Overview

Distribution

Range Description

Zostera caulescens has a very limited distribution. It occurs in the northeast Pacific in northern China, South Korea and in central Japan (it may also be in North Korea). It has an extent of occurrence of near to 20,000 km², and is known from around 10 locations.
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Localities documented in Tropicos sources

Zostera caulescens Miki:
Japan (Asia)
North Korea (Asia)
South Korea (Asia)
China (Asia)

Note: This information is based on publications available through Tropicos and may not represent the entire distribution. Tropicos does not categorize distributions as native or non-native.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
Zostera caulescens is found in both sheltered and semi-exposed bays on sandy or muddy bottoms in depths of 6-12 m along temperate sea coasts of northeastern Asia (Miki 1932, den Hartog 1970). It prefers deeper waters due to its tall growth. It is also found in Japan, in deeper habitats than Zostera marina, between 3-16 m (Aioi et al. 1998).

Zostera caulescens is believed to be the world's longest seagrass and was collected in lengths of up to seven m, with a typical length of 4.8 m in a bay of northeastern Japan. The flowering shoots are produced on a proliferation of vegetative leaves at the top of a stem. Flowering shoots take one year to mature and develop spadices, over-wintering in the bed.

Systems
  • Marine
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Zostera caulescens

The following is a representative barcode sequence, the centroid of all available sequences for this species.


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Source: Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD)

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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Zostera caulescens

Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLDS) Stats
Public Records: 3
Specimens with Barcodes: 3
Species With Barcodes: 1
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Conservation

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
NT
Near Threatened

Red List Criteria

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2010

Assessor/s
Short, F.T. & Waycott, M.

Reviewer/s
Livingstone, S., Harwell, H. & Carpenter, K.E.

Contributor/s

Justification
Zostera caulescens is found in North Korea and Japan, and possibly China. It has a very restricted range and the population is thought to be declining due to reduced water quality. This species is particularly sensitive to pollution. Habitat loss from coastal development and dredging is also a major threat. It prefers deeper waters due to its tall growth. The species almost reaches the threshold for Vulnerable as it has an extent of occurrence of near to 20,000 km², and is known from around 10 locations with a continuing decline in population and quality of habitat. This species is listed as Near Threatened. Further research is recommended for this species, as it may fall into a threatened category if more detailed information were available.
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Population

Population
The population of Zostera caulescens is thought to be declining due to coastal pollution.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
Zostera caulescens is sensitive to pollution and reduced water quality is a particular threat. Habitat loss is also a major threat to this species, as is dredging.

Within its range in Japan there is industrial development in coastal regions, land reclamation, water pollution and disturbance of habitats by fish trawling. In South Korea there is a large amount of coastal eutrophication and some land reclamation.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
The distribution of Zostera caulescens falls into protected areas in South Korea ( Environmental Conservation Areas or Special Coastal Management Areas). This species is also protected by 'The Marine Ecosystem Conservation and Management Act' in Korea.

Zostera caulescens is listed as Vulnerable (vulnerable stage) in the Red Data Book of threatened Japanese plant species (2000).

Further research on population and general biology of this species is recommended.
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