Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

2 new plants discovered in Spain

16.02.2011
Just when everyone thought that almost every plant species on the Iberian Peninsula had been discovered, Spanish researchers have discovered Taraxacum decastroi and Taraxacum lacianense, two dandelions from the Pyrenees and the Cordillera Cantábrica mountain range, respectively. This finding confirms Spain's privileged position as a hotbed of biodiversity.

"It's hard to find new species now in Spain. It depends on the complexity of the group of plants you study", Antonio Galán de Mera, lead author of the study and a researcher in the Department of Biology (Botany) at the San Pablo-CEU University in Madrid, tells SINC.


This is one of the new plants of the Taraxacum genus. Credit: Galán de Mera

According to the study, which has been published in Annales Botanici Fennici, it has been no easy task to identify these two new plants. "We had to compare them with numerous examples from Europe (above all in Spain and Portugal), which were lent to us from the collections of other colleagues", says Galán de Mera.

Taraxacum decastroi and Taraxacum lacianense are plants with long leaves and little pollen, because they reproduce by means of seeds without fertilisation. They also have "fairly characteristic" fruits with little ornamentation, "which differentiates them from other species in the Peninsula", the scientist adds.

T. decastroi, which takes its name from the naturalist Emilio de Castro y Pérez de Castro, is a plant from the Pyrenees fir forests of Lérida, while T. lacianense, first spotted by José Alfredo Vicente Orellana, grows in the birch woods of the Montes de León mountains, specifically in the area of Laciana. Both plants live in moist environments and face certain threats.

"Taraxacum lacianense lives in environments that are very vulnerable to becoming dried out. In addition, the bogland in which it grows is in the birch woods of the Montes de León, which are seriously threatened by open cast coal mining", the biologist explains.

New plants, greater biodiversity

The description of Taraxacum decastroi and Taraxacum lacianense represent two new additions to the floral biodiversity of the Iberian Peninsula, and they go to join more than 50 other species within the Taraxacum genus on the Iberian Peninsula. Both species are related to Taraxacum reophilum of the Alps.

In Spain, "it is impossible to pinpoint" the number of new plants that still remain to be discovered "although genus studies can always throw up surprises", says the researcher, who is currently studying another "probable" new species in the province of Madrid related with a forest group. The team has also found another in Portugal, Segovia and Asturias.

The two new species will be included in the chapter on the Taraxacum genus in the work Flora Ibérica, which has been published by the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC) since 1986. The Botany Department of the San Pablo-CEU University collaborates on this initiative by means of its herbarium, which conserves plants from the Iberian Peninsula and South America.

References

Galán de Mera, Antonio; Vicente Orellana, José Alfredo. "Taraxacum decastroi and T-lacianense (Asteraceae), two new species from the Iberian Peninsula". Annales Botanici Fennici 47(4): 307-311, 2010.

SINC | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.plataformasinc.es

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht Individual Receptors Caught at Work
19.10.2017 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht Rapid environmental change makes species more vulnerable to extinction
19.10.2017 | Universität Zürich

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Neutron star merger directly observed for the first time

University of Maryland researchers contribute to historic detection of gravitational waves and light created by event

On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...

Im Focus: Breaking: the first light from two neutron stars merging

Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.

Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....

Im Focus: Smart sensors for efficient processes

Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).

When quality testing uses time-consuming destructive test methods, it can result in enormous costs due to damaging or destroying the products. And given that...

Im Focus: Cold molecules on collision course

Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.

How do chemical reactions proceed at extremely low temperatures? The answer requires the investigation of molecular samples that are cold, dense, and slow at...

Im Focus: Shrinking the proton again!

Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.

It was one of the breakthroughs of the year 2010: Laser spectroscopy of muonic hydrogen resulted in a value for the proton charge radius that was significantly...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

ASEAN Member States discuss the future role of renewable energy

17.10.2017 | Event News

World Health Summit 2017: International experts set the course for the future of Global Health

10.10.2017 | Event News

Climate Engineering Conference 2017 Opens in Berlin

10.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Physics boosts artificial intelligence methods

19.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

NASA team finds noxious ice cloud on saturn's moon titan

19.10.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

New procedure enables cultivation of human brain sections in the petri dish

19.10.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>