Habitat and Ecology
It has an altitudinal range from sea-level to 1,000 m. Typically it is associated with Fitzroya in the coastal range on poorly drained, thin gley soils. In most of its southern distribution it is associated with many species of the evergreen and Coige de Magallanes forest type, especially with Nothofagus betuloides, N. nitida, Tepualia stipularis and other species that are adapted to wet soils. There are large sub-populations in the Andes of Palena, Aysn and Magallanes where wetland mallines dominate.
Molecular Biology and Genetics
Barcode data: Pilgerodendron uviferum
Statistics of barcoding coverage: Pilgerodendron uviferum
Public Records: 2
Specimens with Barcodes: 3
Species With Barcodes: 1
IUCN Red List Assessment
Red List Category
Red List Criteria
- 2000Vulnerable (VU)
- 1998Vulnerable (V)
Argentina: About two thirds of the remaining Argentinian forests are within protected areas such as Parques Nacionales Nahuel Huapi, P.N. Los Glaciares and P.N. Los Alerces (Rovere et al. 2002). In Chile, small populations occur in many protected areas e.g. Puyehue and Torres del Paine. This species was placed on Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) in 1975, which has reduced international trade.
Pilgerodendron is a genus of conifer belonging to the cypress family Cupressaceae. It has only one species, Pilgerodendron uviferum, and is endemic to the Valdivian temperate rain forests and Magellanic subpolar forests of southern Chile and southwestern Argentina. It grows from 40 to 55°S in Tierra del Fuego, where it is the southernmost conifer in the world. It is a member of subfamily Callitroideae, a group of distinct southern hemisphere genera associated with the Antarctic flora.
It is very closely related to the New Zealand and New Caledonian genus Libocedrus, and many botanists treat it within this genus, as Libocedrus uvifera (D.Don) Pilg. It is also a taxonomical synonym for Libocedrus tetragona (Hooker). It is known locally as Ciprés de las Guaitecas, (after the Guaitecas Archipelago) and elsewhere by its scientific name, as Pilgerodendron. The genus is named after Robert Knud Friedrich Pilger.
It is a slow-growing, narrowly conical evergreen tree which grows from 2–20 m in height (with taller trees existing formerly), with a trunk up to 1.5 m diameter (reported to 3 m diameter in the past). The leaves are scale-like, arranged in decussate pairs. The leaves are all equal in size, giving the shoots a square cross-section (unlike the Libocedrus species, where pairs of larger leaves alternate with pairs of smaller leaves, giving a somewhat flattened shoot). The seed cones are 5–12 mm long and 4–6 mm broad, with four scales, two sterile basal scales and two fertile scales; each scale has a slender spine-like bract, and each fertile scale has two winged seeds 3–4 mm long. The pollen cones are 5–10 mm long and 2 mm broad, with 12–20 scales.
It is found in the evergreen coastal lowland forests along the Pacific coast of the ecoregion, in association the broadleaf evergreens Nothofagus betuloides and Drimys winteri. It is also found in open stands in sheltered bogs further inland, where it is often locally dominant, and ranges as far as the eastern slopes of the Andes in southwestern Argentina. At the northern end of its range it is found in association with Fitzroya cupressoides. It has been planted in the north coast of the Pacific Coast of the United States.
The wood is yellow-reddish, very decay resistant, it has a distinct spicy-resinous smell; it is very valuable, used for building construction. Due to over-exploitation, the species is now much scarcer than formerly, and is listed under CITES Appendix I; export of the wood is prohibited under this listing. The species is considered threatened by the World Conservation Monitoring Centre. Much of its original lowland habitat has been cleared.
- Kew World Checklist of Selected Plant Families
- Farjon, A. (2005). Monograph of Cupressaceae and Sciadopitys. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. ISBN 1-84246-068-4
- Flora Chilena: Pilgerodendron uviferum
- Eckenwalder, J. E. (1976). Re-evaluation of Cupressaceae and Taxodiaceae: a proposed merger. Madroño 23 (5): 237-256.
- Pilgerodendron uviferum
- Chilebosque: Pilgerodendron uviferum
- "Nothofagus antarctica in Washington Park Arboretum". Seattle Government. Retrieved 2009-06-27.
- Conifer Specialist Group (2000). Pilgerodendron uviferum. 2006. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN 2006. www.iucnredlist.org. Retrieved on 5 May 2006. Listed as Vulnerable (VU A2cd v2.3)
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