Morphological and Molecular Phylogenetic Analyses Reveal a New Record to the Flora of Iraq: Azolla filiculoides
Azolla filiculoides is an aquatic fern native to Americas. The species has dispersed through Europe and Asia. Recently, it has been identified in northern part of Iran. However, there is no evidence confirms the presence of Azolla sp. in Kurdistan region of Iraq. The aim of the present study was to identify the species of Azolla found in Tanjaro river/northern part of Iraq. We studied morphological characteristics including trichomes, leaf branches, and three phylogenetic positions such as rbcl, rps4 and trnG-trnR of the species. The morphological and phylogeny investigations were compared with other identified species (reference species). Our results showed that the morphological characteristics are more similar to Azolla filicluloides than other species. Based on the phylogenetic trees, the position of the observed species was closer to Azolla filiculoides than others. These results indicated that the Azolla species found in Tanjaro river is more likely c.
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