Conservation of threatened plant species in a high diversity area of the Brazilian Atlantic forest

Elton John de Lirio

The Santa Teresa municipality, State of Espírito Santo, Brazil, is internationally known for its high biodiversity. However, native and endemic plant species are under pressure due to deforestation and urban expansion, as it is known for the Atlantic forest overall. Aristolochiaceae, Gesneriaceae, Lecythidaceae, Monimiaceae, Myrtaceae and Orchidaceae are examples of plant families with high species diversity in Santa Teresa, all with a high number of endemic and endangered species. In this sense, this project is focused on six key species, selected by threat or endemism criteria, aiming to provide informative and reliable data for conservation. Here, we aim to perform matrices selection to collect seeds; and develop a protocol for seeds germination and seedling acclimation, enabling the production of protocols for a future restoration project in this area and (re)assess its extinction risk. The project also aims to involve the local community in citizen science and training. The results will be disseminated by video, texts and scientific papers. In this sense, our project meets the Goal 15 in the Sustainable Development Goals, as well as several targets of the Global Strategy for Plant Conservation and of the Biodiversity Convention.