Abies spectabilis 

Scope:Global
Status_ne_offStatus_dd_offStatus_lc_offStatus_nt_onStatus_vu_offStatus_en_offStatus_cr_offStatus_ew_offStatus_ex_off

Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Pinopsida Pinales Pinaceae

Scientific Name: Abies spectabilis
Species Authority: (D.Don) Spach
Common Name(s):
English Webb Fir, Himalayan Fir
Synonym(s):
Pinus spectabilis D.Don
Taxonomic Source(s): Farjon, A. 2010. A Handbook of the World's Conifers. Koninklijke Brill, Leiden.
Taxonomic Notes: Abies spectabilis used to include Abies densa Griff. in the past, but this is treated separately here. However, some older references will give a distribution extending east of East Nepal. The boundary is on the Milke Danda, where A. spectabilis occurs at lower elevations, separated from A. densa, which is in the upper forest.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Near Threatened ver 3.1
Year Published: 2011
Date Assessed: 2010-12-16
Assessor(s): Zhang, D, Rushforth, K. & Katsuki, T.
Reviewer(s): Thomas, P. & Farjon, A.
Justification:
Abies spectabilis as a wide distribution from East Nepal into eastern Afghanistan and is usually the dominant tree in the stands but may occur with other conifers or broadleafed trees. The forest has suffered severe depletion, especially at the lower elevations, from logging and deforestation. A population decline of approximately 25% over the past three generation has occurred. This tree is therefore listed as Near Threatened approaching Vulnerable A2.
Previously published Red List assessments:
  • 1998 – Lower Risk/least concern (LR/lc)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is found in Afghanistan (Hindu Kush), Pakistan (Karakoram Range), China (W Xizang [Tibet]), India (Kashmir Himalaya) and Nepal ( from the Milke Danda ridge westwards).
Countries occurrence:
Native:
Afghanistan; China (Tibet [or Xizang]); India (Himachal Pradesh, Jammu-Kashmir, Uttar Pradesh); Nepal; Pakistan
Additional data:
Lower elevation limit (metres):2450
Upper elevation limit (metres):4000
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:The species has a wide distribution from East Nepal into eastern Afghanistan. It occurs along the southern side of the Himalaya and outlying ridges, forming forests at higher elevation. Abies spectabilis is usually the dominant tree in the stands but may occur with other conifers or broadleafed trees such as Betula and Acer in parts of the range.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:Abies spectabilis is the dominant tree in the forests of the central and western Himalaya, especially from c. 3,000 m to 4,000 m, with occasional occurrences on ridges below this height. It needs cool moist conditions at the roots, thus growing better on north facing slopes and often giving way to grass or shrubs on south facing ones.
Systems:Terrestrial
Generation Length (years):50

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Abies spectabilis provides a useful timber which is available in large sizes.

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The forest has suffered severe depletion, especially at the lower elevations, from logging and deforestation. The species is reported to have been lost from the easternmost occurrence in East Nepal in the past 20 years. Deforestation and conversion of land to agriculture is the largest threat, but logging, if followed either by fire or grazing can also lead to the loss of habitat for the species.

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: It is included in some nature reserves in Nepal and India.

Classifications [top]

1. Forest -> 1.4. Forest - Temperate
suitability: Suitable  major importance:Yes

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
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.1. Shifting agriculture
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Minority (<50%) ♦ severity: Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 5 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.2. Small-holder farming
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Minority (<50%) ♦ severity: Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 5 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.1. Nomadic grazing
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Minority (<50%) ♦ severity: Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 5 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.2. Small-holder grazing, ranching or farming
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Minority (<50%) ♦ severity: Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score: Low Impact: 5 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation

5. Biological resource use -> 5.3. Logging & wood harvesting -> 5.3.5. Motivation Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing: Ongoing ♦ scope: Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity: Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score: Medium Impact: 6 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality


♦  Construction or structural materials
 Local : ✓ 

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: http://www.catalogueoflife.org/.

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

IUCN. 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2011.2). Available at: http://www.iucnredlist.org. (Accessed: 10 November 2011).


Citation: Zhang, D, Rushforth, K. & Katsuki, T. 2011. Abies spectabilis. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T42300A10686224. . Downloaded on 24 July 2016.
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