Protected areas (PAs) are a strategic tool for biodiversity conservation, and conservation planning approaches are used to optimize PAs capacity to preserve specific target groups. Orchidaceae is one of the most threatened plant families, as most species are vulnerable to habitat changes because of their strong ecological specialization. Italy plays a key role in biogeography as a result of its geographical position and hosts one of the most diverse orchid floras in the Mediterranean Basin. The aim of this work is to depict the degree of protection granted to orchids by the current network of PAs across the entire Italian country, testing whether distributional and ecological features affect species' conservation representativeness, and identifying a priority list of species to be further protected. We compiled a dataset comprising 71,693 occurrence records, the spatial conservation representativeness was calculated as the percent of occurrences falling within the borders of PAs. Generalized Linear Models were run to assess differences in the spatial conservation representativeness among species according to the preferred habitat, endemicity, chorology, and protection by the Habitats Directive. We produced a list of species to be used for prioritizing conservation planning. Our findings show that emphasis is needed on adopting orchid species linked to primary or well mature habitats to select additional PAs with high conservation significance. Our findings reiterate the urgency of targeted conservation actions that can protect orchids and prevent their decline.

Prioritizing conservation of terrestrial orchids: A gap analysis for Italy

Dolci, D;Peruzzi, L;
2024-01-01

Abstract

Protected areas (PAs) are a strategic tool for biodiversity conservation, and conservation planning approaches are used to optimize PAs capacity to preserve specific target groups. Orchidaceae is one of the most threatened plant families, as most species are vulnerable to habitat changes because of their strong ecological specialization. Italy plays a key role in biogeography as a result of its geographical position and hosts one of the most diverse orchid floras in the Mediterranean Basin. The aim of this work is to depict the degree of protection granted to orchids by the current network of PAs across the entire Italian country, testing whether distributional and ecological features affect species' conservation representativeness, and identifying a priority list of species to be further protected. We compiled a dataset comprising 71,693 occurrence records, the spatial conservation representativeness was calculated as the percent of occurrences falling within the borders of PAs. Generalized Linear Models were run to assess differences in the spatial conservation representativeness among species according to the preferred habitat, endemicity, chorology, and protection by the Habitats Directive. We produced a list of species to be used for prioritizing conservation planning. Our findings show that emphasis is needed on adopting orchid species linked to primary or well mature habitats to select additional PAs with high conservation significance. Our findings reiterate the urgency of targeted conservation actions that can protect orchids and prevent their decline.
2024
Lussu, M; Ancillotto, L; Labadessa, R; Di Musciano, M; Zannini, P; Testolin, R; Santi, F; Dolci, D; Conti, M; Marignani, M; Martellos, S; Peruzzi, L; Chiarucci, A
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11568/1220408
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