Podocarpus buchii Urban

Podocarpaceae

Endemic to the Dominican Republic and Haiti where it is mainly threatened by habitat loss due to agriculture, logging, fire and tornadoes.

Associated Names:

Distribution

Distributed in Hispaniola in Haiti where it occurs in Parc National La Visite and in the Dominican Republic where it is afforded protection in the Parque Nacional Sierra de Bahoruco.

Habitat and Ecology

Forms a shrub or small tree to 15m tall. This species can occur in cloud forests, typically on north-facing slopes with broadleaved species and tree ferns. In the Dominican Republic associated species include: Brunella comocladifolia, Didymopanax tremulus, Garrya fadyenii, Juniperus sp., Magnolia sp. Pinus occidentalis, Rapanea ferruginea and Vaccinium cubense. The substrate can be hard karst limestone (Haiti) or red clayey soils.

Human Uses

No uses have been recorded for this species.

Conservation Status

Global status

Endangered A2ac

Global rationale

Podocarpus buchii is distributed in the island of Hispaniola where it mainly occurs in the Dominican Republic and a small part of Haiti. In both countries it has suffered severe levels of habitat loss due to logging, forest clearance for agricultural and commercial plantations, fire and mining. The most severe habitat degradation and loss of locations is thought to have occurred in Haiti. The severity of loss is estimated as ca 50% over three generations; a generation here is estimated to be between 25–30 years. In both countries there continues to be a decline in habitat quality even in the protected areas where this podocarpus species occurs. As a result of this loss this species has been assessed as Endangered A2ac

Global threats

In Hispaniola the habitat of P. buchii is under continuous threat from habitat loss due to agriculture, logging, fire and tornadoes. In Haiti it is thought that most habitats for this species have either been lost or are severely degraded. In the Sierra de Bahoruco National Park there is relatively good protection but even here there are many threats which include, forest clearance for agriculture, charcoal production (the main cooking fuel in most of Haiti and in some rural areas of the Dominican Republic), forest fires and mining.

Conservation Actions

In Haiti it occurs in La Visite National Park. In the Dominican Republic it is afforded protection in the Sierra de Bahoruco National Park.