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Recovery Strategy for the Red Mulberry (Morus rubra) in Canada

8. Additional Information Requirements

Information gaps still exist and need to be filled in order to meet the population and distribution objectives set out in this recovery strategy. These gaps include:

  • Census Surveys and Population Information:Searches need to continue for as yet undocumented trees, recording new distribution, abundance, demography, health, genetic variation, habitat, threats, and trends. Updates are needed for many known populations.
  • Habitat Requirements: The habitat of Red Mulberry needs to be fully characterized, including a comparison of habitats in the two regions of its occurrence.
  • Hybridization Research: An expansion of the screening of trees for hybrid status is needed. In addition, it is imperative that White Mulberry removal and Red Mulberry enhancement trials, past, present and future, be monitored to evaluate the effect on Red Mulberry recruitment and community response to tree removal so that adaptive management can take place.
  • Disease and Causative Stress Factors: Whether the attack of opportunistic pathogens is as a result of stress from drought, low soil fertility, and/or poor canopy position and the severity of those threat(s) needs to be confirmed.
  • Pollination: Pollination distances for Red, White, and hybrid Mulberry need to be determined to inform hybrid and White Mulberry management.
  • Population Viability Analysis: Information (sex, fecundity, seed predation, germination, seed dispersion, survivorship, recruitment, dispersal) needs to be gathered to complete a population viability analysis17.
  • Transplantation: Factors that will increase the success of Red Mulberry establishment (e.g. seeds sown in the field vs. the use of older transplants) need to be determined.

17 In a population viability analysis, demographic information (age or size specific survival and reproductive probabilities) are collected and incorporated into models or simulations with the intent of projecting future populations and estimating the likelihood of extinction or persistence.