The relationships between invasive plant species and environmental and anthropogenic factors were analyzed in five nature reserves in northern China. The distribution of invasive plants was analyzed using a Canonical Correspondence Analysis. Stepwise backward multiple regression was then done to identify the most important environmental and anthropogenic factors determining the richness and distribution of alien plants in the reserves. Total invasive plant richness varied was 25 species, 12 species, 13 species, five species and five species across the nature reserves. Invasive species richness decreased in response to environmental factors such as maximum temperature and minimum precipitation and increased in line with human activities, the total area of farmland and volume of freight. Tropical plant species declined from 31% to zero while the species originally from North America gradually increased. In respect of family composition of invasive species, most species belonged to the composites, whose proportion increased from 15%–40% from north to south across the five nature reserves while species from other families varied greatly along this gradient. Life-forms of invasive plant species varied between the reserves, but annual and perennial herbs were generally dominant. Pathways of such species were highly related to human activities and utilizations.
canonical correspondence analysis (CCA)