Title: Global warming scenario depicts enhanced spatial distribution of Quercus lanata in the western Himalayas

Authors: Maneesh S. Bhandari; Rajendra K. Meena; Rajeev Shankhwar; Shailesh Pandey; Rama Kant; Santan Barthwal; Harish S. Ginwal

Addresses: Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India ' Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India ' Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India ' Forest Pathology Discipline, Division of Forest Protection, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248006, Uttarakhand, India ' Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India ' Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India ' Division of Genetics and Tree Improvement, Forest Research Institute, Dehradun, 248195, Uttarakhand, India

Abstract: Quercus lanata, native to Indian Himalayan Region (IHR), is a less explored but extremely important species. Habitat fragmentation, forest degradation, lower seed viability and relegated regeneration contributed to the declining population of this species. The present study aimed to predict the distribution of Q. lanata in western Himalayas using MaxEnt modelling, where 70% of the geo-coordinates were used for prediction and rest for validation. Results revealed the statistically significant AUC value ranged from 0.896 ± 0.095 (LGM) to 0.982 ± 0.021 (current). Under the global warming scenario, the ecological niche predicted by the RCP 2.6, 4.5, 6.0 and 8.5 climatic models showed significant increase in average area (60.16%) than the current prediction, with highest prediction (187.74 km2) was shown by RCP 4.5 during 2070. The MaxEnt model revealed an increase inhabitation of Q. lanata in future and suggested that the species could be used particularly in plantation forestry to mitigate the global warming threats.

Keywords: Quercus lanata; Indian Himalayan Region; IHR; MaxEnt model; ecological niche; global warming.

DOI: 10.1504/IJGW.2020.110861

International Journal of Global Warming, 2020 Vol.22 No.3, pp.255 - 271

Received: 01 Aug 2019
Accepted: 21 Mar 2020

Published online: 12 Oct 2020 *

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