Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Pinopsida Pinales Pinaceae

Scientific Name: Abies vejarii
Species Authority: Martínez
Infra-specific Taxa Assessed:
Common Name(s):
English Vejar's Fir
Spanish Hayarin
Taxonomic Source(s): Farjon, A. 2010. A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.
Taxonomic Notes: Strandby et al. (2009) concluded that Abies vejarii and its various constituent infrataxa including A. zapotekensis are conspecific with A. religiosa, and they combined all of these as a new subspecies - A. religiosa ssp. mexicana. There is no consensus on the taxonomy of Abies in southern Mexico and Guatemala and hence this new taxonomy is not followed here.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-05-09
Assessor(s): Farjon, A.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P., Perez de la Rosa, J. & Rushforth, K.

Although all three varieties taken separately qualify under criterion D2 for Vulnerable, taken together the species as a whole is just too widespread and occurs in too many locations. It would take the removal of several stands (localities sampled) by e.g. destructive forest fires, before the species would qualify for Vulnerable, it is therefore assessed as Near Threatened (almost qualifies for listing as Vulnerable under criterion D2).

Previously published Red List assessments:
1998 Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Endemic to northeast Mexico where it occurs in the Sierra Madre Oriental in Coahuila, Nuevo León, and Tamaulipas states.
Countries occurrence:
Mexico (Coahuila, Nuevo León, Tamaulipas)
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:144
Number of Locations:10
Lower elevation limit (metres):1900
Upper elevation limit (metres):3300
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The population is likely to be decreasing through wildfires and deforestation rather then logging.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:Yes

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Abies vejarii is a high mountain species, occurring between (1,900-)2,800 m and 3,300 m a.s.l. on steep mountain slopes near the summits or in cool ravines. The soils are usually poor in humus content, but moist; the climate is cool, with relatively dry summers and wet winters. The species is commonly associated with various species of Pinus and with Pseudotsuga menziesii var. glauca, also with Quercus spp.; Cupressus arizonica and Picea engelmannii subsp. mexicana (another endemic relict taxon) have been reported with Abies vejarii var. mexicana.
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes
Generation Length (years):40

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: This species and its infraspecific taxa are relatively rare trees with limited distribution, consequently their importance as timber trees is negligible. The species (including its infraspecific taxa) has been introduced to cultivation in the USA and Europe, but it remains restricted to arboreta and other plant collections despite its attractiveness and suitability especially in regions with warm summers and mild, wet winters. Cultivation from wild origin seed of var. mexicana would under appropriate circumstances contribute to ex situ conservation of this threatened taxon.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The most obvious threat to this species is the occurrence of devastating wildfires. It is not a commercial timber tree and logging, if it occurs, is limited.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: Some stands of this species occur within protected areas, such as on Cerro Potosí.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.4. Forest - Temperate
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.1. Site/area protection
1. Land/water protection -> 1.2. Resource & habitat protection

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
In-Place Species Management
In-Place Education
7. Natural system modifications -> 7.1. Fire & fire suppression -> 7.1.1. Increase in fire frequency/intensity
♦ timing: Ongoing    
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

1. Research -> 1.2. Population size, distribution & trends
1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
3. Monitoring -> 3.1. Population trends
3. Monitoring -> 3.4. Habitat trends

Bibliography [top]

Farjon, A. 2010. Conifer Database (June 2008) In Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2010 Annual Checklist (Bisby F.A., Roskov Y.R., Orrell T.M., Nicolson D., Paglinawan L.E., Bailly N., Kirk P.M., Bourgoin T., Baillargeon G., eds). Reading, UK. Available at:

Farjon, A. 2010. A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.

IUCN. 2013. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2013.1). Available at: (Accessed: 12 June 2013).

Strandby, U., Cristensen, K. and Sørensen, M. 2009. A morphometric study of the Abies religiosa–hickelii–guatemalensis complex (Pinaceae) in Guatemala and Mexico. Plant Systematics and Evolution 260: 59-76.

Citation: Farjon, A. 2013. Abies vejarii. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T42302A2970671. . Downloaded on 04 October 2015.
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