New populations and a conservation assessment of Ecbolium hastatum Vollesen
Keywords:Conservation Assessment;, Ecbolium Hastatum;, Mozambique
Background: Ecbolium hastatum Vollesen is currently known from only three collections in southern Mozambique and has not been relocated since 1970.
Objectives: To document two new populations and a small range extension for this poorly known species, and to provide a much-needed assessment of its conservation status.
Method: The new populations were found by the first author (W.M.) while conducting floristic surveys of coastal thicket vegetation between Inhassoro and Vilanculos in December 2016, and during ongoing surveys by the second author (A.M.) of coastal thicket between Ponta de Ouro and Inhassoro. No voucher specimens were collected for the northern population, but photographs of key features were taken and compared with specimens in online herbaria. A voucher specimen was taken for the southern population.
Results: Two new populations and a northern range extension for E. hastatum are recorded. The species is assessed as Endangered EN B2ab(iii) according to International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Criteria. Only one of the five known localities for this species is protected.
Conclusion: The conservation assessment of this species highlights the importance of coastal
dune thicket for range-restricted species in southern Mozambique.