Southern Mesoamerica

The Mexican and southwest USA Threatened Conifer Region stretches from central southern California south to the Guatemalan border. In the north a broadly Mediterranean climate prevails with summer droughts a major limiting factor. In Mexico, conifers occur in a range of climates that include cold subalpine areas of the highest volcanoes and the lush, lowland tropical forests. Most species are found in the pine-oak woodlands that once covered extensive areas of the many mountain ranges in Mexico.  This region is important for conifer diversity and is the main centre for the genus Pinus with over 50 species which represents 50% of all known species. Unfortunately this region has the highest number of threatened taxa with more than 60  mostly being threatened mainly by widespread over-exploitation, fire and the conversion of forests for agriculture. Many species are narrow endemics of relictual origin with small populations close to the tops of mountains. These taxa are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of changes to precipitation associated with climate change. 

Taxa in the category - Southern Mesoamerica:

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Abies hickelii Flous & Gaussen

Endemic to southeastern Mexico where the population is severely fragmented as a result of deforestation Read full species entry >

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Abies hickelii var. hickelii

Endemic to southeastern Mexico where the population is severely fragmented as a result of deforestation Read full species entry >

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Abies hickelii var. oaxacana (Martínez) Farjon & Silba

Endemic to southwestern Mexico where deforestation is a major threat Read full species entry >

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Juniperus standleyi Steyerm.

Distributed in southern Mexico and northern Guatemala where clearance for agricultural purposes and logging is a threat Read full species entry >

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Pinus chiapensis (Martínez) Andresen

Distributed in southern Mexico and Guatemala where it has been logged and forests have been converted for agricultural use. On the IUCN Redlist, this species is listed as a variety of Pinus strobus L. Read full species entry >

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Pinus tecunumanii F.Schwerdtf. ex Eguiluz & J.P.Perry

Has a scattered distribution in Central America where it is threatened by logging, forest clearance, fire and grazing Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus costaricensis de Laub.

This species is limited to four locations in Costa Rica and has seen a decline because of deforestation and changes in land use. Read full species entry >

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Podocarpus matudae Lundell

A widespread species in Central America, however, most forests are under pressure from logging, deforestation, habitat degradation. Read full species entry >

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