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Abstract Detail

Conservation Biology

Buckley, Liberty [1], Brown, Amanda [1], Padgett, Jessica [1], Taylor-Bennetts, Stacy [1].

Population Dynamics of a Rare Species, Pediomelum piedmontanum (Fabaceae).

This study investigated the population dynamics of Pediomelum piedmontanum, the “Dixie Mt. Breadroot”, a recently discovered species that features only three known populations in disturbed areas in the lower piedmont of Georgia and South Carolina. A unique population, “Burk’s Mt”, is located in a rare serpentine pocket in Georgia, whereas in South Carolina, the two known populations, “Cemetery” and “Kennerly”, are found on phyllite substrates. The population parameters investigated included population size, seedling growth and survivability. Fitness, the average number of inflorescences/plant and percent seed viability, was also assessed by randomly tagging 20 plants. For seed viability, tetrazolium chloride was applied to 50 seeds/population for 24hrs. The Kennerly population was the greatest in size (~ 600 plants) but displayed the lowest fitness (ave. 9 inflorescences/plant). Also, seed viability was extremely low, 5% at Kennerly, compared to 95% seed viability at Burk’s Mt. The Cemetery population was also large (~ 400 plants) with low fitness (ave. 12 inflorescences/plant). The Burk’s Mt. population was the smallest in size (~150 plants), but displayed the greatest fitness (ave. 22 inflorescences/plant). These results suggest an inverse relationship between population size and fitness. Seedling growth was non-significant over a month with moderate survivability (65%). Since this species is perennial with slow seedling growth and low percentages of seed viability in the phyllite populations, we speculate that these larger populations are reproducing mostly by vegetative propagation, which generates lower genetic variability and fitness. Thus, this could increase the susceptibility of this species to predation and disease and possible extinction.

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1 - Augusta University, Biological Sciences, 2500 Walton Way, Augusta, GA, 30904, USA

Dixie MT. Breadroot

Presentation Type: Poster
Session: P, Conservation Biology Posters
Location: Exhibit Hall/Savannah International Trade and Convention Center
Date: Monday, August 1st, 2016
Time: 5:30 PM This poster will be presented at 5:30 pm. The Poster Session runs from 5:30 pm to 7:00 pm. Posters with odd poster numbers are presented at 5:30 pm, and posters with even poster numbers are presented at 6:15 pm.
Number: PCB003
Abstract ID:214
Candidate for Awards:None

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