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Distribution, ecology and conservation status of Dionysia involucrata Zaprjag., an endangered endemic of Hissar Mts (Tajikistan, Middle Asia)

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Dionysia involucrata Zaprjag. (Primulaceae) is known as critically endangered endemic species of Hissar Mountains in Tajikistan. It is reported from few localities mainly in Varzob River valley and its tributaries. The species inhabits steep or overhanging faces of granite rocks in narrow river gorges. During the research all known populations of D. involucrata were examined in respect of the habitat conditions and species composition of vegetation plots. We analyzed the population extent of the species in its range in Tajikistan and the main threats in order to assess its conservation status. The detrended correspondence analysis was performed on a matrix of 65 relevés and 49 species (vascular plants and mosses), to classify the phytocoenosis with domination of D. involucrata according to their floristic composition in relation to other petrophytic vegetation units. Using our field data regarding present extent of occurrence and area of occupancy we conclude that the threat category of D. involucrata should be reassessed from critically endangered to endangered. The species shows decline tendency in extent of occurrence, area of occupancy as well as in number of locations. The vegetation plots with domination of D. involucrata have relatively high level of separateness due to different species composition. We define the new association – Dionysietum involucratae – representing chasmophytic vegetation of submontane and montane zone in Middle Asia (ca. 1000–1600 m a.s.l.). The plots of Dionysietum involucratae were found mainly on granite rocks, on very steep or overhanging faces, on southwestern or southern exposition. The association is rather poor in species with inconsiderable contribution of mosses. Despite the diagnostic species, Campanula incanescens, Carex koshewnikowii and Scutellaria hissarica were the most abundant and frequent taxa within the researched patches of vegetation.
Opis fizyczny
  • Department of Biosystematics, Opole University, Oleska 22, 45-052 Opole, Poland
  • Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University, Kopernika 27, 31-501 Krakow, Poland
  • Laboratory of Biodiversity and Ecology, Tomsk State University, Lenin Prospekt 36, Tomsk, 634050, Russian Federation
  • Department of Biosystematics, Opole University, Oleska 22, 45-052 Opole, Poland
  • Institute of Botany, Jagiellonian University, Kopernika 27, 31-501 Krakow, Poland
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