Dirachma socotrana 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Magnoliopsida Rosales Dirachmaceae

Scientific Name: Dirachma socotrana Schweinf.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable B2ab(iii) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2004
Date Assessed: 2004-04-30
Needs updating
Assessor(s): Miller, A.
Reviewer(s): Abuzinada, A.H. & AL-Eisawi, D.M.H. (Arabian Plants Red List Authority)
The Red Data Book (1977) considered D. socotrana to be Endangered. However, recent fieldwork has shown it to be fairly common in at least one location. Three subpopulations are now known with an area of occupancy of around 50 km². In the principal locations (in the western and central Haggeher mountains) trees are relatively abundant and actively regenerating. However, at the other localities the tree is rare and possibility declining. The foliage of this species is not browsed by livestock, though goats have been known to gnaw the bark in periods of drought. The wood of the dead tree is collected for the aromatic smoke it produces when burned. Although small quantities are offered for sale (as are the dead woods of other species on the island which produce aromatic smoke) this is not considered to present a problem at present. However, should the demand for this scented wood increase it is possible that live trees might be cut for sale and this would, of course, seriously threaten the survival of the tree.
Previously published Red List assessments:

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Endemic to Soqotra.
Countries occurrence:
Yemen (Socotra)
Additional data:
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Current Population Trend:Unknown
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:A small tree or shrub which is restricted to a few valleys in the Eastern Haggier Mountains and adjacent limestone hills. Locally common in dense semi-deciduous woodland. Altitude of 280–1,000 m.

The total population was formerly thought to consist of no more than 30 individuals. Although severely geographically restricted, the species actually occurs commonly in places and appears to be regenerating healthily. The only other member of the genus is in Somalia.

In the past this tree has been considered rare, even on the point of extinction. This is almost certainly because most expeditions have visited the island in January to February when the tree is not in flower; it is then rather nondescript and easily overlooked. However, it becomes far more conspicuous in summer (March to April) when it is covered in white flowers. It is particularly abundant in the dense woodland in the upper reaches of Wadi Ayheft. It is also less common in other areas, for instance on the higher seaward-facing cliffs at Reqadrihon (above Hoq). These cliffs capture low cloud and drizzle during the winter and are a refugium for some species (e.g., Coelocarpum haggierensis) which are otherwise found only in areas of high rainfall in the Haggehr mountains.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no immediate threats to populations.

Citation: Miller, A. 2004. Dirachma socotrana. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2004: e.T30381A9543198. . Downloaded on 18 September 2018.
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