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Forests 2017, 8(8), 261; doi:10.3390/f8080261

Effects of Environmental Changes on the Occurrence of Oreomunnea mexicana (Juglandaceae) in a Biodiversity Hotspot Cloud Forest

Universidad de la Sierra Juárez, Avenida Universidad S/N, Ixtlán de Juárez, 68725 Oaxaca, Mexico
Instituto Tecnológico Superior de Jesús Carranza, Prolongación Miguel Hidalgo 1519, Colonia Centro, Jesús Carranza, 96950 Veracruz, Mexico
Laboratorio de Bioquímica Molecular-Unidad de Biotecnología y Prototipos (UBIPRO), FES-Iztacala, UNAM, Avenida de los Barrios 1, Los Reyes Iztacala, Tlalnepantla de Baz, 54090 Estado de México, Mexico
Laboratorio de Bioclimatología, Red de Biología Evolutiva, Instituto de Ecología A.C. (INECOL), Carretera antigua a Coatepec, 351, El Haya, Xalapa, 91070 Veracruz, Mexico
Division of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge, Cambridge CB2 1TN, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 29 June 2017 / Revised: 14 July 2017 / Accepted: 18 July 2017 / Published: 26 July 2017
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The tropical montane cloud forests are recognized as one of the most biodiverse ecosystems. In spite of this, they are among the most threatened ecosystems in the world. This study integrates three ecological approaches generally studied separately: climate change scenery, ecological niche and population dynamics of Oreomunnea mexicana (an endangered and relict species), to understand how environmental change affects the population structure in the cloud forest that will allow its conservation. Potential distribution under future climatic scenarios of the species at national and regional levels was generated from the Maxent algorithm. Also, the current abundance, distribution and the ecological niche of the species were analyzed at the regional level. Changes in potential distribution under two climatic models suggest a habitat reduction from 36% to 55% nationally, and 2% to 9% at a regional level, for 2050 and 2070, respectively. The current distribution of the species is fragmented and consists of subpopulations that have spatial structures of aggregated populations and a size structure in reversed “J” form. The ecological niche of the species is highly specialized and sensitive to environmental changes. O. mexicana is a flagship species of biological and cultural importance to the region’s inhabitants and could be fundamental to the conservation of tropical montane cloud forests. View Full-Text
Keywords: climate change; ecological niche; distribution; population structure climate change; ecological niche; distribution; population structure

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Alfonso-Corrado, C.; Naranjo-Luna, F.; Clark-Tapia, R.; Campos, J.E.; Rojas-Soto, O.R.; Luna-Krauletz, M.D.; Bodenhorn, B.; Gorgonio-Ramírez, M.; Pacheco-Cruz, N. Effects of Environmental Changes on the Occurrence of Oreomunnea mexicana (Juglandaceae) in a Biodiversity Hotspot Cloud Forest. Forests 2017, 8, 261.

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