Copiapoa and their environment

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All the information and photos in cactus art file are now available also in the new the Enciclopedia of Cacti. We hope you find this new site informative and useful. It is a solitary, or slowly offsetting, globular to columnar cactus. It is an extremely variable species with many forms, sometimes with long spines or others spineless like Ritter's "tenebrosas". Stems: Up to 1.

The white coloration is a waxy coating presumably to prevent dessication in it's extremely dry environment. In cultivation the white waxy bloom is often not produced, revealing a brownish epidermis. Ribs: broad, obtuse; Central spines: 1 or 2 up to long, terete, black; Radial spines: 0 to 7 Flowers: Yellow funnelform, 1. Fruit: 1. Other chapters cover the different markets for cacti and products that are made from them.

Includes alphabetic listing of Cactaceae names in current usage; reference data; and names of accepted taxa listed by countries. Skip to content. Add to Wishlist. Product added!

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Although little variation in sequence data was observed, the observed variation supports the species boundaries of Copiapoa gigantea and C. Below the species level, only C. The amount of sequence variation observed between the taxa included in this study is comparable for other groups of Copiapoa species that have distribution ranges which occur in close proximity to each other, such as the taxa of Copiopoa section Echinopoa or C.

In general, limited genetic diversity in Cactaceae was also observed in other studies using chloroplast sequence data e. Majure et al. As no consistent, supported evidence of LD between pairwise loci was found Supplementary data Table 2 , we assume no linkage between markers. Significant deviation from HWE in loci can indicate null alleles, genotyping errors, recent admixture, or unrepresentative nonrandom sampling.

Assuming deviations are due to underrepresentation of true population genetic diversity, and because analyses ran excluding loci AaD9 and mEgR17 yielded similar results only with less predictive power, all five loci were kept for the final analyses. For future studies it is advisable to develop additional SSR markers de novo using next-generation sequencing, as recently proved successful for Echinopsis chiloensis Ossa et al.

Allelic diversity may be similar in the four taxa because of occasional historical gene flow between them resulting in hybrids , or as a result of their recent speciation Larridon et al. Allelic diversity AR, A e of Copiapoa cinerea subsp. Nonetheless, sampling reflects the natural state since C. Compared with a population genetic study of Astrophytum asterias using some of the same microsatellite markers and similar sample size per population Terry et al.

Comparing values in Table 1 with those obtained for wild populations of Mammillaria huitzilopochtli and M.

Copiapoa in Their Environment. Chanaral to El Cobre.

F IS was significantly greater than zero Table 1 in all populations, suggesting a level of inbreeding within each of the four studied taxa. This detected inbreeding could be due to: 1 a low number of individuals per taxon leading to a higher level of homozygosity; or 2 reproductive biology. Pairwise F ST values between the populations are significant, so as to not support random mating, but low, indicating past gene flow among the different taxa studied Table 2.

Although slightly higher F ST values were recorded, we expected Copiapoa gigantea to have a higher degree of genetic differentiation and hence fixation compared to the subspecies of C. The lower than expected fixation may be due to hybridisation events that result in gene flow and limit fixation. The latter is supported by reports of hybrids between C.

Larridon et al. Another reason for the lack of concordance between the differentiation estimates based on chloroplast markers Larridon et al.

Evolutionary Dynamics in the Fascinating Cactus Genus Copiapoa

The seeds may be dispersed more locally i. In contrast, pollen might be travelling over longer distances due to pollinator's behaviour i. More research is needed on the ecology of these species and their interaction with their pollinators and seed dispersers. Dividing the data in two species, Copiapoa gigantea and C.

Dividing the dataset first into two species and then into four taxa is also significant F SC. We cannot exclude that limited sampling influenced these results. Although genetic structure of the studied loci does not follow our predefined species Copiapoa gigantea and C. It is likely that structure analysis results will improve with a larger sampling of individuals and markers since the taxa may have more private alleles that were not sampled in this study. Another explanation for the lack of genetic structure is a high level of past gene flow between the populations of the four taxa.

This is in contrast with structure analysis results found for Coryphantha robustispina Schott ex Engelm. DAPC results Fig. The latter indicates once more that C. DAPC; Fig.

Copiapoa Habitat - Chile 2019

Genetic differentiation between the subspecies of C. However, the taxa are clearly distinct morphologically Fig. All studied taxa occupy distinct areas among the high topographic complexity along the coastal range of the Chilean Atacama Desert. For example, C. Phylogenetic analyses of the genus revealed that although many Copiapoa species occur sympatrically, sister taxa are segregated in geographic space Larridon et al. Similarly to other Chilean cacti i. Eriosyce Phil. Neoporteria Helmut Walter , taxonomic divergence within Copiapoa subsection Cinerei may have occurred through isolation by distance favoured by the high topographic complexity in the coastal zone of the Atacama Desert Guerrero et al.

Overlap at distributional limits may likewise be part of the mechanism of diversification since new taxa could have originated or are still evolving from hybridisation events. Two hypotheses could be tested in future studies: 1 speciation through spatial isolation and posterior secondary contact, and 2 speciation through hybridisation and posterior migration. Correct species delimitation matters for conservation because we need to know what the units for conservation are, generally at the species level, to optimally invest resources in the species or area of interest.


Our analyses suggest that the former assessment might underestimate the real extinction risk of C. Our results provide support for the species boundaries of C. This highlights the need to advance taxonomic re-evaluation of genera and species with unclear evolutionary relationships and or delimitation, where species numbers might be inflated Isaac et al. We have updated the conservation assessments in the Taxonomic Treatment below. Assessing levels of hybridisation, and testing whether hybrids have equal fitness compared to their parental populations can provide further insights.

Implementation of conservation measures such as increased control of illegal harvesting and habitat conservation management e.

Copiapoa cinerea

For Copiapoa species in general, there is an urgent need for more ecological data, more specifically concerning the reproductive interaction of the taxa with their pollinators and seed dispersers to make inferences on potential pollen and seed dispersal-mediated gene flow and its influence on taxon limits. The two species can easily be distinguished from each other morphologically, because the stems of C. The three subspecies of C.

Descriptions, identification keys to the species and subspecies, and nomenclature have been adapted from H. Walter, Flora de Chile , Cactaceae, Vol. Only the most commonly used synonyms are provided. Plants forming loose groups or solitary; apical wool grey. Copiapoa gigantea Backeb.

Backeberg : Copiapoa haseltoniana Backeb. Backeberg : 33 ; Copiapoa cinerea subsp.