Khoury, Colin , Greene, Stephanie , Castañeda Alvarez, Nora Patricia .
Initial Steps toward a National Conservation Strategy for Crop Wild Relatives of the United States .
An effective strategy for conservation of biodiversity worldwide requires a spectrum of actions enacted from the global to the local level. Agricultural biodiversity is no exception, and the wild relatives of crops (CWR), as important genetic resources for crop improvement, represent a dual challenge of requiring conservation as well as access for use. In many regions these resources are threatened by habitat modification, land use changes, and other factors, requiring their urgent collection and long-term availability for research and breeding from ex situ genebank collections, as well as their adequate protection in situ in order to support an evolving genepool for the uses of the future. CWR resources are often globally important, yet their management is dependent upon national policy and interests. We suggest that an effective national approach toward the conservation of CWR entails the systematic coverage of this diversity in a network of genetic reserves, with samples of this diversity safeguarded in national genebanks. We present the work to date on planning for a national effort to conserve CWR and economically important taxa that are native or naturalized in the United States. We are developing a national inventory of taxa that represent CWR of the world's crops, or are directly used for food, fiber, forage, forestry, industrial, medicinal, ornamental, and restoration purposes, which currently contains close to 3,000 taxa. We have also developed a methodology for identification of the genepools of the world's important crops. Especially species-rich native genepools of important crops include Allium (onion), Carya (pecan), Fragaria (strawberry), Helianthus (sunflower), Hordeum (barley), Ipomoea (sweet potato), Lactuca (lettuce), Nicotiana (tobacco), Phaseolus (bean), Prunus (cherry, almond,peach), Ribes (currant), Rubus (raspberry), Vaccinium (blueberry, cranberry), and Vitis (grape), and many additional genera are also represented. We conclude by discussing our next steps for developing a national conservation strategy for crop wild relatives: prioritizing taxa by relatedness to crop species, assessing the coverage of CWR in genebanks and in protected areas, and making recommendations for conservation actions.
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1 - International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), Decision and Policy Analysis Program, Km 17, Recta Cali-Palmira, Apartado Aéreo 6713, Cali, Colombia
2 - United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service, National Temperate Forage Legume Germplasm Resources Unit, 24106 North Bunn Road, Prosser, WA, 99350, USA
crop wild relatives
plant genetic resources
genetic resource conservation.
Presentation Type: Poster:Posters for Topics
Location: Khorassan Ballroom/Chase Park Plaza
Date: Monday, July 11th, 2011
Time: 5:30 PM