Hernandez, Hector M.; Godinez A., Hector
April 1994
Acta Botanica Mexicana;1994, Issue 26, p33
Academic Journal
Mexico is the most important center of concentration of genera and species of cacti, most of which are endemic (73 and 78% respectively). Most of the species occur in the arid or semiarid regions of the country, especially in the southeastern portion of the Chihuahuan Desert, including the Queretaro-Hidalgo Arid Zone. Many of the species are under collecting pressures and their habitats are being destroyed. In addition, these have a limited ability to reestablish demographically after a disturbance event. Consequently, a significant number of mexican cacti are listed as endangered. Based on recently published listings, and utilizing a rather lax concept to define a species as endangered, an updated list of endangered species from Mexico is presented here. The list includes 197 species, plus infraspecific categories, which represent 35% of the species in the country. General information about their geographical distribution, as well as data on the number of known, yet documented, localities is provided for each one of them. Most taxa in the list came out to be restricted endemics, with limited distributions. Departing from the postulate that geographically restricted species are potentially or actually more endangered than widespread ones, it is concluded that the endangered species of cacti constitute a plant group in need of urgent conservation actions.


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