Life history and demographic features of Astragalus nitidiflorus, a critically endangered species

Journal ar
Flora: Morphology, Distribution, Functional Ecology of Plants
  • Volumen: 206
  • Número: 5
  • Fecha: 01 mayo 2011
  • Páginas: 423-432
  • ISSN: 03672530
  • Tipo de fuente: Revista
  • DOI: 10.1016/j.flora.2010.11.006
  • Tipo de documento: Artículo
Astragalus nitidiflorus is an endangered perennial, but short-lived legume of SE Spain, which has been re-found after 100 years. To identify possible weak points that might contribute to its rarity and hamper its conservation, this paper presents data concerning location, habitat, demographic features and reproductive biology of the species. Censuses of three cohorts of seedlings show that the seedling stage is the most critical in the life cycle. The adult plants show a long flowering season with a high degree of synchrony. Despite the low reproductive success of the species, the annual seed production is very high due to the high floral production. The data show that A. nitidiflorus is a facultative xenogamous species, but the presence of pollinators can enhance fruit set. The viability of the species is not limited by the flowering and fruiting process, however the maintenance of the habitat in the early successional stages seems to be the critical point for long-term survival of the species. © 2010 Elsevier GmbH.

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