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Athrotaxis selaginoides

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
PLANTAE TRACHEOPHYTA PINOPSIDA PINALES CUPRESSACEAE

Scientific Name: Athrotaxis selaginoides
Species Authority: D.Don
Common Name(s):
English King William Pine, King Billy Pine
Taxonomic Notes: This genus was formerly included under the family Taxodiaceae. That family is now merged with Cupressaceae (see Farjon 2005).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Vulnerable A2cd; B1ab(ii,iii,v)+2ab(ii,iii,v) ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2012-06-07
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P. & Gardner, M.
Justification:
The extent of occurrence (EOO) and area of occupancy (AOO) for Athrotaxis selaginoides are within the thresholds for Vulnerable (VU) even considering uncertainties in the estimation of AOO based on herbarium collection data. Localities mapped by Brown and Hill (in Farjon and Page 1999) in southwestern Tasmania are not represented by herbarium specimens. Allowing for these and other omissions, the AOO in particular would still be substantially less than 2,000 km². The population is severely fragmented and it is estimated that there has been a population reduction of at least 40% over the last 200 years (three generations would be about 300 years), primarily due to fires. While decline has slowed, it has not ceased. This species therefore qualifies for a Vulnerable listing under criteria A2, B1 and B2.
History:
1998 Vulnerable
1997 Rare (Walter and Gillett 1998)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Endemic to Tasmania (Australia) where it is widely distributed in the highlands of the western and southwestern parts of the island.
Countries:
Native:
Australia (Tasmania)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Population reduction has slowed compared to estimated rates in the past 100 years, but it has not ceased as fires are still destroying trees. Regeneration is very slow.
Population Trend: Decreasing

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: A large tree commonly found in the transition zone to (above) montane Eucalyptus woodland; at higher altitudes it is less frequent, and ocurs on lake shores or alongside streams in sheltered places. The altitudinal range is mostly  between 730 and1,200 m a.s.l. but occasionally occurs down to 400 m. Grows in acidic, rocky (talus) or peaty soils which are usually wet.
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: King William Pine provides some excellent wood for special uses like wood carving and turning. However, virtually all trees, including dead wood, are now within protected areas and removal is prohibited. In horticulture it is present only in arboreta and other botanical collections.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The main cause of past decline has been fire, with about one third of its habitat burnt in the twentieth century. Like the other two Athrotaxis species, A. selaginoides is sensitive to fire. Another cause of past decline has been logging. The overall decline is estimated to be about 40% over the last 200 years. This is within the three generation time limit where one generation is estimated to be at least 100 years. Although 84% of forests are now in protected areas, fires still are a potential hazard. Tasmanian Government policy precludes logging of this species in and outside these protected areas.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Almost 84% of the entire population is contained within protected areas.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Athrotaxis selaginoides. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 23 October 2014.
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