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College of William and Mary

Publication Date

Fall 2014

Program Name

Madagascar: Biodiversity and Natural Resource Management

Abstract

Madagascar has one of the highest concentrations of palm diversity in the world, with 195 species, 192 of which are endemic, but just as for the rest of the island’s natural resources, the future of these palms is at stake. In fact, 83% of the country’s endemic palms qualify as threatened following the most recent version of IUCN Red List criteria, version 3.1, yet 28 are not even found within protected areas. One area awaiting government protection, MBG’s Pointe à Larrée project, is home to 18 different palm species, 11 of which are threatened. This study took sample counts to find the minimum population, density, and maturity of four threatened species in the area (Ravenea krociana, Dypsis carlsmithii, Dypsis psammophila, and Dypsis sanctaemariae) in order to categorize their local future survival. These species were chosen because of their rarity, novelty, human use, and role as keystone indicator species in the forest, so their population statuses can indicate the overall state of their habitat and its conservation, to be considered in future conservation decisions. Additionally, this information adds to the knowledge of their distribution, helping with future studies and IUCN classifications, and adds to the knowledge of the site as it awaits governmental protection.

Disciplines

Environmental Indicators and Impact Assessment | Natural Resources and Conservation | Natural Resources Management and Policy

 

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