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Abstract Detail

Ecological Section

Salazar, Gerardo [1], Ballesteros-Barrera, Claudia [1].

Using niche modeling to assess potential further spread of the African invasive orchid Oeceoclades maculata in Mexico.

Oeceoclades maculata is a terrestrial orchid first discovered in Brazil early in the XIX century but now believed to be native to tropical Africa.In the few last decades it spread out from South America throughout Central America and the Caribbean islands, and into Florida, USA. In the early 1990's a first population of O. maculata was recorded in the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico and since then the species has dispersed widely in south-eastern Mexico, thriving in moderately disturbed as well as in well-conserved,wet- to seasonally dry tropical forest habitats. However, so far O. maculata is restricted in Mexico to the Gulf slope and its northern limit of distribution is coincident with the north-western edge of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec (foothills of the Sierra de los Tuxtlas in southern Veracruz and the area of Tuxtepec in northern Oaxaca). In this study we performed ecological niche modelling based on georeferenced occurrence data and environmental data layers analysed with the Maxent software package to generate potential distribution maps for O. maculata. Our aim was identifying additional areas with potentially suitable environmental conditions for this species in parts of Mexico where it has not been recorded. Two models were generated, one using only data from Mexican localities and the other based on all available records from the global distribution of the species. The potential distribution modelled only from Mexican records closely matches the known distribution of O. maculata in this country but fails to predict its presence in other areas where it has been confirmed (e.g. Florida). On the other hand, the projection based on all global records identifies large expanses of suitable environmental conditions both on the Gulf slope (most lowland areas of Veracruz and adjacent states, north to central Tamaulipas) and on the Pacific watershed, where the species has never been found, suggesting that, at least as to environmental abiotic conditions, O. maculata is likely to continue expanding its range in Mexico

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1 - Departamento de Biologia, Universidad Autonoma Metropolitana Iztapalap, Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico

invasive species
environmental niche modeling
Oeceoclades maculata

Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Sections
Session: P
Location: Khorassan Ballroom/Chase Park Plaza
Date: Monday, July 11th, 2011
Time: 5:30 PM
Number: PEC023
Abstract ID:711


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