Podocarpus deflexus Ridl.

Podocarpaceae

Currently known from two populations in Pahang (Peninsular Malaysia) and north Sumatera (Indonesia) where fire is a possible threat

Associated Names:

Distribution

Confined to Peninsular Malaysia, Gunung Tahan in Pahang and to Indonesia in north Sumatra where it occurs in the Gajo Lands

The two known populations are presumably small. The lack of recent herbarium collections is possibly an artifact and cannot be taken as direct evidence on population trends. This species is known from 10 to 12 herbarium collections only, all but one from the location in Malaysia (de Laubenfels pers. comm., 2006).

Habitat and Ecology

A shrub or small tree of moist montane scrub. Locally dominant in some areas. Elevation based on herbarium specimens is1590 to 1830 metres above sea-level.

Conservation Status

Global status

Near Threatened (Endangered B2ab(iii)

Global rationale

This species was listed as Data Deficient until a new assessment by the Conifer Specialist Group in 2006 listed it as Endangered [EN B2ab(iii)] inferring continuing decline due to habitat degradation. In the Flora of Peninsular Malaysia, Vol. 1 (Farjon 2010) the population on Gunung Tahan was considered “totally protected” and its conservation status for Malaysia was listed as Least Concern. There is no evidence of decline of the population on this mountain. It is extremely remote and no roads come near it. The fire hazard is present from trekkers only and less great than on Mt. Kinabalu, which receives thousands of visitors. No specific details are known of the locality in Sumatera, but this is within a protected area where degradation and encroachment have been reported. These may be having an effect on this species. In the absence of better information, an assessment of Near Threatened appears to be a suitable precautionary listing (it almost qualifies for a threatened listing under criterion B2ab(iii)). Further field work in Sumatera may reveal other localities or provide direct evidence of decline which could justify listing in one of the threatened categories

Global threats

Possible habitat degradation through fire.

Conservation Actions

The known collections were recorded from the Taman Negara (Malaysia) and Gunung Leuser Reserves.