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ENDEMISM

Definition of an endemic species: a species which is only found in a given region or location and nowhere else in the world. This definition requires that the region that the species is endemic to, be defined, such as a “site endemic” (e.g. just found on Mount Celaque),6 a “national endemic” (e.g. found only in Honduras), a “geographical range endemic” (e.g. found in the Himalayan region, which however covers several Himalayan countries and therefore is not a national endemic), or a political region endemic (e.g. found in countries of Central America). Taken to an extreme, a cosmopolite species is still endemic to Earth! 

From these examples it is clear that the use of the mere term endemic as such is rather vague and without too much value by itself.  National and political region endemism of large countries or regions has far less significance than endemism of small countries and very limited range endemism. An endemic species for Brazil (Sorry guys), which covers half the territory of South Ameriica, just is not as special as a the endemic hummingbird that lives in just one valley in Honduras. In the context of this study, we only take into consideration nationally endemic species.  There is a thorough justification for that.  Conservation can only be carried out under national legislation, and national endemics fully depend on the effort and success of conservation in the country where it lives.  For smaller countries, the concept of national endemism automatically means that nationally endemic species have very limited ranges and thus, by the IUCN criteria must always be considered to be at least vulnerable. 

It must be noted, that the concept of endemism very much depends on the knowledge of the geographical range of a species.  Usually, a newly discovered species has only been found in a limited site, and with the knowledge of that moment, it should be considered a site and national endemic.  However, this only lasts until the moment that someone discovers it in another country. At that moment its original status of national endemism will be lost.  This is bound to be the case for many endemic organisms which are difficult to be noticed or recognised, such as species from very large and complex groups (plants, arthropods) or small organisms.  Endemic status of well studied, conspicuous taxa with manageable numbers of species (birds, mammals, herpetofauna, icthyofauna), tend to be more stable. 

This page  is part of our web-book on Biodiversity Conservation. For organized reading go to our on-line Table of Content, or download our book in pdf format.

 

NATURE WORLDWIDE is the official website of the World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE. It is an integrated network of web sites dealing with different topics on nature, nature conservation and natural resources management. Read here why we created Nature Worldwide. Our Methodology explains how we produced our information. Our Site Map helps you find your way in the website. We made this website out of passion for conservation. We spent our own salaries and free time to gather the information and publish it on these websites, in total valuing hundreds of thousands of dollars of professional time. Nobody pays us to do this. We simply want to contribute to conservation. If you appreciate our work, PLEASE visit our site Adopt A Ranger and see how you can make a difference for conservation most effectively: By paying one day of the salary of a ranger, you will make a difference in conserving the lives of thousands of birds, other critters and entire forests. Enjoy!

NATURE DU MONDE est le site Web officiel du World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE, C'est une collection intégrée de sites web qui traitent avec des sujets différents sur nature, conservation de la nature et gestion des ressources naturelles. Lisez ici pourquoi nous avons créé Nature de Monde. Notre Methodologie explique comme nous avons produit nos renseignements. Notre Site Map vous aide trouver votre entrée dans le site web. Beaucoup de plaisir!

NATURALEZA DEL MUNDO es la página Web oficial del World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE, Es una red de páginas Web tratando de temas diferentes relacionados a la naturaleza, la conservación el manejo de recursos naturales, parques nacionales y áreas protegidas. Lea aqui porqué hicimos Naturaleza del Mundo. Nuestra Methodología explica como produjimos la información. Nuestro Mapa del sitio le ayuda encontrar su información en nuestra página web. Disfrute! 

NATUREZA DO MUNDO é o Web site oficial do World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE, Es uma red de páginas Web tratando de temas diferentes relacionados à natureza, la conservação el manejo de recursos naturaleiss, parques nacionais y áreas protegidas. Lea aqui porqué creamos Natureza do Mundo. Nossa Methodología explica como produjimos a informação. Nosso Mapa do sitio le ayuda encontrar sua informação no web site. Desfrute!

NATUR DER GANZEN WELT ist, die offiziellen Website der World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE. Es ist ein einheitliches Netzwerk von Web Sites, über Themen wie Natur, Natur-Schutz und natürlichem Ressourcen Quellen Hege. Lesen Sie hier warum wir Natur der ganzen Welt gemacht haben. Un

sere Verfahrensweise erklärt, wie wir unsere Informationen produziert würde. Unsere Site Map  hilft Ihnen Ihren Weg im Website zu finden. Viel Spaß!

NATUUR UIT ALLE STREKEN is, de officiële Website van het World Institute for Conservation and Environment, WICE. Het is een geïntegreerd Netwerk van websites, over Natuur, Natuurbescherming en het beheer van natuurlijke hulpbronnen. Lesen Sie hier warum wir Natuur uit alle Streken gemacht haben. Onze pagina Methode legt uit, hoe we onze informatie vergaarden. Onze Site Map helpt u op weg door onze website. 

WICE is a worldwide non-government non-profit organization that contributes to the conservation of nature. While it works on a many issues related to the conservation of nature and the protection of the environment, it is particularly committed to the conservation of national parks and other protected areas.

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