Persea indica 

Scope: Global & Europe
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Laurales Lauraceae

Scientific Name: Persea indica (L.) Spreng.
Common Name(s):
Spanish Viñatigo
Borbonia indica J.Presl
Laurus indica L.
Taxonomic Source(s): The International Plant Names Index. 2012. IPNI. Available at: (Accessed: 17 June).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2017
Date Assessed: 2016-10-14
Assessor(s): Fernandes, F. & da Silva Menezes de Sequeira, M.
Reviewer(s): Scholz, S., Reyes Betancort, J.A. & Allen, D.J.
This species is endemic to Madeira and the Canary Islands, with historical introduction the Azores. This species is here assessed as Least Concern as it has a large extent of occurrence and populations of this species are relatively large and considered stable. The species is currently threatened by changes in water availability and fires caused by invasive species. The species is found within protected areas and in ex situ collections. On the Canaries the species is generally much more scattered and is less common, but most remaining populations are within protected areas.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is considered to be a native endemic of Madeira and the Canary Islands (Tutin et al. 1995, Gobierno de Canarias 2017). The species was introduced to the Azores three centuries ago. The species is found between 400 and 1,300 m above sea level. The estimated extent of occurrence is 81,400 km2.
Countries occurrence:
Portugal (Azores - Introduced, Madeira); Spain (Canary Is.)
Additional data:
Continuing decline in extent of occurrence (EOO):No
Lower elevation limit (metres):400
Upper elevation limit (metres):1300
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Although the extent of the stands is much reduced as a result of past exploitation of the highly valued wood, the species is still abundant in parts of Madeira and the Canaries. In Madeira, the population is thought to be around 5,000 but definitely fewer than 10,000 individuals. The population of this species is stable, although recent fires have affected southern subpopulations on Madeira and in the Canaries (La Gomera).
Current Population Trend:Stable
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:The species grows as a large tree up to 25-30 m tall. It is characteristic of the mature laurisilva riparian and humid slopes vegetation above 400 m.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:No

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: The species has highly valued timber and used to be harvested to make furniture. The bark was used to treat animal furs. It was used to make dye and was used for fuel and handicrafts. This species is in the same genus as the avocado and can be used as rootstock for the avocado.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The species is recently expanding into abandoned agricultural lands, however in the future, agricultural lands might be reclaimed and the population numbers may be affected. The increase in invasive species negatively affects the population because of competition and increased fire risk. Both ground water and surface water is being diverted away from the riparian habitats for other uses which could negatively affect this species in the future. Introduced rats eat the shoots of this plant but consumption makes the rats ill.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The species was considered Least Concern/conservation dependent by Oldfield et al. in 1998. It is included in the Natural Park of Madeira, Natura 2000 and partially in the World Heritage Site. On the Canaries, the species occurs within numerous protected areas. The species is found in 47 ex situ collections (BGCI 2016).

Citation: Fernandes, F. & da Silva Menezes de Sequeira, M. 2017. Persea indica. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2017: e.T30329A102153566. . Downloaded on 20 September 2018.
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