J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 1999, Vol. 41 ›› Issue (9): -.

• Research Articles •    

Characteristics and Conservation Priority of Rare and Endangered Plants in the Yangtse River Valley

XIE Zong-Qiang and CHEN Wei-Lie   

Abstract: 127 rare and endangered species listed in 《China Plant Red Data Book》 were found in Yangtse River valley. 1/3 of them belonged to 4 families with high economic values such as Pinaceae, Magnoliaceae, Lauraceae and Ranuculanceae. Of all the plants, 66.93 % existed in forests and 71.65 % were threatened with damage of habitats. The rare and endangered plants in the studied region formed a geographical pattern with 2 distribution areas and 6 small distribution centers. The 2 areas were in the high mountains in western Sichuan and northern Yunnan or around the Sichuan Basin. The 6 centers included the fragmented montane forests in the eastern part of the valley. These showed that human activities were the main factor threatening the survival of plants, and preserving forests were the effective approach to save the rare and endangered plants in the valley. Takings≤ 10 as the number of population in a unit of area for categorizing the endangered plants is basically in accord with the criterion defined in the 《China Plant Red Data Book》. Thus the rare and endangered plants in the valley could be divided into 5 ranks for priority conservation. The plants in the first rank composed cf 8 endemic species natively grown the valley with only one population for which effective measures should be taken for active preservation.

Key words: The Yangtse River, Rare and endangered plants, Priority for conservation

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