China

The China Threatened Conifer Region includes most of mainland China. Climatically and topographically it is diverse and one of the world's major centres for plant diversity. It has a rich conifer flora with more than 150 taxa including iconic endemic conifers such as Metasequoia glyptostroboides, Pseudolarix amabilis and Cathaya argyrophylla. Unfortunately almost half have been assessed as threatened. The principal threats arise from conversion of forest for agricultural use, plantation forestry and urbanization as well as recent exploitation for timber. A number of taxa are relictual and naturally have small populations: these are especially susceptible to anthropogenic influences. Several taxa, including, Cupressus funebris, Cunninghamia lanceolata and Platycladus orientalis have a long history of cultivation and their natural distributions have become unclear and it is uncertain if any wild populations still remain. The majority of threatened species are concentrated in the Sino-Himalayan areas of Yunnan and Sichuan, the limestone karst areas of Guangxi and Guizhou and the mountainous areas of Fujian and Zhejiang.

Taxa in the category - China:

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Cephalotaxus latifolia W.C.Cheng & L.K.Fu ex L.K.Fu & R.R.Mill

A difficult to identify species that is likely to be widespread in China. Past exploitation for medicinal use and deforestation have resulted in an an assessment of Near Threatened. Read full species entry >

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Cephalotaxus mannii Hook. f.

Although widely distributed in southeastern Asia it is often targeted for its timber. Futher threats include the conversion of its habitat to agriculture land which has resulted in severe forest fragmentation. Read full species entry >

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Cephalotaxus oliveri Mast.

Widely distributed in China where it has suffered from deforestation for agricultural, logging for timber and fuelwood as well as direct exploitation for its bark and other plant parts. Read full species entry >

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Cupressus chengiana S.Y. Hu

Distributed in Gansu and Sichuan where the main threat is deforestation Read full species entry >

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Cupressus chengiana var. chengiana

Native to China where it is distributed in Gansu and Sichuan; deforestation has caused the decline of this valued timber species. Read full species entry >

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Cupressus chengiana var. jiangeensis (N.Zhao) Silba

Restricted to north Sichuan in China where only one original tree survives Read full species entry >

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Fokienia hodginsii (Dunn) A.Henry & H.H.Thomas

A very widespread species that has been heavily exploited for its valuable and durable timber. Despite legal protection, illegal logging continues to reduce the number of mature trees throughout most of its range. Read full species entry >

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Glyptostrobus pensilis (Staunton ex D.Don) K.Koch

Wild populations are only known to occur in small fragmented stands in Lao PDR and Việt Nam. Once widespread in southeast China, centuries of agricultural expansion have resulted in the loss of probably all natural populations in that area. Current threats include habitat conversion, swamp drainage and illegal logging.  Read full species entry >

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