Ruppia maritima

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Ruppia maritima
Ruppia maritima South Chungcheong, South Korea 27 Jun 2006.jpg
Ruppia maritima
Conservation status
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Monocots
Order: Alismatales
Family: Ruppiaceae
Genus: Ruppia
Species: R. maritima
Binomial name
Ruppia maritima
L.

Ruppia maritima is a species of aquatic plant known by the common names widgeongrass, ditch-grass and tassel pondweed. Despite its Latin name, it is not a marine plant; is perhaps best described as a salt-tolerant freshwater species.[1] The generic name Ruppia was dedicated by Linnaeus to the German botanist Heinrich Bernhard Ruppius (1689-1719) and the specific name (maritima) translates to "of the sea".

Distribution[edit]

It can be found throughout the world, most often in coastal areas, where it grows in brackish water bodies, such as marshes. It is a dominant plant in a great many shoreline regions. It does not grow well in turbid water or low-oxygen substrates.[2]

Description[edit]

Ruppia maritima is a thread-thin, grasslike annual or perennial[1] herb which grows from a rhizome anchored shallowly in the wet substrate. It produces a long, narrow, straight or loosely coiled inflorescence tipped with two tiny flowers. The plant often self-pollinates, but the flowers also release pollen that reaches other plants as it floats away on bubbles.[3]

The fruits are drupelets. They are dispersed in the water and inside the guts of fish and waterbirds that eat them.[3] The plant also reproduces vegetatively by sprouting from its rhizome to form colonies.[3]

Taxonomy[edit]

On the basis of molecular phylogenetic analyses, a species complex, named R. maritima complex, had been discerned,[4] which was then extended to include eight lineages.[5]

Wetlands and wildlife[edit]

This plant is an important part of the diet of many species of waterfowl. In many areas, wetlands restoration begins with the recovery and protection of this plant.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Kantrud, H. A. (1991). Classification and Distribution - Wigeongrass (Ruppia maritima L.): A literature review. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  2. ^ Kantrud, H. A. (1991). Habitat - Wigeongrass (Ruppia maritima L.): A literature review. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  3. ^ a b c Kantrud, H. A. (1991). Development and Reproduction - Wigeongrass (Ruppia maritima L.): A literature review. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
  4. ^ Ito Y., T. Ohi-Toma, J. Murata & Nr. Tanaka (2010) Hybridization and polyploidy of an aquatic plant, Ruppia (Ruppiaceae), inferred from plastid and nuclear DNA phylogenies American Journal of Botany 97: 1156-1167
  5. ^ Ito Y., T. Ohi-Toma, J. Murata & Nr. Tanaka (2013) Comprehensive phylogenetic analyses of the Ruppia maritima complex focusing on taxa from the Mediterranean Journal of Plant Research 126: xxxx-xxxx
  6. ^ Kantrud, H. A. (1991). Introduction - Wigeongrass (Ruppia maritima L.): A literature review. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

External links[edit]