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An estimate of the number of tropical tree species

Slik, J.W. Ferry; Arroyo-Rodríguez, Víctor; Aiba, Shin-Ichiro; Alvarez-Loayza, Patricia; Alves, Luciana F.; Field, Richard

Authors

J.W. Ferry Slik

Víctor Arroyo-Rodríguez

Shin-Ichiro Aiba

Patricia Alvarez-Loayza

Luciana F. Alves



Abstract

The high species richness of tropical forests has long been recognized, yet there remains substantial uncertainty regarding the actual number of tropical tree species. Using a pantropical tree inventory database from closed canopy forests, consisting of 657,630 trees belonging to 11,371 species, we use a fitted value of Fisher’s alpha and an approximate pantropical stem total to estimate the minimum number of tropical forest tree species to fall between ∼40,000 and ∼53,000, i.e. at the high end of previous estimates. Contrary to common assumption, the Indo-Pacific region was found to be as species-rich as the Neotropics, with both regions having a minimum of ∼19,000–25,000 tree species. Continental Africa is relatively depauperate with a minimum of ∼4,500–6,000 tree species. Very few species are shared among the African, American, and the Indo-Pacific regions. We provide a methodological framework for estimating species richness in trees that may help refine species richness estimates of tree-dependent taxa.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jun 1, 2015
Journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Print ISSN 0027-8424
Electronic ISSN 1091-6490
Publisher National Academy of Sciences
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 112
Issue 24
APA6 Citation Slik, J. F., Arroyo-Rodríguez, V., Aiba, S., Alvarez-Loayza, P., Alves, L. F., & Field, R. (2015). An estimate of the number of tropical tree species. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 112(24), https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1423147112
DOI https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1423147112
Publisher URL http://www.pnas.org/content/112/33/E4628.short
Related Public URLs http://www.pnas.org/content/112/24/7472
Copyright Statement Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingh.../end_user_agreement.pdf
Additional Information Not all authors listed.

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Copyright Statement
Copyright information regarding this work can be found at the following address: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/end_user_agreement.pdf





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