Cerrena cystidiata was described by Rajchenberg & Meijer (1990). The species has no known synonyms and its molecular placement in the genus has been recently confirmed by Westphalen & Motato-Vásquez (unpub. data).
Cerrena cystidiata is a rare species known from only two localities in the Atlantic Forest, both forest remnants near urban areas. It is likely to become even rarer with the continued loss and degradation of the habitat in the Atlantic Forest due to human activity and climate change.
Cerrena cystidiata is known only from two sites, one in Serra da Cantareira in São Paulo State (dense ombrophilous forest) and one in Reserva do Cambuí Paraná State (mixed ombrophilous forest). The sites are about 360 km apart from each other and located in Atlantic Forest Domain, in forest remnants inside urban areas. The species is expected to occur in other areas of the Atlantic Forest domain in southern and southeastern Brazil, with a mostly subtropical distribution.
Cerrena cystidiata is known from five collections, three from São Paulo State and two from Paraná State (type locality). In over 20 years of surveys in southern and southeastern Brazil since the species description, it has been registered only three times in São Paulo. Therefore, it is likely a rare species in its area of occurrence.
Taking into account the amount of potential appropriate habitat for the species, there are 1,500 estimated sites, with 3-6 mature individuals each. Total population is estimated at 45,000 mature individuals. It is likely that these numbers are overestimated, as the species may not find conditions to occur in much of its potential range, given the poor current state of the forests where it is known from (Tabarelli et al. 2010).
With the only subpopulation known occurring in urban areas in the Atlantic Forest domain, that has just 28% of its original area remaining (Tabarelli et al. 2010, Rezende et al. 2018), and in Araucaria Forests that have lost about 97% of the original cover in the last 100 years (Castro et al. 2020), the species has projected decline in population size of at least 20% in 40 years. Population decline was estimated in light of extension loss of suitable habitat (Rezende et al. 2018, Castro et al. 2020) and the putative influence that habitat degradation has on species occupation in a given environment (Berglund & Jonsson 2002, Haddad et al. 2015)
Population Trend: Decreasing
Cerrena cystidiata is a white-rot wood-decaying fungus currently known from the Atlantic Forest domain in southern and southeastern Brazil. It grows on dead logs of angiosperms. The species is expected to be rare but widespread throughout other areas of the Atlantic Forest in southern and southeastern Brazil.
The Atlantic Forest is regarded as a biodiversity hotspot for conservation priorities due to its high diversity, endemism rates and habitat loss (Myers et al. 2000). This phytogeographical domain is estimated to have only 28% of its vegetation remaining, with the remnants being fragmented and composed mostly by secondary forests (Tabarelli et al. 2010, Rezende et al. 2018). About 60% of the Brazilian population lives in the Atlantic Forest, mainly in coastal areas, where the country’s largest cities are located (Rezende et al. 2018). Also, reduction and ‘savannization’ of Atlantic Forest is expected due to climate change in the next decades (Salazar et al. 2007). In addition, the type locality of the species is in an Araucaria Forest (mixed ombrophilous forest), which is characterized by the presence of the species Araucaria angustifolia. These forests are restricted to regions with subtropical climate in southern/south-eastern Brazil, as well as north-eastern Argentina and parts of Paraguay. However, they have lost about 97% of the original cover in the last 100 years, mainly due to logging, a decline that is still ongoing. Only a small part of the Araucaria Forests are in conservation areas, and studies suggest that, due to climate change, by 2070 they could be restricted to highland microrefugia, from which only 2,5% are in conservation areas (Castro et al. 2020, Tagliari et al. 2021).
The main conservation action required is the continuity and enhancement of protection within Conservation Areas and enforcement of public policies to recover secondary forests. Also, more surveys are needed to better clarify the species’ distribution in Brazil.
Cerrena cystidiata is known from two locations in Brazil, with at least 360 km distance between them. More surveys in the probable area of occurrence are needed to verify if the species may be even rarer than it seems and understand its distribution and ecology.
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