Global endemics-area relationships of vascular plants

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperReviewResearchpeer-review

  • Carsten Hobohm, University of Flensburg (EUF)
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  • Monika Janišová, Slovak Academy of Sciences
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  • Manuel Steinbauer, Friedrich Alexander Univ Erlangen Nurnberg, University of Erlangen Nuremberg, Phys Inst
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  • Sara Landi, Dipartimento di Patologia e Clinica Veterinaria, Universita’ degli Studi di Sassari
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  • Richard Field, University of Nottingham
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  • Sula Vanderplank, Centro de Investigación Científica y de Educación Superior de Ensenada (CICESE)
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  • Carl Beierkuhnlein, University of Bayreuth
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  • John Arvid Grytnes, Universitetet i Bergen
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  • Ole Reidar Vetaas, Universitetet i Bergen
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  • Alessandra Fidelis, UNESP – São Paulo State University
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  • Lea de Nascimento, La Laguna University
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  • Vincent Ralph Clark, Rhodes University, University of the Free State
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  • José María Fernández-Palacios, La Laguna University
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  • Scott Franklin, University of Northern Colorado
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  • Riccardo Guarino, Universita degli Studi di Palermo
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  • Jihong Huang, Chinese Academy of Forestry
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  • Pavel Krestov, Botanical Garden-Institute FEB RAS
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  • Keping Ma, Institute of Botany, Chinese Academy of Sciences
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  • Vladimir Onipchenko, Lomonosov Moscow State University
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  • Mike W. Palmer, Oklahoma State University - Stillwater
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  • Marcelo Fragomeni Simon, Embrapa Recursos Genéticos e Biotecnologia
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  • Christian Stolz, University of Flensburg (EUF)
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  • Alessandro Chiarucci, Università di Bologna

Endemics–Area Relationships (EARs)are fundamental in theoretical and applied biogeography for understanding distribution patterns and promoting biodiversity conservation. However, calculating EARs for vascular plant species from existing data is problematic because of biased knowledge of endemic species distributions and differences between taxonomies. We aimed to overcome these challenges by developing a new standardized global dataset based on expert knowledge to produce a set of global EARs. We developed a nested circle design, with grain sizes of 10 4 , 10 5 , 10 6 , 10 7 , and 10 8 km 2 , respectively, and a global distribution of plots based on a stratified random scheme. The number of vascular plant species endemic to each circle was then estimated independently by five experts randomly chosen from a pool of 23, as both a minimum and a maximum value (lower and upper bounds of the estimation), taking into account the limitations of current knowledge and varied species concepts in existing taxonomies. This procedure resulted in a dataset of 3000 expert estimates. Based on the data, we produced three global EARs for endemic species richness using minimum, maximum and average estimates. As a validation, we used all three models to extrapolate to the entire world, producing estimates of 284,493 (minimum), 398,364 (maximum)and 312,243 (average)vascular plant species. These figures conform to the range of taxonomists’ estimates. From the models, we calculated the average area needed to harbour a single endemic species as 12,875 km 2 (range 9675–20,529). The global vascular plant EARs we calculated represent the first standardized, quantitative expectations of plant endemism at any given scale (sampling unit size). These EARs allow us to provide a clear answer to a long-standing but elusive biogeographical question: how to assess whether any area on the surface of the Earth is rich or poor in endemics relative to the average.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPerspectives in Ecology and Conservation
Volume17
Issue2
Pages (from-to)41-49
Number of pages9
ISSN2530-0644
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • Distribution of land and sea, Expert knowledge, Global reference, Minimum and maximum estimates, Zero-endemic plots

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