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Larix sibirica

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
PLANTAE TRACHEOPHYTA PINOPSIDA PINALES PINACEAE

Scientific Name: Larix sibirica
Species Authority: Ledeb.
Common Name(s):
English Siberian Larch

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-01-27
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P.
Justification:
This species is too widespread and abundant to qualify for any threatened category and is therefore assessed as Least Concern.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Recorded from Russia: from the White Sea to Lake Baikal in Siberia; China: Xinjiang (Altai Mts., E Tien Shan); and Mongolia (Altai Mts.).
Countries:
Native:
China (Tibet [or Xizang], Xinjiang); Mongolia; Russian Federation (Altay, Irkutsk, Krasnoyarsk, Tuva, West Siberia)
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: The number of mature trees of this very widespread species must count in the tens of millions.
Population Trend: Stable

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: Larix sibirica is common in the lowland taiga of W Siberia, where it forms the northern limit of trees alternately with Picea obovata and with Pinus sylvestris. It also occurs in the mountains (from 500 m to 2,400 m a.s.l.). It grows on a great variety of soils, from peat bogs to well drained, sandy or rocky soils, where it has its optimum. The climate is very cold (min. temp. -55° C), continental or subarctic, dry, with very long winters. There are pure stands on peat or on mountains above the steppe (Altai Mts.), but more common it is mixed with Pinus sylvestris, P. sibirica, Picea obovata, Abies sibirica and broad-leaved trees such as Betula pendula and Populus spp
Systems: Terrestrial

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Siberian Larch is an important timber tree in Russia. It is logged from natural coniferous forests as well as from plantations, which are established in Russia outside its natural range as well as in Finland, Poland and Sweden. The wood is durable and used in construction, traditionally for log houses in Siberia for which the wood is roughly hewn to shape, but untreated. It has been widely used for railroad sleepers e.g. on the famous Trans Siberian Railroad. Larch wood is also milled for construction timber and veneer and pulped for the paper industry. Siberian Larch is in cultivation as an amenity tree, but it is vulnerable to 'late' frosts in climatic zones with mild, fluctuating winter temperatures. For this reason it is not used in western Europe but successfully planted in central and eastern Europe, in Scandinavia, and as far afield as Iceland. A few cultivars are known, but with limited distinction from habit forms that also occur in nature.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): No specific threats have been identified for this species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Known from a number of protected areas.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Larix sibirica. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 01 August 2014.
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