Thursday 12 June 2014

Governor Laffan's Fern declared Extinct in the Wild.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature published its annual update of its Red List of Threatened Species on Thursday 12 June 2014, marking the 50th year of the list's existence, and revising the status of a number of Plant and Animal species from around the world. One Plant covered by this update is the Governor Laffan's Fern (Diplazium laffanianum), a large Fern native to caves and rocky crevices in northeast Bermuda and not seen in the wild since 1905, which has now been formally classed as Extinct in the Wild.

The Governor Laffan's Fern, Diplazium laffanianum. Don Lubin/FERNS et al. of NEW ENGLAND (U.S.A.) and Bermuda.

The term Extinct in the Wild means just that, there are no longer thought to be any members of this species living in the wild. There are twelve surviving mature plants at Henry Doorly Zoo in Omaha, Nebraska, from which several hundred smaller plants have been bred, these being currently housed at the Omaha Zoo Plant Laboratory, and the Department of Conservation Services and Plant Laboratory at the Department of Environmental Protection on Bermuda.

Map of Bermuda showing the approximate area of where Governor Laffan' Fern formerly grew in the wild. Google Maps.

See also...

Middle Triassic plant fossils have been collected from the Dolomites for at least a century and a half. These Triassic floras were dominated by Conifers, and were long thought to have lived in an arid climate, though recent palynological studies (studies of fossil pollen) have suggested a more diverse flora, indicative of a warm, humid climate. 

In November 2011 the Western Black Rhinoceros, Diceros bicornis longpipes, was formally declared extinct by the International Union...

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