Abstract Detail

Conservation Biology

Naranjo, Andre [1], Melton, Anthony [2], Soltis, Douglas [3], Soltis, Pamela [4].

Endemism and Future Climate Change in the Scrub Mint Clade (Lamiaceae): Identifying Areas and Species of Critical Concern.

Recent studies have uncovered that narrow endemics are experiencing range contractions due to human development and anthropogenically induced global warming. The Scrub Mint clade (Lamiaceae), or SMC, provides a unique system for investigating the effects of climate change on vascular plant ranges in the North American Coastal Plain. The clade comprises Dicerandra, Conradina, Piloblephis, Stachydeoma, and 4 species of Clinopodium (Mentheae; Lamiaceae), almost all of which are endemic to the North American Coastal Plain. Most species of this clade are threatened or endangered and restricted to sand hill vegetation and a mosaic of scrub habitats; some species are restricted to just one or two sites in peninsular Florida and Georgia. We evaluate patterns of endemism to uncover land areas critical to conservation, while also modeling the change in distribution of a group of scrub-adapted plant species with similar evolutionary histories in response to warming climates. We selected all 24 species of the SMC, representing the scrub and sandhill biomes of the North American Coastal Plain. For this analysis, 448 geo-referenced datapoints from iDigBio and other sources were used in conjunction with our phylogeny of the SMC to determine hotspots of paleo- and neo-endemism across the scrub mint range. We then used our datapoints for building ecological niche models to assess both present fundamental niches and predicted future ranges under climate change scenarios. Comparisons were made across the Coastal Plain between all members of the SMC including species defined as narrow endemics. Under future climate change models, 63% of the Scrub Mint species would occupy significantly smaller geographical areas than at present. Our results confirm that narrowly endemic species are more susceptible to habitat loss than those species with wider ranges.

1 - University of Florida, Florida Museum Of Natural History
2 - University Of Florida, Biology Dept, 4410 NW 31st Terr, Gainesville, FL, 32605, United States
3 - University Of Florida, Florida Museum Of Natural History, Dickinson Hall, Gainesville, FL, 32611, United States
4 - University Of Florida, Florida Museum Of Natural History, Po Box 117800, Gainesville, FL, 32611, United States

climate change
ecological niche modelling
scrub mints
North American Coastal Plain.

Presentation Type: Oral Paper
Session: CB3, Conservation Biology 3
Location: Virtual/Virtual
Date: Friday, July 31st, 2020
Time: 1:15 PM
Number: CB3004
Abstract ID:220
Candidate for Awards:None

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