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Article
Published: 2022-08-11

Taxonomic Enumeration of ferns and lycophytes from Popa, Mandalay Region in Myanmar

The Kochi Prefectural Makino Botanical Garden, Kochi, Japan
Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yunnan, China
Center for Integrative Conservation, Xishuangbanna Tropical Botanical Garden, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Yunnan, China
arid region biodiversity historical records pteridophytes species occurrence

Abstract

In Myanmar, most of the botanical surveys and plant inventories available have been based on a short period of intensive collecting activities in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Previous data show strong biases in effort across plant groups, with ferns and lycophytes rather poorly covered. For example, naturalists and plant hunters had given little attention to the Mt. Popa, Kyaukpadaung Township, Mandalay Region. Mt. Popa, an extinct volcano, is distinct for its unique ecosystem that differs strongly from the surrounding arid region of Central Dry Zone of Myanmar. To contribute to the flora documentation in Myanmar and to better understand the species distribution of ferns and lycophytes in Southeast Asia, we compiled a critical checklist of ferns and lycophytes of Mt. Popa and the surrounding area, based on records documented in the literature and recent surveys. In this enumeration, we list 50 species belonging to 14 families and 29 genera for the Popa region, contributing about 8% of the total ferns and lycophytes recorded in Myanmar. Considering the size of the study area, i.e., 0.02% of the total land area of Myanmar, the region is rich in ferns and lycophytes. We report 21 fern and lycophyte species as the first records for Popa region and the first certain record of Ophioglossum reticulatum in Myanmar. This baseline data from a region previously poorly known for ferns and lycophytes significantly contributes to the upcoming “Flora of Myanmar”.

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