Global survey of ex situ maple collections
In 2009, BGCI and FFI jointly published The Red List of Maples under the partnership of the Global Trees Campaign. The report called for action to ensure that the 26 taxa listed in the report as Critically Endangered or Endangered were conserved. The first stage of this action is to establish which of these very threatened taxa are held in ex situ collections around the world by carrying out a global survey.
The survey identified 4,405 maple records from 228 institutions in 37 countries. Of the 4,405 records included in the analysis, just 223 records (5%) of the most threatened maples (CR and EN) were identified.
The 223 records represent 16 of the 26 most threatened (CR and EN) maples.
With 16 of the most threatened taxa present in ex situ collections to some extent, 3 CR taxa and 7 EN taxa are currently unknown to horticulture.
Therefore if the wild populations disappear, then there are no secure ex situ collections available to return the species to the wild or prevent the taxa from becoming extinct. Of the 16 (CR or EN) taxa found in collections, 5 are only found in one or two collections and therefore should still be considered a high priority for new ex situ collections. These species are listed in the report.
The report concludes by making a call for further information to fill gaps in our knowledge of collections and by making a series of recommendations based on the results of the survey including: the strengthening of existing ex situ collections, establishing new collections, implementing restoration and reintroduction activities, involving local communities and organisation in conservation activities, developing public awareness programmes and enhancing BGCI’s PlantSearch database. The report also calls for further information to fill gaps in our knowledge of ex situ collections.
Download the Global Survey of Ex situ Maple Collections