Amanita arocheae is a very distinct neotropical member of lethal Amanita section Phalloideae, easy to recognize because it is the only one with fibrillous olivaceous-grey pileus in the Clade III of Cai et al. (2014), therefore closer to A. virosa than to Amanita phalloides. Its distribution is confined to humid oak and cloud forests in the neotropics. Cloud forests are strongly threatened, have a high floristic diversity and provide habitats where the most ancient angiosperm lineages have survived (Luna-Vega and Magallón, 2010).
Endangered under IUCN A4c criteria
Amanita arocheae is an exclusively neotropical species with a wide range from Mexico (Guerrero, Hidalgo, Oaxaca, Tamaulipas, Veracruz), Costa Rica to Colombia.
≤ 20 known localities, most finds in Mexico.
Population Trend: Deteriorating
Recorded only in humid oak and cloud forest in subtropical areas in the neotropics. Ectomycorrhizal, unknown specific plant host(s). It is expected the habitat to continue being modified 20 % in 5 years (González-Espinosa et al., 2011).
Cloud forests are recognized as one of the most globally threatened plant communities because of their naturally scattered distribution along a narrow elevational belt in which intense land-use change continues to take place. Around 60% of cloud forest tree species are critically endargered to vulnerable and more than 50% of original forest has been replaced for agriculture and grazing (González-Espinoza et al., 2011) and will continue declining (Muñóz-Villers and MacDonnell, 2013).
This habitat is in high need of site protection, making biological corridors.
We need to know plant hosts, the exact sizes of individuals and populations and the influence of nature conditions. More than 70 tree species in mexican cloud forest are already red listed (González-Espinosa, 2011).
Aroche R.M, Villegas M, Cifuentes J, Lorea F, Bonavides J, 1984b. New data on the distribution and taxonomy of Amanita phalloides in Mexico. Bol. Soc. Mex. Micol. 19: 275-281.
Cai Q, Tulloss RE, Li P Tang LP, Bau T, Zhang P, Chen ZH, Yang ZL, 2014. Multi-locus phylogeny of lethal amanitas: Implications for species diversity and historical biogeography. BMC Evolutionary Biology 14:143 http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2148/14/143
Cifuentes J, Villegas M, Pérez-Ramírez L, 1993. Hongos macroscópicos. Capítulo del Libro. in Luna V.I. y Llorente-Bousquets J. Historia Natural del Parque Estatal Omiltemi, Guerrero. Fac. de Ciencias, UNAM, y CONABIO, SEDESOL, México.
González-Espinosa M, Meave JA, Lorea-Hernández FG, Ibarra-Manrríquez G, Newton AC, 2011. The red list of mexican cloud forest trees. Published by Fauna & Flora International, Cambridge, UK.
Luna-Vega I, Magallón S, 2010. Phylogenetic Composition of Angiosperm Diversity in the Cloud Forests of Mexico BIOTROPICA 42(4): 444–454 2010 10.1111/j.1744-7429.2009.00606.x
Muñóz-Villers LE, McDonnell JJ, 2013 .Land use change effects on runoff generation in a humid tropical montane cloud forest region. Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 17, 3543–3560.
Tulloss RE, Ovrebo CL, Halling RE, 1992. Studies on Amanita (Agaricales) from Andean Colombia. Mem. New York Bot. Gard. 66: 1-46.