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The baobabs of the Comoro Islands: Some biogeographical factors towards the protection and conservation of a neglected asset

Abdillah M.M., Cornu C., Fadul R., Charpentier M., Roger E., Rakouth B., Leong Pock Tsy J.M., Danthu P.. 2019. Tropical Ecology, 60 (3) : p. 311- 325.

This study aims to provide some information about the area of presence and geographical breakdown of baobabs belonging to the Adansonia digitata species on the four Comoro Islands. Two of the eight known species of baobabs in the world are present in the Comoro Islands. Whilst they have asset value, a thorough study of their geographical distribution has yet to be produced and there is very little existing action to protect and conserve the asset. An inventory of the A. digitata populations on the islands (Grande Comore, Mohéli, Anjouan and Mayotte) and islets of the archipelago was carried out. From this, it was possible to map the geographical breakdown and analyse the spacial distribution of the baobabs. Their distribution seems to be strongly associated to their proximity to the coastline, suggesting the seeds are dispersed by marine hydrochory. The ecological status of this species based on IUCN status assessment, is known from the threats and pressures incurred and its distribution according to their ecological preferences. The species is categorized as Endangered (ER). The data from this study should contribute to improved management and conservation of the Adansonia species in the Comoros, a growing requirement in the light of concerns about anthropogenic pressure.

Mots-clés : espèce en danger; distribution géographique; adansonia digitata; mayotte; comores

Thématique : Taxonomie végétale et phyto-géographie; Conservation de la nature et ressources foncières; Ecologie végétale

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