Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

The conservation status of West Indian palms (Arecaceae)

  • Scott Zona, Raúl Verdecia (a1), Angela Leiva Sánchez (a2), Carl E. Lewis (a3) and Mike Maunder (a3)...

The conservation status of 134 species, subspecies and varieties of West Indian palms (Arecaceae) is assessed and reviewed, based on field studies and current literature. We find that 90% of the palm taxa of the West Indies are endemic. Using the IUCN Red List categories one species is categorized as Extinct, 11 taxa as Critically Endangered, 19 as Endangered, and 21 as Vulnerable. Fifty-seven taxa are classified as Least Concern. Twenty-five taxa are Data Deficient, an indication that additional field studies are urgently needed. The 11 Critically Endangered taxa warrant immediate conservation action; some are currently the subject of ex situ and in situ conservation projects in the region’s botanical gardens. We recommend that preliminary conservation assessments be made of the 25 Data Deficient taxa so that conservation measures can be implemented for those facing imminent threats.

Corresponding author
*IUCN/SSC Palm Specialist Group, Center for Tropical Plant Conservation, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden, 11935 Old Cutler Road, Coral Gables, Miami, Florida 33156, USA. E-mail
Hide All

This paper contains supplementary material that can only be found online at

Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

P.-M. Agapow , O.R.P. Bininda-Emonds , K.A. Crandall , J.L. Gittleman , G.M. Mace , J.C. Marshall & A. Purvis (2004) The impact of species concept on biodiversity studies. Quarterly Review of Biology, 79, 161179.

F.W. Allendorf , R.F. Leary , P. Spruell & J.K. Wenburg (2001) The problems with hybrids: setting conservation guidelines. Trends in Ecology and Evolution, 16, 613622.

R. Bernal & G. Galeano (2006) Endangerment of Colombian palms (Arecaceae): change over 18 years. Botanical Journal of the Linnean Society, 151, 151163.

P.D.N. Herbert , E.H. Penton , J.M. Burns , D.H. Janzen & W. Hallwachs (2004) Ten species in one: DNA barcoding reveals cryptic species in the neotropical skipper butterfly Astraptes fulgerator. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (USA), 101, 1481214817.

J. Maschinski & J. Duquesnel (2007) Successful reintroductions of the endangered long-lived Sargent’s cherry palm, Pseudophoenix sargentii, in the Florida Keys. Biological Conservation, 134, 122129.

M. Maunder , B. Lyte , D. Dransfield & W. Baker (2001) The conservation value of botanic garden palm collections. Biological Conservation, 98, 259271.

K.C. Nixon & Q.D. Wheller (1990) An amplification of the phylogenetic species concept. Cladistics, 6, 211223.

J.C. Timyan & S.F. Reep (1994) Conservation status of Attalea crassispatha (Mart.) Burret, the rare and endemic oil palm of Haiti. Biological Conservation, 68, 1118.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

  • ISSN: 0030-6053
  • EISSN: 1365-3008
  • URL: /core/journals/oryx
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *


Type Description Title
Supplementary Material

ORYX: Zona et al. Supplementary table
Zona et al. Supplementary table

 PDF (59 KB)
59 KB


Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 1
Total number of PDF views: 2 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 137 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 28th June 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.