NEWS 2022

Modeling of the Potential Geographical Distribution of Three Fritillaria Species Under Climate Change

Ruiping JIANG, Meng ZOU, Yu QIN, Guodong TAN, Sipei HUANG, Huige QUAN, Jiayu ZHOU, Hai LIAO
Frontiers in Plant Science 2022
School of Life Sciences and Engineering, Southwest Jiaotong University, Chengdu, China

Jiang et al. 2021


Fritillaria species, a well-known Chinese traditional medicine for more than 2,000 years, have become rare resources due to excessive harvesting. In order to balance the economical requirement and ecological protection of Fritillaria species, it is necessary to determine (1) the important environmental variables that were responsible for the spatial distribution, (2) distribution change in response to climate change in the future, (3) ecological niche overlap between various Fritillaria species, and (4) the correlation between spatial distribution and phylogenies as well. In this study, the areas with potential ecological suitability for Fritillaria cirrhosa, Fritillaria unibracteata, and Fritillaria przewalskii were predicted using MaxEnt based on the current occurrence records and bioclimatic variables. The result indicated that precipitation and elevation were the most important environmental variables for the three species. Moreover, the current suitable habitats of F. cirrhosa, F. unibracteata, and F. przewalskii encompassed 681,951, 481,607, and 349,199 km2, respectively. Under the scenario of the highest concentration of greenhouse gas emission (SSP585), the whole suitable habitats of F. cirrhosa and F. przewalskii reach the maximum from 2021 to 2100, while those of F. unibracteata reach the maximum from 2021 to 2100 under the scenario of moderate emission (SSP370) from 2021 to 2100. The MaxEnt data were also used to predict the ecological niche overlap, and thus high overlap occurring among three Fritillaria species was observed. The niche overlap of three Fritillaria species was related to the phylogenetic analysis despite the non-significance (P > 0.05), indicating that spatial distribution was one of the factors that contributed to the speciation diversification. Additionally, we predicted species-specific habitats to decrease habitat competition. Overall, the information obtained in this study provided new insight into the potential distribution and ecological niche of three species for the conservation and management in the future.

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