New plant named to honor the peace-making efforts of the Colombian President

January 06, 2017

Named to honour the peace-making efforts of the Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos, recently awarded with the Nobel Peace Prize, a new species of the sunflower family genus Espeletia is described from the Páramo de Presidente. The study was published in the open access journal PhytoKeys.

Located 28 km south from the closest city Chitagá, the Colombian Páramo de Presidente has been considered unsafe for decades due to the country's turbulent history. Like in many dangerous areas around Colombia, the flora of this páramo has not been studied well yet.

Closed to researchers for decades, the peace agreement opened this and other places for fruitful botanical explorations during the post-conflict times in Colombia. The new species was collected during an expedition of the authors in 2009, in which they met with left-wing armed members.

"Thanks to the President of Colombia, Juan Manuel Santos Calderón, and his persistent efforts to achieve peace with the guerillas FARC in Colombia, after 52 years of conflict, we are now able to explore previously unreachable areas," comments the lead author, Mauricio Diazgranados, research leader at Kew Gardens, Ardingly, UK.

"Naming our species to honour his peace efforts, we hope that this publication will further inspire the President to continue with more actions for the preservation of Colombian biodiversity."

The new species is endemic to Colombia and is only known from the Páramo de Presidente, at elevations of 3400-3600 m. Although a large population of several hundreds of individuals growing in the grasslands of the páramo was observed, this particular area is not under any sort of protection, and there are signs of grazing activity. In addition, the proximity of extensive potato plantations suggests that the species is probably Critically Endangered.
-end-
Original Source:

Diazgranados M, Sánchez LR (2017) Espeletia praesidentis, a new species of Espeletiinae (Millerieae, Asteraceae) from northeastern Colombia. PhytoKeys 76: 1-12. https://doi.org/10.3897/phytokeys.76.11220

Pensoft Publishers

Related Species Articles from Brightsurf:

A new species of spider
During a research stay in the highlands of Colombia conducted as part of her doctorate, Charlotte Hopfe, PhD student at the University of Bayreuth, has discovered and zoologically described a new species of spider.

Two new species of parasite discovered in crabs -- discovery will help prevent infection of other marine species
Two new species of parasite, previously unknown to science, have been discovered in crabs in Swansea Bay, Wales, during a study on disease in the Celtic and Irish Seas.

Marine species are outpacing terrestrial species in the race against global warming
Global warming is causing species to search for more temperate environments in which to migrate to, but it is marine species -- according to the latest results of a Franco-American study mainly involving scientists from the CNRS, Ifremer, the Université Toulouse III-Paul Sabatier and the University of Picardy Jules Verne -- that are leading the way by moving up to six times faster towards the poles than their terrestrial congeners.

Directed species loss from species-rich forests strongly decreases productivity
At high species richness, directed loss, but not random loss, of tree species strongly decreases forest productivity.

What is an endangered species?
What makes for an endangered species classification isn't always obvious.

One species, many origins
In a paper published in Nature Ecology and Evolution, a group of researchers argue that our evolutionary past must be understood as the outcome of dynamic changes in connectivity, or gene flow, between early humans scattered across Africa.

Species on the move
A total of 55 animal species in the UK have been displaced from their natural ranges or enabled to arrive for the first time on UK shores because of climate change over the last 10 years (2008-2018) -- as revealed in a new study published today by scientists at international conservation charity ZSL (Zoological Society of London).

Chasing species' 'intactness'
In an effort to better protect the world's last ecologically intact ecosystems, researchers developed a new metric called 'The Last of the Wild in Each Ecoregion' (LWE), which aimed to quantify the most intact parts of each ecoregion.

How do species adapt to their surroundings?
Several fish species can change sex as needed. Other species adapt to their surroundings by living long lives -- or by living shorter lives and having lots of offspring.

Five new frog species from Madagascar
Scientists at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universitaet in Munich and the Bavarian State Collection of Zoology have named five new species of frogs found across the island of Madagascar.

Read More: Species News and Species Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.