Original Research

The biomes of the eastern Cape with emphasis on their conservation

R. A. Lubke, D. A. Everard, Shirley Jackson
Bothalia | Vol 16, No 2 | a1099 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/abc.v16i2.1099 | © 1986 R. A. Lubke, D. A. Everard, Shirley Jackson | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 October 1986 | Published: 28 October 1986

About the author(s)

R. A. Lubke, Department of Plant Sciences. Rhodes University., South Africa
D. A. Everard, Department of Plant Sciences. Rhodes University, South Africa
Shirley Jackson, Department of Plant Sciences. Rhodes University, South Africa

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The four major phytochoria of southern Africa, the Cape. Tongoland-Pondoland. Karoo-Namib and Afromontane regions, converge in the complex transition zone of the eastern Cape. The area is rich in species and communities with a complex vegetation in which are represented all the major vegetation formations of southern Africa — Cape Fynbos. Cape Transitional Shrublands, Subtropical Thicket. Karoo, Savanna, Afromontane Forest, Grasslands and Littoral Strand Vegetation. Our results support previous findings that, although species-rich and of great diversity, the flora has fewer endemics (205 or 5,6%) than the Cape (73%) or Karoo-Namib (35%).  The communities with the largest proportion of endemics (30%), and threatened plants (18%) are those of the Subtropical Thicket. On the basis of these data and an index of conserv ation status, the Subtropical Thicket was determined to be highest on the priority list for conservation in the eastern Cape. Subtropical Thicket is being cleared at an increasing rate and is most vulnerable due to changing farming practice.


biomes. conservation; eastern Cape; endemics; endangered; subtropical thicket; vegetation types


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Crossref Citations

1. Grassland communities of the Amatola/Winterberg mountain region of the Eastern Cape, South Africa
D.B. Hoare, G.J. Bredenkamp
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doi: 10.1016/S0254-6299(15)30942-X