Overview

Distribution

Range Description

Mexico: Nuevo León (Sierra Madre Oriental: Montemorelos, Aramberri). Known from six stands, all less than 150 km from each other. The extent of occurrence and area of occupancy are within the thresholds for Endangered and there are two locations.
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Physical Description

Type Information

Isotype for Picea martinezii Patterson
Catalog Number: US 3063988
Collection: Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History, Department of Botany
Verification Degree: Original publication and alleged type specimen examined
Preparation: Pressed specimen
Collector(s): T. Patterson
Year Collected: 1987
Locality: 6 km SE of La Trinidad, NE exposed talus slope below precipice El Butano., Montemorelos, Nuevo León, Mexico, North America
  • Isotype: Patterson, T. F. 1988. Sida. 13 (2): 131.
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Ecology

Habitat

Habitat and Ecology

Habitat and Ecology
One locality with this species (near La Trinidad, Montemorelos) is described as on slopes of coarse limestone talus in a sheltered canyon at 2,100-2,200 m a.s.l. in montane mixed coniferous-deciduous broad-leaved forest. Picea martinezii is here associated with Abies vejarii, Pinus spp., Taxus globosa, and angiosperm broad-leaved trees such as Quercus spp., Tilia, Ostrya, Cornus, Ilex, Juglans, and Crataegus. There is no surface water, but frequent rain and fog provide ample moisture to sustain a lush mesophytic forest type.

Systems
  • Terrestrial
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Molecular Biology and Genetics

Molecular Biology

Barcode data: Picea martinezii

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


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Statistics of barcoding coverage: Picea martinezii

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

Conservation Status

IUCN Red List Assessment


Red List Category
EN
Endangered

Red List Criteria
B1ab(ii,iii,v)+2ab(ii,iii,v); C1

Version
3.1

Year Assessed
2013

Assessor/s
Thomas, P. & Farjon, A.

Reviewer/s
Perez de la Rosa, J. & Rushforth, K.

Contributor/s

Justification
The extent of occurrence (EOO) and area of occupancy (AOO) are 565 km2 and 16 km2 respectively. There are two locations and an ongoing decline due to logging and fire. The total number of mature individuals is less than 800 and a continuing decline of at least 20% is likely within the next two generations. On this basis Picea martinezii is assessed as Endangered under the B1, B2 and C1 criteria.

History
  • 1998
    Critically Endangered
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Population

Population
The most recent census estimates that the total number of mature individuals does not exceed 800. The main (southern) stand at El Butano has an estimated 350 trees.

Population Trend
Decreasing
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Threats

Major Threats
This extremely rare species is restricted to two subpopulations about 150 km apart. The largest sub-population has suffered some logging in recent years from local lumber companies; the smallest population has fewer than 15 mature trees. Poor cone set and low seed viability has been noted in the two main stands. A potential threat is forest fires, which could easily destroy the smallest population in one event. Climate change is also a potential threat as subpopulations are small and occur within restricted habitats that present little opportunity for migration. The genus Picea is at or near its southernmost limit in Mexico (only in Taiwan does it extend a little further south) and species such as Picea martinezii are probably Pleistocene relicts that were more widespread during cooler climatic periods.
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Management

Conservation Actions

Conservation Actions
According to the Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales (Mexico) (2010) this species is in danger of extinction. Awareness of the conservation issue is growing and local foresters are monitoring the situation. Protection against wildfire and logging is essential. Strategies to improve seed production within stands could involve thinning some of the associated pines and other trees. Enrichment planting is also recommended provided that the young trees can be protected and competition with other species controlled. Ex situ conservation in the form of seed banking is also recommended: in the 1980s seed was collected and distributed to several arboreta and the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew (Rushforth 1986) but more concerted efforts are required.
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Wikipedia

Picea martinezii

Martinez Spruce (Picea martinezii) is a medium-sized evergreen tree growing to 25-35 m tall, and with a trunk diameter of up to 1 m. It is native to northeast Mexico, where it occurs at two localities in the Sierra Madre Oriental mountains in Nuevo León. It grows at moderate altitudes from 2150-2600 m, growing along streamsides in mountain valleys, where moisture levels in the soil are greater than the otherwise low rainfall in the area would suggest.

The bark is thin and scaly, flaking off in small circular plates 5-10 cm across. The crown is conic, with widely spaced branches with drooping branchlets. The shoots are stout, pale buff-brown, glabrous, and with prominent pulvini. The leaves are needle-like, 23-35 mm long, stout, moderately flattened in cross-section, bright glossy green with inconspicuous lines of stomata; the tip is viciously sharp.

The cones are pendulous, broad cylindrical, 8-16 cm long and 3 cm broad when closed, opening to 6 cm broad. They have stiff, smoothly rounded scales 2-2.5 cm broad, and are green, maturing pale brown 6–8 months after pollination. The seeds are black, 4 mm long, with a 12-16 mm long pale brown wing.

Martinez Spruce was only discovered in 1981, and is critically endangered with just two small populations, comprising a few hundred trees and a dozen trees respectively. Fossil evidence shows it had a wider distribution in the past, south to central Mexico. It is related to Chihuahua Spruce from northwest Mexico, but differs in the longer, green leaves, and the larger, broader cones with larger scales. No other related spruces are found in North America, with its next-closest relatives in eastern Asia.

It is a very attractive tree and is starting to be planted as an ornamental tree in botanical gardens, particularly valued in warm areas as it is one of the most heat-tolerant of all spruces. It is named after the Mexican botanist Maximino Martínez.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Thomas, P. & Farjon, A. (2011). "Picea martinezii". IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 3.1. International Union for Conservation of Nature. Retrieved 2013-11-10. 
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