Protecting a single endangered species and meeting multiple conservation goals: An approach with Guaiacum sanctum in Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Leonel Lopez-Toledo*, Guillermo Ibarra-Manríquez, David F.R.P. Burslem, Esteban Martínez-Salas, Fernando Pineda-García, Miguel Martínez-Ramos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Aim New protected areas should consider safeguarding high conservation value sites based on multiple criteria and not just the presence of a single endangered or charismatic species. However, the extent to which complementary criteria coincide is usually unknown. We use the case of Guaiacum sanctum (Zygopyllaceae), an endangered timber tree species, to explore whether the protection of forests where this species is most abundant would meet other complementary conservation goals, such as capturing regional plant biodiversity, protecting other threatened/endemic species or safeguarding ecosystem services. Location Yucatan Peninsula, southern Mexico. Methods We conducted an analysis of the structure, composition and diversity of tree communities (including stems ≥5cmdbh) at eight G. sanctum forest sites. We identified endemic and threatened tree species and quantified above-ground tree biomass and carbon storage in these G. sanctum forests. Results Guaiacum sanctum forests contain 35-59 tree species on plots as small as 1000m 2. The species composition of tree communities changed rapidly (high β-diversity) across soil boundaries and rainfall regimes. Twenty-one endemic and eight threatened tree species were recorded in our inventories. Individuals of G. sanctum represented up to 55% of the above-ground carbon for trees ≥5cmdbh. The high basal area of G. sanctum forests plus the high wood density, abundance, large size and longevity (more than 500years) of G. sanctum and other tree species enhance the potential importance of these forests for carbon storage. Main conclusions A conservation strategy focused on protecting important populations of G. sanctum in the Yucatan Peninsula would have significant co-benefits for conservation of regional tree species biodiversity and provision of critical ecosystem services. Our study illustrates a multiple criteria approach useful for the selection of areas with high conservation value on the basis of endemic, threatened species, species richness and ecosystem services.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)575-587
Number of pages13
JournalDiversity and Distributions
Volume18
Issue number6
Early online date9 Dec 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2012

Fingerprint

Guaiacum sanctum
endangered species
Mexico
ecosystem services
ecosystem service
carbon sequestration
endemic species
biodiversity
species diversity
wood density
threatened species
forest trees
basal area
conservation areas

Keywords

  • Carbon storage
  • Ecosystem services
  • Plant species diversity
  • Protected areas
  • Seasonally tropical dry forest
  • Threatened and endemic species

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics

Cite this

Protecting a single endangered species and meeting multiple conservation goals : An approach with Guaiacum sanctum in Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. / Lopez-Toledo, Leonel; Ibarra-Manríquez, Guillermo; Burslem, David F.R.P.; Martínez-Salas, Esteban; Pineda-García, Fernando; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel.

In: Diversity and Distributions, Vol. 18, No. 6, 06.2012, p. 575-587.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Lopez-Toledo, Leonel ; Ibarra-Manríquez, Guillermo ; Burslem, David F.R.P. ; Martínez-Salas, Esteban ; Pineda-García, Fernando ; Martínez-Ramos, Miguel. / Protecting a single endangered species and meeting multiple conservation goals : An approach with Guaiacum sanctum in Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. In: Diversity and Distributions. 2012 ; Vol. 18, No. 6. pp. 575-587.
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abstract = "Aim New protected areas should consider safeguarding high conservation value sites based on multiple criteria and not just the presence of a single endangered or charismatic species. However, the extent to which complementary criteria coincide is usually unknown. We use the case of Guaiacum sanctum (Zygopyllaceae), an endangered timber tree species, to explore whether the protection of forests where this species is most abundant would meet other complementary conservation goals, such as capturing regional plant biodiversity, protecting other threatened/endemic species or safeguarding ecosystem services. Location Yucatan Peninsula, southern Mexico. Methods We conducted an analysis of the structure, composition and diversity of tree communities (including stems ≥5cmdbh) at eight G. sanctum forest sites. We identified endemic and threatened tree species and quantified above-ground tree biomass and carbon storage in these G. sanctum forests. Results Guaiacum sanctum forests contain 35-59 tree species on plots as small as 1000m 2. The species composition of tree communities changed rapidly (high β-diversity) across soil boundaries and rainfall regimes. Twenty-one endemic and eight threatened tree species were recorded in our inventories. Individuals of G. sanctum represented up to 55{\%} of the above-ground carbon for trees ≥5cmdbh. The high basal area of G. sanctum forests plus the high wood density, abundance, large size and longevity (more than 500years) of G. sanctum and other tree species enhance the potential importance of these forests for carbon storage. Main conclusions A conservation strategy focused on protecting important populations of G. sanctum in the Yucatan Peninsula would have significant co-benefits for conservation of regional tree species biodiversity and provision of critical ecosystem services. Our study illustrates a multiple criteria approach useful for the selection of areas with high conservation value on the basis of endemic, threatened species, species richness and ecosystem services.",
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note = "Acknowledgements We acknowledge the financial support of CONABIO (BS-004),FOMIX-Campeche (31473) and CITES. CIECO-UNAM, the University of Aberdeen and Transforesta/Mario Salmon provided additional funding. LLT was supported by scholarships from CONACYT-Mexico (No. 163218), European Union (E04D031465MX), and an Overseas Research Award-United Kingdom. Joaquin Vaca helped in fieldwork",
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T2 - An approach with Guaiacum sanctum in Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

AU - Lopez-Toledo, Leonel

AU - Ibarra-Manríquez, Guillermo

AU - Burslem, David F.R.P.

AU - Martínez-Salas, Esteban

AU - Pineda-García, Fernando

AU - Martínez-Ramos, Miguel

N1 - Acknowledgements We acknowledge the financial support of CONABIO (BS-004),FOMIX-Campeche (31473) and CITES. CIECO-UNAM, the University of Aberdeen and Transforesta/Mario Salmon provided additional funding. LLT was supported by scholarships from CONACYT-Mexico (No. 163218), European Union (E04D031465MX), and an Overseas Research Award-United Kingdom. Joaquin Vaca helped in fieldwork

PY - 2012/6

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N2 - Aim New protected areas should consider safeguarding high conservation value sites based on multiple criteria and not just the presence of a single endangered or charismatic species. However, the extent to which complementary criteria coincide is usually unknown. We use the case of Guaiacum sanctum (Zygopyllaceae), an endangered timber tree species, to explore whether the protection of forests where this species is most abundant would meet other complementary conservation goals, such as capturing regional plant biodiversity, protecting other threatened/endemic species or safeguarding ecosystem services. Location Yucatan Peninsula, southern Mexico. Methods We conducted an analysis of the structure, composition and diversity of tree communities (including stems ≥5cmdbh) at eight G. sanctum forest sites. We identified endemic and threatened tree species and quantified above-ground tree biomass and carbon storage in these G. sanctum forests. Results Guaiacum sanctum forests contain 35-59 tree species on plots as small as 1000m 2. The species composition of tree communities changed rapidly (high β-diversity) across soil boundaries and rainfall regimes. Twenty-one endemic and eight threatened tree species were recorded in our inventories. Individuals of G. sanctum represented up to 55% of the above-ground carbon for trees ≥5cmdbh. The high basal area of G. sanctum forests plus the high wood density, abundance, large size and longevity (more than 500years) of G. sanctum and other tree species enhance the potential importance of these forests for carbon storage. Main conclusions A conservation strategy focused on protecting important populations of G. sanctum in the Yucatan Peninsula would have significant co-benefits for conservation of regional tree species biodiversity and provision of critical ecosystem services. Our study illustrates a multiple criteria approach useful for the selection of areas with high conservation value on the basis of endemic, threatened species, species richness and ecosystem services.

AB - Aim New protected areas should consider safeguarding high conservation value sites based on multiple criteria and not just the presence of a single endangered or charismatic species. However, the extent to which complementary criteria coincide is usually unknown. We use the case of Guaiacum sanctum (Zygopyllaceae), an endangered timber tree species, to explore whether the protection of forests where this species is most abundant would meet other complementary conservation goals, such as capturing regional plant biodiversity, protecting other threatened/endemic species or safeguarding ecosystem services. Location Yucatan Peninsula, southern Mexico. Methods We conducted an analysis of the structure, composition and diversity of tree communities (including stems ≥5cmdbh) at eight G. sanctum forest sites. We identified endemic and threatened tree species and quantified above-ground tree biomass and carbon storage in these G. sanctum forests. Results Guaiacum sanctum forests contain 35-59 tree species on plots as small as 1000m 2. The species composition of tree communities changed rapidly (high β-diversity) across soil boundaries and rainfall regimes. Twenty-one endemic and eight threatened tree species were recorded in our inventories. Individuals of G. sanctum represented up to 55% of the above-ground carbon for trees ≥5cmdbh. The high basal area of G. sanctum forests plus the high wood density, abundance, large size and longevity (more than 500years) of G. sanctum and other tree species enhance the potential importance of these forests for carbon storage. Main conclusions A conservation strategy focused on protecting important populations of G. sanctum in the Yucatan Peninsula would have significant co-benefits for conservation of regional tree species biodiversity and provision of critical ecosystem services. Our study illustrates a multiple criteria approach useful for the selection of areas with high conservation value on the basis of endemic, threatened species, species richness and ecosystem services.

KW - Carbon storage

KW - Ecosystem services

KW - Plant species diversity

KW - Protected areas

KW - Seasonally tropical dry forest

KW - Threatened and endemic species

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