Montane and cloud forest specialists among neotropical Xylaria species

D. Jean Lodge, Thomas Læssøe, M. Catherine Aime, Terry W. Henkel

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We compared records of neotropical Xylaria species among Belize, Ecuador, the Guianas, Mexico, Puerto Rico and Venezuela to determine if there were neotropical taxa consistently found only in cloud forest or high montane forests that might be endangered by climate change. Historical reports were combined with new records from Belize and Guyana. A few collections from the Cerro de la Neblina expeditions in Venezuela were redetermined. Foliicolous (5) and fruit inhabiting (3) species, and species restricted to one country (14) were overrepresented among the 16 species found only in cloud forest as compared to other habitats. The data indicate that several species appear to be specialists of cloud or high montane forests that may be adversely affected by climate change. These include two neotropical cloud forest specialists restricted to that habitat in more than one country ( X. cordovensis,and X. magnoliae ), three species reported only from cloud forest and high montane forests (X. corniculata ined., X. pasochoae ined. and X. phosporea ), and another 21 species reported from a single country that probably include additional cloud forest or high montane specialists. An additional four widely distributed Xylaria taxa occurred primarily in cloud forests and might also be affected by climate change.


Xylaria; cloud forest; montane forest; neotropics; conservation; climate change; fungal ecology; biogeography; meta-analysis; Belize; Ecuador; Guianas; Mexico; Puerto Rico; Venezuela



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