feet of small birds e.g. chickens Yes Fern, 2014; Standley and Williams, 1973
Salvia splendens (scarlet sage) Yes Yes DAISIE, 2014
Salvinia auriculata (giant salvinia) Yes Yes ISSG, 2009
Sesbania sericea (silky sesban)Seeds Yes Yes Francis, 2000
Setaria verticillata (bristly foxtail)Attached to fur/wool Yes
Sida acuta (sida) Yes Smith, 2002
Sida repens (Javanese fanpetals)Fruits attached to fur Yes Yes Raju and Rani, 2016
Solanum capsicoides (cockroach berry)Associated with pastures and areas disturbed by cows Yes Markle et al., 2014
Solanum viarum (tropical soda apple)seeds Yes Yes Mullahey et al., 2006
Sonchus asper (spiny sow-thistle)Seeds consumed and dispersed by livestock Yes Yes Hutchinson et al., 1984
Sonchus oleraceus (common sowthistle)Seeds as contaminant Yes Yes Holm et al., 1977
Sorghum halepense (Johnson grass) Yes
Spermacoce verticillata (shrubby false buttonwood) Yes
Sporobolus africanus (rat’s tail grass) Yes
Sporobolus pyramidalis (giant rat’s tail grass) Yes Yes
Squalius cephalus (European chub) Yes
Stachytarpheta cayennensis (blue snakeweed) Yes Weeds of Australia, 2011
Taeniatherum caput-medusae (medusahead wildrye) Yes Yes Nafus and Davies, 2014
Tagetes erecta (Mexican marigold)Adhered to animals Yes Yes Cortés-Flores et al., 2013
Thecaphora solani (potato smut)carrying soil Yes Torres, 2001
Trifolium angustifolium (narrow-leaf clover)Seeds attach to the fleece of sheep during grazing Yes Manzano and Malo, 2006
Trifolium hybridum (alsike clover) Yes
Tripsacum dactyloides (eastern gamagrass)Seeds Yes Cook et al., 2005
Triumfetta bogotensis (parquet bur)Burs attach to animal hair, including horses Yes Standley and Steyermark, 1949
Triumfetta rhomboidea (diamond burbark)Burs attach to animals’ hair Yes Yes Raju and Rani, 2017
Triumfetta semitriloba (burweed) Yes
Ulex europaeus (gorse)Seeds in mud on hooves Yes Tulang, 1992
Urena sinuata (bur mallow)Spiny fruits and barbed seed Yes Yes Liogier, 1988
Urochloa distachya (signal grass)Forage grass Yes Yes New Zealand Ministry for Primary Industries, 2015
Urochloa mutica (para grass)Seeds, runners and cuttings Yes Yes Cook et al., 2005
Urtica dioica (stinging nettle)seeds adhere to hair or fur, or can pass through digestive systems Yes
Vachellia macracantha (porknut)disperse seeds after eating pods Yes Yes Casiva et al., 2004
Ventenata dubia (North Africa grass)When seeds are present Yes Yes
Vulpia myuros (annual fescue)Seeds Yes Wallace, 1997
Xanthium spinosum (bathurst burr) Yes Yes PIER, 2013
Xanthomonas vasicola pv. vasculorum (bacterial leaf streak of corn) Yes Sivitis, 2017
Ziziphus mauritiana (jujube) Yes Land Protection, 2006