We compared the extent to which exotic species are associated with horse trails, old roads, and intact communities within three native vegetation types in Ozark National Scenic Riverways, Missouri. We used a general linear model procedure and a Bonferroni multiple comparison test to compare exotic species richness, exotic to native species ratios, and exotic species percent cover across three usage types (horse trails, old roads, and intact communities) and three community types (river bottoms, upland waterways, and glades). We found that both exotic species richness and the ratio of exotic species to native species were greater in plots located along horse trails than in plots located either in intact native communities or along old roads. Native community types did not differ in the number of exotic species present, but river bottoms had a significantly higher exotic to native species ratio than glades. Continued introduction of exotic plant propagules may explain why horse trails contain more exotic species than other areas in a highly disturbed landscape.
Additional publication details
Exotic plant species associations with horse trails, old roads, and intact native communities in the Missouri Ozarks