Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Datasheet

Hyparrhenia rufa
(Jaragua grass)

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Datasheet

Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass)

Summary

  • Last modified
  • 20 November 2019
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Hyparrhenia rufa
  • Preferred Common Name
  • Jaragua grass
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Monocotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • H. rufa is a tall perennial grass widely naturalized in tropical and subtropical regions of the world where it has been intentionally introduced principally to enhance livestock production (

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Pictures

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PictureTitleCaptionCopyright
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. August 2009.
TitleHabit
CaptionHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. August 2009.
Copyright©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. August 2009.
HabitHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. August 2009.©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. June 2011.
TitleHabit
CaptionHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. June 2011.
Copyright©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. June 2011.
HabitHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. A warm-season, annual or perennial, erect, tufted grass to 2m tall., and often reddish tinged. A native of Africa, it is found on roadsides and disturbed areas. Tolerant of a wide range of soil types and is very drought tolerant. It is regarded as a potentially serious weed of poorer soils. Australia. June 2011.©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. Note person for scale. Australia. July 2011.
TitleHabit
CaptionHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. Note person for scale. Australia. July 2011.
Copyright©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0
Hyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. Note person for scale. Australia. July 2011.
HabitHyparrhenia rufa (Jaragua grass); habit, on a roadside verge. Note person for scale. Australia. July 2011.©Harry Rose (Macleay Grass Man)/via flickr - CC BY 2.0

Identity

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Hyparrhenia rufa (Nees) Stapf

Preferred Common Name

  • Jaragua grass

Other Scientific Names

  • Andropogon bougangensis Franch.
  • Andropogon fulvicomus Hochst.
  • Andropogon fulvicomus Hochst. ex A. Rich
  • Andropogon fulvicomus var. approximatus Hochst.
  • Andropogon rufus (Nees) Kunth
  • Andropogon xanthoblepharis Trin.
  • Cymbopogon rufus (Nees) Rendle
  • Hyparrhenia altissima Stapf
  • Hyparrhenia parvispiculata Bamps
  • Hyparrhenia yunnanensis B.S.Sun & S.Wang
  • Sorghum rufum (Nees) Kuntze
  • Sorghum xantholblepharis (Trin.) Kuntze
  • Trachypogon rufus Nees

International Common Names

  • English: giant thatching grass; thatch grass; thatching grass
  • Spanish: jaragua; pasto yaragua; yaragua
  • French: herbe rouge
  • Portuguese: capim-jaragua; capim-provisório; capim-vermelho

Local Common Names

  • : puntero
  • Australia: aragua grass
  • Brazil: capim-provisorio; capim-vermelho
  • Cuba: Brasilena; faragua; Guinea brasilena; herba jaragua; sacate rojo; súrbana
  • Ethiopia: senbelet
  • Mali: veyale
  • Puerto Rico: yaragua falsa

EPPO code

  • HYRRU (Hyparrhenia rufa)

Summary of Invasiveness

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H. rufa is a tall perennial grass widely naturalized in tropical and subtropical regions of the world where it has been intentionally introduced principally to enhance livestock production (Williams and Baruch, 2000). It is used for grazing and for hay and silage (FAO, 2014). The species has escaped from cultivation and has become invasive in the United States (i.e., Florida and Hawaii), Australia, Mexico, Brazil, Central America and the West Indies (Villaseñor and Espinosa-García, 2004; Chacón and Saborío, 2012; Oviedo Prieto et al., 2012; Randall, 2012; I3N-Brazil, 2014; USDA-NRCS, 2014). H. rufa is an aggressive grass highly tolerant to drought, grazing and fire, which grows forming tall (up to 3 m) and dense stands that outcompete and displace native vegetation (including native grasses), and disrupt successional processes (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Williams and Baruch, 2000; I3N-Brazil, 2014). 

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Monocotyledonae
  •                     Order: Cyperales
  •                         Family: Poaceae
  •                             Genus: Hyparrhenia
  •                                 Species: Hyparrhenia rufa

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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Poaceae is one of the largest families in the Angiosperms including around 707 genera and over 11,000 species widely distributed in all regions of the world (Stevens, 2012). Members of this family are mostly herbs characterized by round and commonly hollow stems (at least in the internodes), or tall woody bamboos (Gould and Shaw, 1983; Stevens, 2012). The genus Hyparrhenia includes about 50 species mostly of African origin, with some species widely distributed throughout the tropics (Wagner et al., 1999). The name of this genus is derived from the Greek word, hypo, meaning under, and arrhen, meaning male, in reference to the presence of pairs of staminate spikelets at the base of the raceme in species of this genus (Wagner et al. 1999). Several of the common names for this species reflect its use in thatching.

Description

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H. rufa is a perennial or sometimes annual, caespitose grass with short rhizomes, culms densely tufted, forming large clumps 3-25 dm tall, nodes long-pilose. Sheaths sparsely long-pilose, the hairs white, appressed at base, upper sheaths glabrous but with margins ciliate and hairs readily deciduous; ligule a firm, brownish membrane, 1-2.5 mm long; blades flat, glabrous or upper surface hirsute, 30-60 cm long, 2-8 mm wide, narrowed at base. Inflorescences large, paniculate, with numerous branches, the branches lax or contracted, fasciculate, 5-80 cm long, spathes linear-lanceolate, becoming reddish and rolled around the peduncle, 3-5 cm long, sparsely to densely long-pilose, racemes dull yellow, sometimes red-tinged, (1.5-)2-2.5 cm long, with (7-)9-14 awns per raceme pair, the awns rarely reflexed, with 1 homogamous pair of spikelets at the base of the lowest or of both racemes; raceme-bases unequal, sometimes connate, the upper one 2-3.5(-4) mm long, glabrous, rarely with a few long hairs, the articulation with the peduncle apex glabrous; sessile spikelet (3-)3.5-4.5(-5) mm long, glabrous to pubescent, but usually sparsely covered with stiff red hairs, usually glossy; pedicellate spikelet acute or rarely mucronate, callus 0.2-0.8 mm long, short and rounded to cuneate, narrowly truncate; lemma slender, filiform, approximately 2 mm long, membranous, awn arising from bifid apex, strongly twisted, geniculate, pubescent; ellipsoid to ovoid, approximately 3 mm long (Wagner et al., 1999). 

Plant Type

Top of page Annual
Grass / sedge
Perennial
Seed propagated

Distribution

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H. rufa is native to tropical and southern Africa (PROTA, 2014; USDA-ARS, 2014). It has been repeatedly introduced in regions of tropical America and Asia mainly to develop livestock production (see distribution table for details, Williams and Baruch, 2000; Clayton et al., 2014). 

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Last updated: 10 Jan 2020
Continent/Country/Region Distribution Last Reported Origin First Reported Invasive Reference Notes

Africa

AngolaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
BeninPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
BotswanaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Burkina FasoPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
BurundiPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
CameroonPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Central African RepublicPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
ChadPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Congo, Democratic Republic of thePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Congo, Republic of thePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Côte d'IvoirePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
EritreaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
EthiopiaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
GambiaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
GuineaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Guinea-BissauPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
KenyaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MadagascarPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MalawiPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MaliPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MauritaniaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MauritiusPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2014)
-RodriguesPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
MozambiquePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
NamibiaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
NigeriaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
RwandaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
SenegalPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
SeychellesPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
Sierra LeonePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
South AfricaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
TanzaniaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
TogoPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
UgandaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
ZambiaPresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)
ZimbabwePresentNativeClayton et al. (2014)

Asia

ChinaPresent, Only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedUSDA-ARS (2014)Cultivated
IndiaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
MyanmarPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
PhilippinesPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
ThailandPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)

Europe

SpainPresentCABI (Undated a)Present based on regional distribution.
-Canary IslandsPresentIntroducedInvasiveDAISIE (2014)

North America

BelizePresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
Costa RicaPresentIntroducedInvasiveCABI (Undated)Original citation: Chacon and Saborio (2012)
CubaPresent, WidespreadIntroducedInvasiveOviedo Prieto et al. (2012)
Dominican RepublicPresentIntroducedInvasiveKairo et al. (2003)Weed
El SalvadorPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
GuadeloupePresent, WidespreadIntroducedBroome et al. (2007)
GuatemalaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
HaitiPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
HondurasPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)Weed
MartiniquePresent, WidespreadIntroducedBroome et al. (2007)
MexicoPresentIntroducedInvasiveClayton et al. (2014)
NicaraguaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
PanamaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
Puerto RicoPresentIntroducedAcevedo-Rodríguez and Strong (2012)
Saint Kitts and NevisPresent, WidespreadIntroducedBroome et al. (2007)
Saint LuciaPresentIntroducedGraveson (2012)
United StatesPresentCABI (Undated a)Present based on regional distribution.
-FloridaPresentIntroducedInvasiveFlorida Exotic Pest Plant Council (2013)Invasive category II
-HawaiiPresentIntroducedInvasiveWagner et al. (1999)

Oceania

AustraliaPresentCABI (Undated a)Present based on regional distribution.
-New South WalesPresent, WidespreadIntroducedInvasiveSmith (2002)
-Northern TerritoryPresent, WidespreadIntroducedInvasiveSmith (2002)
-QueenslandPresent, WidespreadIntroducedInvasiveSmith (2002)
FijiPresentIntroducedInvasivePIER (2014)
French PolynesiaPresentIntroducedInvasiveFlorence et al. (2013)
GuamPresentIntroducedPIER (2014)

South America

ArgentinaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
BoliviaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
BrazilPresentCABI (Undated a)Present based on regional distribution.
-AmazonasPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-BahiaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-CearaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Espirito SantoPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-GoiasPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
-MaranhaoPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Mato GrossoPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Mato Grosso do SulPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
-Minas GeraisPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
-ParaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-ParaibaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-ParanaPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
-PernambucoPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-PiauiPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Rio de JaneiroPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
-Rio Grande do NortePresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Rio Grande do SulPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Santa CatarinaPresentIntroducedNaturalizedFilgueiras et al. (2014)Naturalised
-Sao PauloPresentIntroducedInvasiveI3N-Brasil (2014)
ColombiaPresentIntroducedInvasiveIABIN (2014)Weed
EcuadorPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
French GuianaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
GuyanaPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
ParaguayPresentIntroducedInvasiveIABIN (2014)
PeruPresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
SurinamePresentIntroducedClayton et al. (2014)
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedInvasiveClayton et al. (2014)

History of Introduction and Spread

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According to Williams and Baruch (2000), H. rufa is one of a number of African grasses that were introduced into the humid tropics of Central and South America during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, mostly to enhance livestock production. As with many other African grasses, this species escaped from planted areas and eventually became invasive, aided in part by the opening of native communities by fire and deforestation (Williams and Baruch, 2000). It was first recorded as naturalized in Hawaii in 1939 (Wagner et al., 1999). In the West Indies it is known from Cuba since 1915 (US National Herbarium) and in Puerto Rico since 1923 when it was reported as cultivated in an experimental station in Mayaguez (Britton and Wilson, 1923). More recent collections from Puerto Rico include naturalized populations. By the 1950s it was recorded as “widespread” across Central America, Brazil and Venezuela (IABIN, 2014). 

Risk of Introduction

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The risk of introduction of H. rufa is very high. This grass has been intentionally introduced repeatedly in tropical and subtropical regions to be used as a fodder, forage, hay, and silage crop (FAO, 2014). It has escaped from cultivation and rapidly naturalized into natural areas where it colonizes new areas forming dense stands and displacing native vegetation. This species is apomictic and shows high tolerance to drought, grazing and fire, as well as allelopathic activity, which give it a high capability of invading new areas and outcompeting native species (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Williams and Baruch, 2000; Starr et al., 2003; Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, 2011). It is also a potential seed crop contaminant and consequently unintentional introduction could also occur. 

Habitat

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In Africa, within its native range, H. rufa occurs in seasonally flooded grassland and open woodland (Weber, 2003; PROTA, 2014). Outside its native range, it is naturalized in grassland, savanna, dry forest, disturbed sites and in cultivated fields from sea-level up to 2000 m (FAO, 2014).  

Habitat List

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CategorySub-CategoryHabitatPresenceStatus
Terrestrial
Terrestrial – ManagedCultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Cultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Natural
Cultivated / agricultural land Present, no further details Productive/non-natural
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Natural
Managed grasslands (grazing systems) Present, no further details Productive/non-natural
Disturbed areas Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Disturbed areas Present, no further details Natural
Rail / roadsides Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Rail / roadsides Present, no further details Natural
Terrestrial ‑ Natural / Semi-naturalNatural forests Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Natural forests Present, no further details Natural
Scrub / shrublands Present, no further details Harmful (pest or invasive)
Scrub / shrublands Present, no further details Natural

Hosts/Species Affected

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In Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela, invasions dominated by the African grasses H. rufa and Melinis minutiflora have displaced native pasture grasses such as Trachypogon spicatus (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992). 

Biology and Ecology

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Genetics

The chromosome number reported for H. rufa is variable at 2n = 20, 30, 36, 40, 44, 45 (Rao and Mwasumbi, 1981; Sinha et al., 1990; FAO; 2014).

Reproductive Biology

H. rufa is a facultative apomictic grass. Seeds can be produced through both selfing and outcrossing, and pollination is probably wind-aided (Williams and Baruch, 2000; Clayton et al., 2014).

Environmental Requirements

H. rufa grows in dry to moist environments from sea level up to 2000 m asl with mean annual rainfall ranging from 600 mm to 1400 mm and annual mean temperatures of 15°C to 35°C (FAO, 2014). This species is well adapted to heavy grazing, drought and fire and can develop well in areas with a dry season lasting up to six months (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Wagner et al., 1999; Williams and Baruch, 2000; Starr et al., 2003; Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, 2011). It is adapted to a wide variety of soil types, but grows best on black clay soils and latosols. It can tolerate poor drainage, waterlogging and temporary flooding as well as salinity. It cannot withstand frost but can regrow after burning (FAO, 2014).

Climate

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ClimateStatusDescriptionRemark
Af - Tropical rainforest climate Preferred > 60mm precipitation per month
Am - Tropical monsoon climate Preferred Tropical monsoon climate ( < 60mm precipitation driest month but > (100 - [total annual precipitation(mm}/25]))
As - Tropical savanna climate with dry summer Preferred < 60mm precipitation driest month (in summer) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
Aw - Tropical wet and dry savanna climate Preferred < 60mm precipitation driest month (in winter) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 10 35

Rainfall

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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Dry season duration06number of consecutive months with <40 mm rainfall
Mean annual rainfall6001400mm; lower/upper limits

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • seasonally waterlogged

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • alkaline
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • heavy
  • light
  • medium

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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H. rufa spreads by seeds. It produces seeds with long bristles which are capable of catching on people or animals that walk past the plant. The seeds are also able to disperse on the wind after fires and germinate well in these conditions (Starr et al., 2003). 

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
DisturbanceThis species easily colonizes disturbed areas Yes Yes Williams and Baruch, 2000
Escape from confinement or garden escapeEscaped from planted areas Yes Yes Williams and Baruch, 2000
ForageIntroduced to enhance livestock production Yes Yes Williams and Baruch, 2000

Impact Summary

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CategoryImpact
Economic/livelihood Positive and negative
Environment (generally) Positive and negative
Human health Positive and negative

Environmental Impact

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H. rufa is a very aggressive grass that has become invasive in many tropical and subtropical regions of the world. It forms dense monospecific stands displacing native grasses and forbs, preventing the establishment of other species and transforming native savannas and forests into species-pure stands (Weber, 2003). H. rufa burns readily and resprouts rapidly following fire; the consequent grass-fire interaction is thereby capable of maintaining cleared forest land as a derived savanna or grassland, preventing succession back to forest. In addition, H. rufa is able to invade otherwise intact native-dominated savanna ecosystems (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992).

In Central America, H. rufa has received the most attention from ecologists, since when it is not heavily grazed it forms tall, dense stands that burn more readily and intensely than native grasslands (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992). H. rufa -fueled fires can burn into successional and even intact tropical forest and represent a serious threat to preservation of threatened dry ecosystems in Guanacaste National Park in Costa Rica and in many dry, semiarid and arid zones in Venezuela, Brazil and Colombia (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Williams and Baruch, 2000; I3N-Brazil, 2014; IABIN, 2014). Additionally, in Brazil, Colombia, and Venezuela, Hyparrhenia invasions have displaced native pasture grasses such as Trachypogon spicatus (D’Antonio and Vitousek, 1992; Williams and Baruch, 2000). 

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Has a broad native range
  • Abundant in its native range
  • Highly adaptable to different environments
  • Is a habitat generalist
  • Tolerates, or benefits from, cultivation, browsing pressure, mutilation, fire etc
  • Pioneering in disturbed areas
  • Benefits from human association (i.e. it is a human commensal)
  • Fast growing
  • Has high reproductive potential
  • Reproduces asexually
Impact outcomes
  • Altered trophic level
  • Damaged ecosystem services
  • Ecosystem change/ habitat alteration
  • Increases vulnerability to invasions
  • Modification of fire regime
  • Modification of hydrology
  • Modification of nutrient regime
  • Modification of successional patterns
  • Monoculture formation
  • Reduced native biodiversity
  • Threat to/ loss of native species
Impact mechanisms
  • Allelopathic
  • Competition - monopolizing resources
  • Competition - shading
  • Competition - smothering
  • Herbivory/grazing/browsing
  • Interaction with other invasive species
  • Rapid growth
  • Rooting
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally accidentally
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult to identify/detect as a commodity contaminant

Uses

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H. rufa is one of the most commercialized forage and fodder grasses because it is adapted to intense grazing and tolerates drought and fire (FAO, 2014). This species is able to persist, and to produce high live-weight gains under intense grazing regimes. It is also planted for hay and as a silage grass, and can be used for thatching, straw, and as pulp for making paper (FAO, 2014). 

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed
  • Forage

Materials

  • Fibre

Prevention and Control

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Due to the variable regulations around (de)registration of pesticides, your national list of registered pesticides or relevant authority should be consulted to determine which products are legally allowed for use in your country when considering chemical control. Pesticides should always be used in a lawful manner, consistent with the product's label.

Small plants may be dug out by hand. It can be also controlled with a foliar application of 2% Roundup [glyphosate] (Starr et al., 2003). For both treatments, because seeds persist in the ground, follow-up controls are necessary.

References

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Acevedo-Rodríguez P; Strong MT, 2012. Catalogue of the Seed Plants of the West Indies. Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, 98:1192 pp. Washington DC, USA: Smithsonian Institution. http://botany.si.edu/Antilles/WestIndies/catalog.htm

Britton NL; Wilson P, 1923. Scientific Survey of Porto Rico and the Virgin Islands Vol. 5, Part 1. New York, USA: New York Academy of Sciences, 626 pp.

Broome R; Sabir K; Carrington S, 2007. Plants of the Eastern Caribbean. Online database. Barbados: University of the West Indies. http://ecflora.cavehill.uwi.edu/index.html

Chacón E; Saborío G, 2012. Red Interamericana de Información de Especies Invasoras, Costa Rica ([English title not available]). San José, Costa Rica: Asociación para la Conservación y el Estudio de la Biodiversidad. http://invasoras.acebio.org

Clayton WD; Govaerts R; Harman KT; Williamson H; Vorontsova M, 2014. GrassBase - The Online World Grass Flora. http://www.kew.org/data/grasses-db.html

DAISIE, 2014. Delivering Alien Invasive Species Inventories for Europe. European Invasive Alien Species Gateway. www.europe-aliens.org/default.do

D'Antonio CM; Vitousek PM, 1992. Biological invasions by exotic grasses, the grass/fire cycle, and global chance. Annual Review in Ecology and Systematics, 23:63-87.

FAO, 2014. Grassland species profiles. http://www.fao.org/ag/AGP/AGPC/doc/Gbase/Default.htm

Filgueiras TS; Reis PA; Oliveira RC, 2014. Hyparrhenia in Lista de Espécies da Flora do Brasil (Hyparrhenia in the list of species of the flora of Brazil). Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro.

Florence J; Chevillotte H; Ollier C; Meyer J-Y, 2013. Base de données botaniques Nadeaud de l'Herbier de la Polynésie Française (PAP) (Botanical database of the Nadeaud Herbarium of French Polynesia). http://www.herbier-tahiti.pf

Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council, 2013. Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council's 2013 List of Invasive Plant Species. http://www.fleppc.org/list/2013/index.htm

Gould KW; Shaw RB, 1983. Grass Systematics. Second Edition., USA: Texas A&M University Press, 412 pp.

Graveson R, 2012. Plants of Saint Lucia. http://www.saintlucianplants.com

I3N-Brasil, 2014. Base de dados nacional de espécies exóticas invasora (National database of exotic invasive species). Florianópolis - SC, Brazil: I3N Brasil, Instituto Hórus de Desenvolvimento e Conservação Ambiental. http://i3n.institutohorus.org.br

IABIN, 2014. Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network (IABIN). Red de Informacion sobre especies invasoras ([English title not available]). http://www.oas.org/en/sedi/dsd/iabin/

Kairo M; Ali B; Cheesman O; Haysom K; Murphy S, 2003. Invasive species threats in the Caribbean region. Report to the Nature Conservancy. Curepe, Trinidad and Tobago: CAB International, 132 pp. http://www.issg.org/database/species/reference_files/Kairo%20et%20al,%202003.pdf

Oviedo Prieto R; Herrera Oliver P; Caluff MG, et al. , 2012. National list of invasive and potentially invasive plants in the Republic of Cuba - 2011. (Lista nacional de especies de plantas invasoras y pontencialmente invasoras en la República de Cuba - 2011.) Bissea: Boletín sobre Conservación de Plantad del Jardín Botánico Nacional de Cuba, 6(Special Issue 1):24-96.

PIER, 2014. Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk. Honolulu, USA: HEAR, University of Hawaii. http://www.hear.org/pier/index.html

PROTA, 2014. PROTA4U web database. Grubben GJH, Denton OA, eds. Wageningen, Netherlands: Plant Resources of Tropical Africa. http://www.prota4u.org/search.asp

Queensland Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries, 2011. Special edition of Environmental Weeds of Australia for Biosecurity Queensland., Australia: The University of Queensland and Department of Primary Industries and Fisheries. http://keyserver.lucidcentral.org/weeds/data/03030800-0b07-490a-8d04-0605030c0f01/media/Html/Index.htm

Rao PN; Mwasumbi LB, 1981. Chromosome number reports LXXII. Taxon, 30:701-702.

Sinha RR; Bhardwaj AK; Singh RK, 1990. SOCGI plant chromosome number reports-IX. Journal of Cytology and Genetics, 25:140-143.

Smith NM, 2002. Weeds of the wet/dry tropics of Australia - a field guide., Australia: Environment Centre NT, Inc, 112 pp.

Starr F; Starr K; Loope LL, 2003. Hyparrhenia rufa: Thatching grass. Plants of Hawaii. Haleakala Field Station, Hawaii, Hawaii: US Geological Survey, Biological Resources Division. http://www.hear.org/pier/pdf/pohreports/hyparrhenia_rufa.pdf

Stevens PF, 2012. Angiosperm Phylogeny Website. http://www.mobot.org/MOBOT/research/APweb/

USDA-ARS, 2014. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online Database. Beltsville, Maryland, USA: National Germplasm Resources Laboratory. https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomysearch.aspx

USDA-NRCS, 2014. The PLANTS Database. Baton Rouge, USA: National Plant Data Center. http://plants.usda.gov/

Villaseñor JL; Espinosa-Garcia FJ, 2004. The alien flowering plants of Mexico. Diversity and Distributions, 10(2):113-123.

Wagner WL; Herbst DR; Sohmer SH, 1999. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawaii. Revised edition. Honolulu, Hawaii, USA: University of Hawaii Press/Bishop Museum Press, 1919 pp.

Weber E, 2003. Invasive Plant Species of the World. A Reference Guide to Environmental Weeds. Wallingford, UK: CABI Publishing.

Williams DG; Baruch Z, 2000. African grass invasion in the Americas: ecosystem consequences and the role of ecophysiology. Biological Invasions, 2:123-140.

Distribution References

Acevedo-Rodríguez P, Strong M T, 2012. Catalogue of the Seed Plants of the West Indies. Washington, DC, USA: Smithsonian Institution. 1192 pp. http://botany.si.edu/Antilles/WestIndies/catalog.htm

Broome R, Sabir K, Carrington S, 2007. Plants of the Eastern Caribbean., Barbados: University of the West Indies. http://ecflora.cavehill.uwi.edu/index.html

CABI, Undated. Compendium record. Wallingford, UK: CABI

CABI, Undated a. CABI Compendium: Status inferred from regional distribution. Wallingford, UK: CABI

Clayton WD, Govaerts R, Harman KT, Williamson H, Vorontsova M, 2014. GrassBase - The Online World Grass Flora., http://www.kew.org/data/grasses-db.html

DAISIE, 2014. Delivering Alien Invasive Species Inventories for Europe. http://www.europe-aliens.org/

Filgueiras TS, Reis PA, Oliveira RC, 2014. Hyparrhenia in the list of species of the flora of Brazil. (Hyparrhenia in Lista de Espécies da Flora do Brasil)., Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Jardim Botânico do Rio de Janeiro.

Florence J, Chevillotte H, Ollier C, Meyer J-Y, 2013. Nadeaud botanical database of the Herbarium of French Polynesia. (Base de données botaniques Nadeaud de l'Herbier de la Polynésie Française (PAP))., https://nadeaud.ilm.pf/

Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council, 2013. Florida Exotic Pest Plant Council's 2013 List of Invasive Plant Species., http://www.fleppc.org/list/2013/index.htm

Graveson R, 2012. Plants of Saint Lucia., http://www.saintlucianplants.com

I3N-Brasil, 2014. National database of exotic invasive species. (Base de dados nacional de espécies exóticas invasora)., Florianópolis - SC, Brazil: I3N Brasil, Instituto Hórus de Desenvolvimento e Conservação Ambiental. http://i3n.institutohorus.org.br

IABIN, 2014. [English title not available]. (Red de Informacion sobre especies invasoras)., Inter-American Biodiversity Information Network (IABIN). http://www.oas.org/en/sedi/dsd/iabin/

Kairo M, Ali B, Cheesman O, Haysom K, Murphy S, 2003. Invasive species threats in the Caribbean region. Report to the Nature Conservancy. In: Invasive species threats in the Caribbean region. Report to the Nature Conservancy. Curepe, Trinidad and Tobago: CAB International. 132 pp. http://www.issg.org/database/species/reference_files/Kairo%20et%20al,%202003.pdf

Oviedo Prieto R, Herrera Oliver P, Caluff M G, et al, 2012. National list of invasive and potentially invasive plants in the Republic of Cuba - 2011. (Lista nacional de especies de plantas invasoras y potencialmente invasoras en la República de Cuba - 2011). Bissea: Boletín sobre Conservación de Plantas del Jardín Botánico Nacional de Cuba. 6 (Special Issue No. 1), 22-96.

PIER, 2014. Pacific Islands Ecosystems at Risk., Honolulu, USA: HEAR, University of Hawaii. http://www.hear.org/pier/index.html

Smith NM, 2002. Weeds of the wet/dry tropics of Australia - a field guide., Australia: Environment Centre NT, Inc. 112 pp.

USDA-ARS, 2014. Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Online Database. Beltsville, Maryland, USA: National Germplasm Resources Laboratory. https://npgsweb.ars-grin.gov/gringlobal/taxon/taxonomysimple.aspx

Wagner W L, Herbst D R, Sohmer S H, 1999. Manual of the flowering plants of Hawai'i, Vols. 1 & 2. Honolulu, USA: University of Hawai'i Press/Bishop Museum Press. 1918 + [1] pp.

Links to Websites

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WebsiteURLComment
FAO Grassland species profileshttp://www.fao.org/ag/agp/AGPC/doc/gbase/Default.htm
GISD/IASPMR: Invasive Alien Species Pathway Management Resource and DAISIE European Invasive Alien Species Gatewayhttps://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.m93f6Data source for updated system data added to species habitat list.
PIERhttp://www.hear.org/pier/index.html

Contributors

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27/06/14 Original text by:

Julissa Rojas-Sandoval, Department of Botany-Smithsonian NMNH, Washington DC, USA

Pedro Acevedo-Rodríguez, Department of Botany-Smithsonian NMNH, Washington DC, USA

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