Biodiversity Science ›› 2012, Vol. 20 ›› Issue (2): 177-183.doi: 10.3724/SP.J.1003.2012.07108

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Assessment of in situ conservation of 1,334 native orchids in China

Weihua Qin1, 2, Mingkang Jiang1*, Wanggu Xu1, Zhaohe He1   

  1. 1Nanjing Institute of Environmental Science, Ministry of Environmental Protection, Nanjing 210042

    2College of Forest Resources and Environment, Nanjing Forestry University, Nanjing 210037
  • Received:2011-07-05 Revised:2011-12-31 Online:2012-04-09
  • Mingkang Jiang E-mail:baohuqu@gmail.com

We assessed the status of 1,334 Chinese orchids species in terms of in situ conservation based on analysis of orchid distribution data from 543 nature reserves. Based on the number of nature reserves the orchid species have been recorded, combined with expert consultant, we determined six conservation catagories, i.e., effective conservation, better conservation, general conservation, less conservation, unknown, and not evaluated. Our results indicate that 676 orchids are currently protected by nature reserves, accounting for 51.9% of total species, and that 626 orchids (46.9%) are not found in nature reserves. In addition, 32 orchids distributed only in Hongkong, Macao and Taiwan areas were not evaluated in this paper, accounting for 2.4% of total species. Based on our assessment, we herein discuss the main problems facing orchid conservation including field survey deficiencies, lack of attention, and low rates of protecting species through in situ conservation in China. We put forward five suggestions: (1) promoting research on and monitoring of orchids; (2) increasing awareness and protection of orchids in China; (3) prioritizing the construction and design of nature reserves for orchid protection; (4) regulating biotic surveys of nature reserves through enforcement of a unified standard; and (5) regular assessment of the effectiveness of orchid conservation in China.

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