Assess the Effects of Climate and Land-Use Change on Plant Species Distribution

A special issue of Land (ISSN 2073-445X). This special issue belongs to the section "Landscape Ecology".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 June 2024) | Viewed by 5619

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Department of Ecology and Systematics, Faculty of Biology, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, 15701 Athens, Greece
Interests: biogeography; biodiversity; biodiversity and climate change; conservation; conservation biogeography; conservation biology; island biodiversity; island biogeography; plant diversity; plant systematics; species distribution modelling
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
Laboratory of Botany, Department of Biology, University of Patras, GR-26504 Patras, Greece
Interests: conservation ecology; biodiversity; biomonitoring; inventory and mapping of flora and habitat types/vegetation types; mapping and assessment of ecosystems and ecosystem services; GIS and remote sensing; environmental management; sustainable development; environmental policy
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Plant diversity is unevenly spatially distributed due to eco-evolutionary processes. We live in an era where human-induced land use and climate change are threating biodiversity at unprecedented rates. Consequently, biodiversity loss and extinction rates have exceeded historically high levels, a phenomenon observed all over the globe and at all spatial scales since the Industrial Revolution, mainly due to habitat loss and degradation. This trend is bound to continue in the coming decades. This will lead to increasing biotic homogenization, as well as altering biodiversity patterns and biotic interactions. The Mediterranean, apart from being the second largest global biodiversity hotspot, is also a global biodiversity hotspot of vulnerable taxa and is among the regions where the effects of climate and land-use change on plant diversity are expected to be the largest. There is thus an urgent need to assess current biodiversity patterns, conservation actions, practices, and management plans, as well as for studies conducted on potentially threatened or socioeconomically important taxa. This Special Issue aims to encourage ongoing plant diversity and conservation research in the Mediterranean at any level (from molecular to ecosystem), as well as in any other global biodiversity hotspot.

Dr. Kostas Kougioumoutzis
Dr. Ioannis P. Kokkoris
Dr. Maria Panitsa
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Anthropocene
  • biodiversity conservation
  • biodiversity patterns
  • conservation biogeography
  • conservation biology
  • conservation genetics
  • climate change
  • conservation prioritization
  • cultural ecology
  • ecosystems services
  • ethnobotany
  • environmental management
  • ex situ conservation
  • extinction risk
  • in situ conservation
  • genetic, taxonomic, phylogenetic and functional diversity
  • management
  • land-use change
  • plant-pollinator networks
  • plant conservation
  • phylogeography
  • physiology
  • policymaking
  • policy evaluation
  • population genetics
  • species distribution modelling
  • sustainable development
  • taxonomy

Published Papers (2 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 19782 KiB  
Article
Conservation Responsibility for Priority Habitats under Future Climate Conditions: A Case Study on Juniperus drupacea Forests in Greece
by Ioannis P. Kokkoris, Konstantinos Kougioumoutzis, Ioannis Charalampopoulos, Ektor Apostolidis, Ilias Apostolidis, Arne Strid and Panayotis Dimopoulos
Land 2023, 12(11), 1976; https://doi.org/10.3390/land12111976 - 26 Oct 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1562
Abstract
Juniperus drupacea is a highly morphologically and genetically differentiated Tertiary relict, displaying a disjunct geographical range in the eastern Mediterranean. Being a thermophilous, light-demanding, and moderately drought-resistant tree, it survived the past climatic oscillations via altitudinal migration. The species has its westernmost range [...] Read more.
Juniperus drupacea is a highly morphologically and genetically differentiated Tertiary relict, displaying a disjunct geographical range in the eastern Mediterranean. Being a thermophilous, light-demanding, and moderately drought-resistant tree, it survived the past climatic oscillations via altitudinal migration. The species has its westernmost range limit, and its only populations in the EU, in Mts Parnon and Taygetos (Greece). These populations are genetically isolated and distinct compared to their Asian counterparts. For Europe, Juniperus drupacea is categorized as an endangered species by the IUCN. Juniperus drupacea forests constitute a priority habitat for conservation in the EU. However, the species’ conservation status has never been assessed in Greece and the same applies to its climate and land-use change assessment. As Greece is already facing the short-term impacts of climate- and human-induced land-use change, studies dealing with the potential long-term climate- and land-use change effects on rare plant species distribution are urgently needed to implement efficient conservation management plans. Our research employs species distribution models, considering multiple climate scenarios and abiotic factors across different timeframes (2020s, 2050s, 2080s), factoring in the potential threat of forest fires. Additionally, we assess the species’ extinction risk at the European level, according to IUCN Criteria A and B. Study findings indicate significant habitat changes and an elevated extinction risk for Juniperus drupacea in Greece. To safeguard this priority habitat, informed conservation strategies, management plans, and policy making are recommended, based on our scientific insights. Full article
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44 pages, 4237 KiB  
Article
Alnus glutinosa Riparian Woodlands of Italy and Corsica: Phytosociological Classification and Floristic Diversity
by Saverio Sciandrello, Claudia Angiolini, Gianluigi Bacchetta, Maurizio Cutini, Jeremy Dumoulin, Mauro Fois, Antonio Gabellini, Matilde Gennai, Lorenzo Gianguzzi, Marco Landi, Pietro Minissale, Christophe Panaïotis, Marta Puglisi, Giovanni Spampinato, Gianmarco Tavilla, Valeria Tomaselli, Daniele Viciani and Gianpietro Giusso del Galdo
Land 2023, 12(1), 88; https://doi.org/10.3390/land12010088 - 28 Dec 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 3111
Abstract
A comparative analysis of the riparian vegetation dominated by Alnus glutinosa in Italy and Tyrrhenian islands, based on literature data and unpublished relevés, is presented. A total of 456 phytosociological relevés were processed. For the definition of plant communities and alliances, hierarchical clustering [...] Read more.
A comparative analysis of the riparian vegetation dominated by Alnus glutinosa in Italy and Tyrrhenian islands, based on literature data and unpublished relevés, is presented. A total of 456 phytosociological relevés were processed. For the definition of plant communities and alliances, hierarchical clustering was performed by using Bray-Curtis coefficient and Detrended Correspondence Analysis ordination methods. Identification of diagnostic species of the vegetation units was performed by means of the phi fidelity index. Quantum GIS software version 3.6 was used for the interpolation of the bioclimatic variables and A. glutinosa communities. Overall, a total of 18 A. glutinosa-riparian wood communities were distinguished for Italy and Tyrrhenian islands, of which two new associations and one new subassassociation are described. The classification of the relevés showed two main vegetation groups: the first one including the plant communities of the Osmundo-Alnion alliance, and the other including the vegetation of the Ligustro vulgaris-Alnion glutinosae alliance. This latest includes the riparian meso-thermophilous communities of central and northern Italy. Within the Osmundo-Alnion alliance, two subgroups can be recognized: the first one includes the thermophilous communities of the Hyperico hircini-Alnenion glutinosae sub-alliance, mainly spread in the Tyrrhenian islands, while the second group includes the mesophilous communities attributed to the new suballiance Struthioptero-Alnenion glutinosae, widespread in central Italy and the Corsican mountains. The present paper provides the first comprehensive and exhaustive scheme of the A. glutinosa riparian woodlands diversity in Italy and Corsica. Full article
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