Taxonomy

Pichonia lecomtei (Guillaumin) T.D.Penn.
endemique
protegee
UICN

Synonyms

Lucuma lecomtei GuillauminRhamnoluma lecomtei (Guillaumin) Aubrév.

Red List Status -

Endangered (EN) , assessed in 10/05/2016

Protected species -

in Southern Province

Pichonia lecomtei is an endemic shrub or small tree up to 6 m tall, found in southern Grande Terre in New Caledonia. This species is known from two localities (Tontouta and Dumbéa). Pichonia lecomtei occurs in shrubland on an ultramafic substrate at an altitudinal range 50-280 m asl. Recurrent bushfires and on-going mining activities are the main identified threats. Unprotected species by legislation, Pichonia lecomtei is found in one protected area (Réserve naturelle de la Haute-Dumbéa). Its area of occupancy (AOO) and area of occurrence (EOO) are respectively estimated to 52 km² and 279 km² while the number of locations is estimated to be three (Dumbéa, lower part of Tontouta, northern branch of Tontouta). Pichonia lecomtei is therefore considered Endangered (EN) according to criteria B1ab(i,ii,iii,iv,v)+B2ab(i,ii,iii,iv,v).

Geographical area


Pichonia lecomtei is found in southern Grande Terre in New Caledonia. This species is known from two localities (Tontouta and Dumbéa) and from one old herbarirum specimen (1916) from an imprecise locality in Yaté. Recent botanical inventories of reserves near Yaté have not relocated the species and it is presumed that this species is not present anymore in this locality.

Population


Population size is unknown, however this species is abundant in Tontouta and sporadically observed in Dumbéa .

Habitat


Pichonia lecomtei occurs in shrubland on an ultramafic substrate at an altitudinal range 50-280 m asl.

Threats


Recurrent bushfires and on-going mining activities in Tontouta and Dumbéa contribute to the loss and degradation of habitat, especially to erosion. Uncontrolled fires sweep across lowlands of New Caledonia each year, especially during the dry season (an average of 20,000 ha of land is burnt each year).New Caledonia contains 20-30% of the world’s nickel resources. Intense mining activities since the late 19th century has generated soil erosion (1.2% of bare ground mapped by SPOT5 in 2007). Based on the distribution of metal-rich soils and site accessibility, these threats are predictable and planned (rise in nickel production from 60,000 to 200,000 tonnes per year between 2013 and 2015).

Conservation


Unprotected species by legislation, Pichonia lecomtei is found in one protected area (Parc Provincial de la Haute-Dumbéa). It is recommended to assess the number of individuals in both localities. This species would benefit from ex-situ conservation actions.

Bibliography


Swenson U. and Muzinger J. 2012. Revision of Pichonia (Sapotaceae) in New Caledonia. Australian Systematic Botany(25) , p.31-48.

Endemia.nc 2016. Faune et Flore de Nouvelle-Calédonie.

Morat, P.; Jaffré, T.; Tronchet, F.; Munzinger, J.; Pillon, Y.; Veillon, J.-M. and Chalopin, M. 2012. Le référentiel taxonomique Florical et les caractéristiques de la flore vasculaire indigène de la Nouvelle-Calédonie [The taxonomic database « FLORICAL » and characteristics of the indigenous flora of New Caledonia]. Adansonia sér 3(34) , p.177-219.

Experts


Assessor(s): Cazé, H., Garnier, D., Goxe, J., Héquet, V., McCoy, S.

Reviewer(s): Gâteblé, G.

Contributor(s): Munzinger, J., Swenson, U.

Facilitator(s): Maura, J., Bernard-Musmann, M.


Geographical distribution