Aegilops geniculata 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Liliopsida Poales Poaceae

Scientific Name: Aegilops geniculata Roth
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English Ovate Goat Grass
Aegilops ovata auct.
Aegilops ovata ssp. gibberosa Zhuk.
Aegilops geniculata ssp. geniculata
Aegilops geniculata ssp. gibberosa (Zhuk.) K.Hammer
Triticum ovatum auct.
Taxonomic Notes: Aegilops geniculata Roth is a secondary wild relative of bread wheat, Triticum aestivum L. subsp. aestivum, durum wheat, T. turgidum subsp. durum (Desf.) Husn., and a number of other cultivated wheats—including emmer wheat, T. turgidum subsp. dicoccon (Schrank) Thell., einkorn wheat, T. monococcum L. subsp. monococcum, spelt, T. aestivum subsp. spelta (L.) Thell., and sanduri wheat, T. timopheevii (Zhuk.) Zhuk. subsp. timopheevii (van Slageren 1994).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2014-01-08
Assessor(s): Rhodes, L., Bradley, I. & Maxted, N.
Reviewer(s): Kell, S.P. & Fielder, H.
Contributor(s): Vörösváry, G., Uzundzhalieva, K., Duarte, M.C., Holubec, V. & Magos Brehm, J.

Aegilops geniculata is widely distributed in Europe, western and middle Asia and northern Africa. Its population is noted to be common and stable (van Slageren 1994) and there are no major threats throughout its native range. It is therefore globally assessed as Least Concern. It is thought to be well conserved ex situ and is presumed to occur in a number of protected areas. However, research is needed to confirm its in situ conservation status and subpopulations require monitoring.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Aegilops geniculata is native to middle, east, southeast and southwest Europe, western Asia, the Caucasus, northern Africa and Macaronesia (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2013). It occurs at elevations between sea level and 1,750 m asl (van Slageren 1994).
Countries occurrence:
Albania; Algeria; Armenia; Austria; Azerbaijan; Bosnia and Herzegovina; Bulgaria; Croatia; Cyprus; Egypt (Egypt (African part)); France (Corsica, France (mainland)); Georgia; Greece (East Aegean Is., Greece (mainland), Kriti); Hungary; Iran, Islamic Republic of; Iraq; Israel; Italy (Italy (mainland), Sardegna, Sicilia); Jordan; Lebanon; Libya; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malta; Montenegro; Morocco; Palestinian Territory, Occupied; Portugal (Portugal (mainland)); Romania; Serbia (Serbia); Slovenia; Spain (Baleares, Canary Is., Spain (mainland)); Switzerland; Syrian Arab Republic; Tajikistan; Tunisia; Turkey (Turkey-in-Asia, Turkey-in-Europe); Turkmenistan; Ukraine (Krym, Ukraine (main part))
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:2428
Upper elevation limit (metres):1750
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:This species is reported to be common throughout its range (van Slageren 1994).

Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:No
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:No
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This plant is found in dry, disturbed habitats such as fallow, wastelands, roadsides and dry rocky slopes of hillsides and mountainsides, as well as growing on the edge of and within olive groves, vineyards, fruit tree plantations and cereal fields (barley and wheat of which it forms natural hybrids; van Slageren 1994). The same author notes that it grows in varying soil types (clay and sandy loam, clay and gravel) and is able to grow in very stony and rocky soils and under a wide range of average annual rainfall (200–700 mm). It prefers bedrock of limestone but also shales, pillow lava, silicate, Mediterranean terra rosa, karst, basalt and sandstone (van Slageren 1994).
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:No

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species is a secondary wild relative of wheat and has been used to confer disease resistance to the crop, as well as having been identified as having potential to confer pest resistance (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2010). Specifically, it is recorded to have been used successfully to transfer Hessian fly resistance to wheat (El Khlifi et al. 2004).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no major threats to the species throughout most of its distribution. However, the European regional assessment (Duarte et al. 2013) reports that in the places where the species is adventive, strong winters can cause it to disappear. In Bulgaria the change of land use, such as the intensification of agriculture can affect the species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions:

The genus Aegilops is listed in Annex I of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) as part of the wheat gene pool.

Aegilops geniculata has been assessed as Least Concern (LC) in Bulgaria (Petrova and Vladimirov 2009), in Jordan (Taifour and El-Oqlah 2014), in Europe and EU 27 (Duarte et al. 2013).

There are 1,118 germplasm accessions of wild origin reported by Genesys of which 590 are backed up at a second genebank. Furthermore, 365 accessions are duplicated and conserved ex situ in the Svalbard Seed Vault. Out of the 1,118 accessions, 1043 were collected within the species' native range (170 from Portugal, 171 from Spain, 149 from Turkey, 95 from Greece, 78 from Syria, 51 from Morocco, 47 from France, 44 from Lebanon, 43 from Jordan, 42 from Cyprus, 36 from Algeria, 32 from Italy, 31 from Lybia, 28 from Bulgaria, eight from Tunisia, seven from the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, six from Croatia, three from Croatia and two from Ukraine). Further six accessions were collected from outside the species' known native range (Kazakhstan) and 69 are from undisclosed country of origin (Genesys Global Portal on Plant Genetic Resources 2017). According to Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI 2013), this species has living collections in 13 botanical gardens worldwide, although the origin and location of the collections are not detailed in this resource (garden locations are undisclosed to protect rare and valuable plant species).

From its known distribution, and using the GeoCAT tool (Bachman et al. 2011), it is assumed that this species occurs in several protected areas in Italy, Serbia, Romania and Bulgaria, including the Parco Del Somma-Vesuvio e Miglio D'Oro, (Italy) and the Cheile Nerei-Beuşniţa National Park and Scientific Reserve (Romania) (EEA 2013, Information Center for the Environment (ICE) 2013). However, it is unlikely that active in situ conservation measures are in place, therefore research to confirm this and promote population monitoring and management is recommended for these sites.

Citation: Rhodes, L., Bradley, I. & Maxted, N. 2017. Aegilops geniculata. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T172214A19389029. . Downloaded on 15 October 2018.
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