Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/8756
Appears in Collections:Biological and Environmental Sciences Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: Rapid altitudinal migration of mountain plants in Taiwan and its implications for high altitude biodiversity
Authors: Jump, Alistair
Huang, Tsurng-Juhn
Chou, Chang-Hung
Contact Email: a.s.jump@stir.ac.uk
Issue Date: Mar-2012
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell
Citation: Jump A, Huang T & Chou C (2012) Rapid altitudinal migration of mountain plants in Taiwan and its implications for high altitude biodiversity, Ecography, 35 (3), pp. 204-210.
Abstract: Mountain systems throughout the globe are characterized by high levels of species richness and species endemism. Biodiversity, however, is not distributed evenly with altitude, but often declines from mid to high altitudes. Conversely, endemic species may be over-represented at high altitudes. Upward elevational range shifts of mountain species have been reported in response to ongoing changes in climate, yet the reports are dominated by studies on woody species and mountains at high latitudes. We investigated spatial and temporal changes in the mountain biodiversity in the subtropical island of Taiwan, based on historical survey and resurvey data during the period 1906–2006. We found that upper altitudinal limits of mountain plant distributions have risen by ca 3.6 m yr−1 during the last century, in parallel with rising temperatures in the region. Although species, genus, and family richness decline with altitude, ca 55% of species at the highest altitudes are endemic to the island. Given the steep decline in land area with increasing elevation, these high altitude areas are disproportionately important for plant biodiversity when richness and endemism are standardized by available land area. We argue that the distributional shift that we report, in combination with the altitudinal distribution of plant diversity, is likely to pose a major threat to high mountain species of this highly biodiverse island, a threat that is becoming increasingly evident for high mountain plants throughout the globe.
Type: Journal Article
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1893/8756
DOI Link: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0587.2011.06984.x
Rights: The publisher does not allow this work to be made publicly available in this Repository. Please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study.
Affiliation: Biological and Environmental Sciences
China Medical University (Taiwan)
China Medical University (Taiwan)

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