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Table of Content
    Volume 28 Issue 1
    20 January 2020
    Macrofungi play an irreplaceable role in the ecosystem and are closely related to human life. In this issue, we introduce the assessment progress of the first China’s red list of macrofungi. From the left to the right, from the top to the bottom, pictures presented in the cover are six threatened fungi species: Naematelia aurantialba, Ophiocordyceps sinensis, Hypsizygus marmoreus, Hericium erinaceus, Taiwanofungus camphoratus, and Umbilicaria esculenta. The habitats of these edible and medicinal fungi have been under threat due to climate change and human activities. Sufficient attention and necessary actions are needed to protect the resources and diversity of macrofungi. (Designed by Ke Wang and Yijian Yao. The photos were taken by Yanjia Hao, Lei Jiao, Zhuliang Yang, Zaiwei Ge, Jinzhong Lin and Xinli Wei)
      
    Editorial
    Red list assessment of macrofungi in China
    Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  1-3.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019152
    Abstract ( 522 )   HTML ( 18 )   PDF (397KB) ( 349 )   Supplementary Material   Save
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    Development of red list assessment of macrofungi in China
    Yijian Yao, Jiangchun Wei, Wenying Zhuang, Lei Cai, Dongmei Liu, Junsheng Li, Tiezheng Wei, Yi Li, Ke Wang, Haijun Wu
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  4-10.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019173
    Abstract ( 435 )   HTML ( 8 )   PDF (698KB) ( 270 )   Save
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    Macrofungi are important with both their ecological and socioeconomic values. Due to environmental pollution, climate change, habitat loss and fragmentation, and over-exploitation of resources, the diversity of macrofungi is under serious threatened. To evaluate the threatened status of macrofungi nationwide in China, the project of “Red List Assessment of Macrofungi in China” was officially launched in 2016 by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment (formerly the Ministry of Environmental Protection) in conjunction with the Chinese Academy of Sciences. Based on extensive and comprehensive collection of literature on the occurrence and distribution of macrofungi in China, and referring to the categories and criteria of the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Species, the evaluation methods and process of the Red List of China's macrofungi were formulated according to the biological features of macrofungi and the current understanding of macrofungi in China. Experts on macrofungi around China were mobilized and organized to assess the threatened status of 9,302 species of macrofungi reported in China. Ninety-seven species are considered under threatened (including Possibly Extinct, Critically Endangered, Endangered and Vulnerable), accounting for 1.04% of the total number of species assessed; 101 species are Near Threatened, 2,764 species are Least Concern and 6,340 species are Data Deficient, occupying 1.09%, 29.71% and 68.16%, successively, of the species assessed. The assessment, which brings together the wisdom of more than 140 experts all over the country, is the first nationwide attempt to assess the threaten status of macrofungi in China, involving the largest number of macrofungal species, the widest range of macrofungal groups, the widest coverage of distribution area and the largest number of expert participants at home and abroad. It is of great significance to the conservation and management of the diversity of macrofungi in China.

    Methods and procedures of the red list assessment of macrofungi in China
    Ke Wang, Dongmei Liu, Lei Cai, Haijun Wu, Yi Li, Tiezheng Wei, Yonghui Wang, Hongmei Wu, Xiaodan Wei, Binbin Li, Junsheng Li, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  11-19.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019172
    Abstract ( 296 )   HTML ( 4 )   PDF (1047KB) ( 211 )   Save
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    In The Red List Assessment of Macrofungi in China project, the IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria were adjusted according to differences in biological characteristics among plants, animals, and macrofungi. The adjustments are as follows: (1) population fluctuation and mature population members were estimated according to visible distribution and fruiting bodies, (2) a certain time period (rather than generation time) was used to calculate population change, (3) Possibly Extinct was added as an additional threatened category. The assessed data was based on the Checklist of Fungi in China database, fungal taxonomy literature, and expert consultation. Lastly, the Red List of China’s Biodiversity—Macrofungi was compiled via task assignment, data collection, assessed species verification, initial assessment, expert assessment, and red list compilation.

    Threatened species list of China’s macrofungi
    Yijian Yao, Jiangchun Wei, Wenying Zhuang, Tiezheng Wei, Yi Li, Xinli Wei, Hong Deng, Dongmei Liu, Lei Cai, Junsheng Li, Ke Wang, Haijun Wu, Binbin Li, Yonghui Wang, Xiaodan Wei, Hongmei Wu, Mingjun Zhao, Liu Yang, Jinhe Su, Xi Zhong
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  20-25.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019174
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    Threat status of non-lichenized macro-ascomycetes in China and its threatening factors
    Wenying Zhuang, Yi Li, Huandi Zheng, Zhaoqing Zeng, Xincun Wang
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  26-40.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019153
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    On May 22, 2018, the 25th International Day for Biological Diversity, a “China Biodiversity Red List—Macrofungi” was officially released by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The List included 870 species of non-lichenized macro-ascomycetes (as “macro-ascomycetes” below). A total of 24 species were listed as threatened including 1 Possibly Extinct, 6 Critically Endangered, 3 Endangered and 14 Vulnerable, accounting for 2.76% of the species assessed. Besides, 189 macro-ascomycetes were assessed as Least Concern and 616 as Data Deficient, accounting for 21.72% and 70.80%, respectively. The evaluation method, assessment process and results were presented herein; and the status of the China’s macro-ascomycetes, geographic distribution of the threatened species and major threatening factors were analyzed. The conservation actions and advices were also proposed. Fungal taxonomy is fundamental of and essential for evaluation of biodiversity red list of threatened species. In a relatively long period of time, field investigations and taxonomic studies are critical tasks and need continuous financial support from different sources. Future evaluations of threatened species of macrofungi in China rely on co-operations among taxonomists, workers in nature reserves, ecologists and amateurs.

    Assessment of the threatened status of macro-basidiomycetes in China
    Tiezheng Wei, Ke Wang, Xiaodan Yu, Yi Li, Haijun Wu, Hongmei Wu, Yonghui Wang, Xiaodan Wei, Binbin Li, Lan Jiang, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  41-53.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019164
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    A red list assessment of macrofungi was performed to determine the threatened status of known macro-basidiomycetes in China. Forty-five species were considered threatened, with species classified as either Possibly Extinct (PE), Critically Endangered (CR), Endangered (EN) or Vulnerable (VU). These species account for 0.72% of the 6,268 macro-basidiomycete species. More than one-third of the threatened species are edible or medicinal fungi, and most of them are uncultivable, meaning they only grow in the wild. The threatened basidiomycete species are mainly distributed across Southwest and Northeast China. The main threats to these species are shrinking and destruction of habitat caused by human activities, although excessive picking is a major threat for the edible and medicinal species. However, there were insufficient data for 4,251 macro-basidiomycetes species, 67.82% of all species, which suggests that this red list assessment is incomplete.

    Threatened categories assessment of lichens in China
    Xinli Wei, Hong Deng, Jiangchun Wei
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  54-65.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019154
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    Lichens are important components of macrofungi, and thus they are also main subjects in the Red List Assessment of Macrofungi in China. A total of 2,164 lichen species were evaluated here, including 2,145 ascomycete lichen species and 19 basidiomycete lichen species. These species were organized into 2 phyla, 9 classes, 34 orders, 92 families and 352 genera. The results showed that, of the 28 species identified as threatened, 3 species were Critically Endangered (CR), 7 species were Endangered (EN) and 18 species were Vulnerable (VU). These 28 represented 1.29% of all evaluated species, with 6 other species considered to be Near Threatened (NT) and 657 species assessed as Least Concern (LC). More than half the species, 1,473 (68.07%), were Data Deficient (DD) and could not be further evaluated due to lack of data. This highlights the severe lack of lichen research and the urgent need for lichen taxonomists in China. The extremely slow growth, weak adaptability to habitat degradation, particular sensitivity to air pollution, narrow distribution and small population size characteristic of lichens all contribute to the susceptible state of lichens that face habitat destruction caused by human activities. In addition, it is worth noting that some lichen species evaluated as Vulnerable here, have since been overexploited due to their edibility and well-known medicinal value. These species’ conservation status will be further aggravated if they continue to lack effective protection.

    Red list assessment of macrofungi in China: Challenges and measures
    Yi Li, Dongmei Liu, Ke Wang, Haijun Wu, Lei Cai, Lei Cai, Junsheng Li, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  66-73.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019178
    Abstract ( 462 )   HTML ( 3 )   PDF (716KB) ( 258 )   Save
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    On the International Day for Biological Diversity in 2018, the Red List of China’s Biodiversity—Macrofungi was officially released by the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Academy of Sciences. The List assessed the threatened status of 9,302 macro-fungal species. To better fit the evaluation of macrofungi, adjustments have been made to IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria. This study assessed the main problems in the assessment, which can be summarized as follows: (1) taxonomic problems and the lack of available Chinese scientific names for part of species, (2) insufficient geographic distribution, population, and ecological information for various investigated species, (3) difficulty in IUCN Red List Categories and Criteria usage, and (4) uncertainty and missing data for threatening factors of macrofungi. For the mentioned problems, we suggest: (1) an improvement in fungal taxonomic studies, utilizing Chinese scientific names for fungal species, (2) encouragement for continuous field monitoring of fungal resources, (3) utilization of species distribution models to improve the IUCN Red List assessment for fungal red-listing, and (4) the use of public platforms to encourage communication and interaction to access information and increase the social impact of the List.

    The use of Checklist of Fungi in China database in the red list assessment of macrofungi in China
    Ke Wang, Mingjun Zhao, Jinhe Su, Liu Yang, Hong Deng, Yonghui Wang, Haijun Wu, Yi Li, Hongmei Wu, Xiaodan Wei, Tiezheng Wei, Lei Cai, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  74-98.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019163
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    Taxonomic research has, to date, mainly been published in peer-based journals and books. Recently, with the development of emerging technology, document digitization has become a new trend and a variety of databases have been established to provide useful information for scientific research, government decisions, resource protection and utilization, and science communication. During the Red List Assessment of Macrofungi in China project, The Checklist of Fungi in China and Index Fungorum were used for data mining and programming methods to compile the Red List of China’s Biodiversity—Macrofungi. Both Latin and Chinese scientific names of assessed species were revised and corrected, providing a useful example for established database importance in taxonomic research, evaluation, and biological conservation.

    Incorporating species distribution model into the red list assessment and conservation of macrofungi: A case study with Ophiocordyceps sinensis
    Yi Li, Zhiyao Tang, Yujing Yan, Ke Wang, Lei Cai, Jinsheng He, Song Gu, Yijian Yao
    Biodiv Sci. 2020, 28 (1):  99-106.  doi:10.17520/biods.2019158
    Abstract ( 510 )   HTML ( 21 )   PDF (723KB) ( 308 )   Save
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    China is rich in macrofungal biodiversity. However, many species have been threatened in recent years by human activity and climate change. Red list assessment is the first step towards species conservation. To protect this group of fungi, the Ministry of Ecology and Environment of the People’s Republic of China and the Chinese Academy of Sciences launched the Red List Assessment of Macrofungi in China in 2016. A reasonable assessment largely relies on the sufficient information of species’ geographic information, population numbers and sizes and population dynamics, which is lacked in most of macrofungal species. It is therefore necessary to employ new approaches to find and utilize more information for the assessment. Among the assessed species, Ophiocordyceps sinensis, which is an edible and medicinal fungus endemic to the Tibetan Plateau and its surrounding regions, has relatively abundant information. This species gained attention worldwide due to its obvious economic value and its importance to local societies. A species distribution modeling has also been an important component of its red list assessment. Here, we call on a previous study that aimed to predict the current potential distribution and to project the future distribution of Ophiocordyceps sinensis, and then we discuss how this modeling method can be employed in red list assessments to predict the current potential distribution and the range shifts of other macrofungal species in response to climate change. Challenges of using the model and possible solutions are also discussed. The species distribution modeling method is considered to have great potential for red list assessments and the subsequent conservation of macrofungi.


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