Thousands of botanists from the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland (BSBI)1 have spent the last twenty years collecting data on changes in the British and Irish floras. The results have now been published in Plant Atlas 2020. Three main trends emerged from the Irish data.
● Most Irish native plant species (56%) have declined in range and abundance or both.
● Native grassland plants are those that have suffered the most, but many plants of lakes and wetlands have also declined.
● In contrast, the overwhelming majority (80%) of species introduced into Ireland since 1500 have increased. Most of these non-native species are benign but some, such as Himalayan Balsam and Rhododendron, , have become invasive, with a negative impact on the native flora.
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