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Definition and characterization of the Pantepui biogeographical province

AuthorsRull, Valentí ; Huber, Otto; Vegas-Vilarrúbia, Teresa ; Señaris, Celsa
Guiana region
Pantepui province
Issue Date2019
PublisherAcademic Press
CitationBiodiversity of Pantepui The Pristine “Lost World” of the Neotropical Guiana Highlands 1: 3-32 (2019)
AbstractThis chapter is an introductory synthesis of the concept of Pantepui and its characterization as a biogeographical province of the Guiana region in the Neotropical realm. The term “Pantepui” originated in the late 1960s as an informal name to designate the special avifauna inhabiting the summits of the table mountains characteristic of the Guiana Highlands: the tepuis. Three decades later, Pantepui was formally defined as a biogeographical unit based on physiographic, environmental, and phytogeographical criteria. In this currently accepted definition, the Pantepui province is a fragmented area of c. 5000 km2 formed by the tepui summits between 1200/1500 m and c. 3000 m elevation under mesothermic/submicrothermic ombrophilous climates. From a biotic point of view, Pantepui harbors a peculiar, notably rich, and highly endemic flora that develops unique plant communities not found anywhere else. The richness of the Pantepui flora falls within the more biodiverse areas worldwide, and its degree of endemism resembles that of oceanic islands. Pantepui has been subdivided into four phytogeographical districts: Eastern (two subdistricts), Jaua-Duida (three subdistricts), Western (three subdistricts), and Southern. From a zoogeographical point of view, several Pantepui definitions have been suggested, but a formal unified description and characterization are lacking. It is hoped that existing and future zoogeographical studies will help refine and enrich the Pantepui concept as a comprehensive biogeographical unit.
Publisher version (URL)https://doi.org/10.1016/B978-0-12-815591-2.00001-X
Identifiersdoi: 10.1016/B978-0-12-815591-2.00001-X
isbn: 978-0-12-815591-2
Appears in Collections:(Geo3Bcn) Libros y partes de libros
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