Part of the book: The Dynamical Processes of Biodiversity
Part of the book: Biodiversity in Ecosystems
Due to its geographic isolation, Chile is a biogeographic island which harbors a high percentage of endemism. More than 50% of the native vascular flora is endemic and more than 60% lives in Central Chile, included in the Chilean Biodiversity Hotspot. Endemic are species with a geographic distribution restricted to a single area and could be especially vulnerable. For these reasons, updated lists of endemic species are necessary. Based on a databases, the study of specimens from two Chilean herbaria and the available literature, we present an updated list of grasses endemic to Chile indicating for each taxon the scientific accepted name, common names, type, life cycle, flowering period, distribution, conservation status, bibliographic references and representative specimen. Seventy-one species (19.9% of the native grass species) were classified as endemic. Most species occur along the Chilean hotspot of biodiversity, mainly in the Mediterranean region of the hotspot. One species (Podophorus bromoides) is extinct, three species are critically endangered, two species are endangered, one species is vulnerable, and one species is near threatened. The conservation status of most species (89%) needs to be evaluated. Most of the threatened species are endemic to the Juan Fernández Archipelago.
Part of the book: Grasses
The genus Alstroemeria encompasses approximately 80 species endemic to South America, with 2 centers of diversity (Chile and Brazil). In Chile, Alstroemeria represents one of the most diverse genera of vascular monocotyledons, comprising more than 50 recognized or accepted taxa (36 species, 11 subspecies and 10 varieties) from which ca. 82% are endemic to the Mediterranean zone of central Chile, one of the world’s diversity hotspots. The taxonomy of the genus is very difficult due to the great variability of the vegetative and floral traits. Moreover, a number of taxa have been recently described and several nomenclatural changes have been proposed. In order to elucidate the taxonomy of some Chilean complexes of Alstroemeria, an integrative approach including morphology, colorimetry, cytogenetic, multivariate statistical analyses of morphological variation and DNA-molecular studies have been conducted. In this chapter, we review the literature concerning these approaches; a checklist of the species growing in Chile is provided including all published names, references to the original protologues, accepted names, synonyms and the biogeographic status (endemic or native) of the accepted taxa; maps illustrating the diversity of the genus in South America and its distribution in Chile were constructed.
Part of the book: Selected Studies in Biodiversity