Southern Africa and Madagascar

The Southern Africa and Madagascar Threatened Conifer Region only includes conifers from the families Podocarpaceae and Cupressaceae. Apart from a few remnant coastal forests with Afrocarpus falcatus in South Africa and Mozambique, the conifers are mostly restricted to highland Afromontane areas, characterized by a patchy mosaic of forest and grassland. At mid elevations the subtropical forests consist of a mixture of angiosperm and Podocarps while at higher altitudes the forest is Podocarp dominant. Seventeen conifer taxa are found in this region, nine of which are currently globally threatened. In Madagascar there are seven endemic conifer taxa, five of which are threatened and all restricted to tropical montane forest of which more than 90% has been lost. On the mainland, the four species of Widdringtonia (Cupressaceae) occur at mid to high elevations on steep rocky slopes or in Afromontane forests. Two of these are threatened and one is Near Threatened. Threats in this conifer region include fire (especially for three of the four Widdringtonias) deforestation and grazing. In Madagascar forest loss is due to slash-and-burn, selective logging and overgrazing.

Taxa in the category - Southern Africa and Madagascar:

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Podocarpus capuronii de Laub.

One of five threatened species of Podocarpus endemic to Madagascar where threats include deforestation, cutting for firewood, fires and grazing. Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus henkelii Stapf ex Dallim. & A.B.Jacks.

Occurs in South Africa, Malawi,Tanzania and Zimbabwe where logging for its valuable wood and deforestation threaten it. Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus humbertii de Laub.

One of five threatened species of Podocarpus endemic to Madagascar where it is has a fragmented distribution due to grazing and habitat degredation.     Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus madagascariensis var. procerus ( de Laub. ) Silba

One of five threatened species of Podocarpus endemic to Madagascar and because of ongoing logging and deforestation it now has a very restricted area of occupancy. Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus perrieri Gaussen & Woltz

One of five threatened Podocarpus species endemic to Madagascar where it has been severely impacted by deforestation Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus rostratus M.Laurent

One of five Podocarpus species endemic to Madagascar and only known from three highly disjunct localities where deforestation, grazing and fire have had major impacts Read full species entry >

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Widdringtonia cedarbergensis J.A.Marsh

Endemic to South Africa where historical exploitation for its valuable timber and more recently fire have greatly reduced the population Read full species entry >

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Widdringtonia schwarzii (Marloth) Mast.

Endemic to the eastern Cape Province of South Africa where past over-exploitation has greatly reduced the population; today the major threats include wildfires Read full species entry >

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