Open Access An inventory of the vascular plants and bryophytes of Gavdopoula island (S Aegean, Greece) and its phytogeographical significance

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Abstract:

Gavdopoula is an island of 177.5 ha in the S Aegean, near the southeasternmost point of Europe. Based on field excursions in 1998/99 and 2009/10, we provide an annotated floristic catalogue of 186 vascular plant and 13 bryophyte taxa, with a full record of herbarium specimens and field observations, being the first botanical inventory of the island. Species richness in relation to island area is, as shown in a diagram, according to expectations. Among the vascular plants there are six regional ('Cretan area') endemics. The Saharo-Arabian-S Mediterranean phytogeographical element is well represented, with several species confined in Greece or even in Europe to the small islands south of Crete. Of these, Atriplex mollis occurs in Europe only on Gavdopoula. The moss Entosthodon commutatus has not previously been recorded from the E Mediterranean. The vegetation is controlled chiefly by the dry Mediterranean climate, calcareous shallow soils, sea spray and seasonal grazing. It consists of halo-nitrophytic and Pistacia lentiscus scrub, two types of phrygana, small-scale ephemeral pastures with winter-annuals on red-loamy soils, and sea-cliff vegetation. The new combination, Lysimachia arvensis var. caerulea, is published.

Keywords: CRETE; FLORA; GAVDOS; ISLET; MEDITERRANEAN; PHYTOGEOGRAPHY; SPECIES-AREA RELATION; VEGETATION

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.3372/wi.41.41121

Publication date: June 1, 2011

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  • Willdenowia is an international peer-reviewed journal publishing original research papers in English from the entire fields of plant, algal and fungal systematics, covering the evolution, taxonomy and nomenclature of these organisms as well as related fields such as floristics and plant geography. Three issues appear each year (in April, August and December) in an open-access online edition and a print edition. Individual papers may be published in the online edition as fast-track articles ahead of inclusion in these issues.

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