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Environ Pollut. 1997;95(2):259-68.

Effects of herbicides on two submersed aquatic macrophytes, Potamogeton pectinatus L. and Myriophyllum sibiricum Komarov, in a prairie wetland.

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  • 1Canadian Wildlife Service, 115 Perimeter Road, Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, S7N 0X4, Canada.


Clopyralid, picloram, 2,4-D and a mixture of 2,4-D plus picloram, (Tordon 202C) were added to the water of 1 m square enclosures in a prairie wetland in Saskatchewan, Canada to produce concentrations of 0.01 and 0.1 mg active ingredient litre(-1). Effects on the submersed macrophytes, Potamogeton pectinatus and Myriophyllum sibiricum, were monitored by taking repeated measurements of plant weight, flower and tuber production and inspecting for injuries at 30 and 60 days after application. Clopyralid did not inhibit weight gain (growth) in either species, but stimulated growth and flowering by M. sibiricum at 0.01 mg litre(-1) and tuber production by P. pectinatus at both rates. The low rate of 2,4-D stimulated flowering by M. sibiricum and tuber production by P. pectinatus, whereas the high rate inhibited growth of M. sibiricum and injured both species. Picloram did not affect growth of either species, but injured M. sibiricum at both concentrations and inhibited flowering at 0.1 mg litre(-1). Tordon 202C at 0.1 mg litre(-1) caused reduced growth and flowering in M. sibiricum and injured both species; 0.01 mg litre(-1) also injured M. sibiricum. Mortality resulted only from Tordon 202C and 2,4-D. Field data are lacking to assess the extent to which submerged macrophytes in prairie ponds are exposed to harmful concentrations of herbicide from aerial spraying, drift from ground application, runoff or wind erosion of soil.

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