Recently, the Red Cabomba (Cabombafurcata) emerged as a tourist attraction near Kozhikode, Kerala. Locals call it ‘Pink bloom’. Large numbers of tourists were attracted to Kozhikode’s Avala Pandi near Perambra.
What is Cabomba?
- Cabomba is a perennial aquatic plant having divided submerged leaves in the shape of a fan. It is native to Central and South America.
- The plants, which usually prefer freshwater bodies, are used as ornamental plants by aquarists and oxygenating plants for fish tanks.
- Aquarium trade has introduced these to many parts of the world such as Australia. Green Cabomba is mostly used in aquariums. Green Cabomba is an herbaceous plant found in North and South America.
Pink Bloom- A threat to waterbodies
- As per the research team of the Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI), the plants have become a major threat to the fresh water bodies in Kerala.
- Cabomba is expected to decrease the diversity of native aquatic plants, affect the yield of freshwater species, and affect the water quality.
- Cabomba has a capacity of spreading fast by the propagation of stem fragments and forming dense stands in water bodies that affect native plants.
- An increase of Cabomba can result in choking of waterbodies and drainage canals.
How to control Cabomba?
Researchers suggest removing the plants mechanically and then drying them to control the species. Strict measures should also be taken to control the spreading of these species. People should also be made aware of the species and should be stopped from collecting and transporting Cabomba.
Kerala Forest Research Institute (KFRI)
KFRI is a research organization based in Thrissur, Kerala. It was established in the year 1975. The institute has been doing research work related to forests in the state since its formation. KFRI also collaborated with Belgium's Ghent University in the year 2019 for studying the effects of climate change on various ecosystems, especially mangroves in the state.
Written by IAS POINT