Defining strategies for in situ and ex situ conservation of Serbian spruce with respect to climate change (SInExPAN)

Principal Investigator: Prof. dr. Milan Mataruga, Faculty of Forestry, University of Banja Luka, Republic of Srpska, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Ecological and climate conditions altered due to the climate change are not suitable for rare species such as Tertiary relict and endemic conifer Serbian spruce (Picea omorika Panč./Purk.). Its rare natural populations represent valuable genetic resource which is disappearing. Therefore, any measure on its conservation (whether at the site of natural occurrence - in situ, or in other locations - ex situ) depends on:

  1. Identification of populations and inventory of forest areas with Serbian spruce using modern remote sensing systems;
  2. Description of current ecological conditions in all populations and field visits according to the results of remote and cartographic detection;
  3. Genetic structures of populations (within and among generations) as an indicator of gene fluctuation;
  4. Reactions of Serbian spruce to the current climate change by dendrochronological analysis;
  5. Possibilities of vegetative propagation of Serbian spruce for the purpose of its ex situ

By looking at these properties we get clearer guidelines on what to do in the future: the priority given to in situ or ex situ conservation, how much and which trees within the population are to be preserved and reproduced, and in what way (generative or vegetative), which areas are suitable for the establishment of seed plantations of Serbian spruce, etc.

All obtained results will be published in international peer-review journals, while collecting the results so far, as well as results from this project, will create the conditions for publishing a monograph on this valuable and protected woody species.

RESEARCHERS

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