Kachin mountain conifer forest



Kachin mountain conifer forest is comprised of open to dense woodlands of conifers with an understory of hardwoods. Epiphytic shrubs and bryophytes are abundant on the dominant tree species, Abies delavayi. At this altitude deep snow lies for at least a month during the year (Kingdon- Ward, 1944). The tree line occurs around 3,300 to 3,600 m. However, this is variable and depends on the relief. Very steep slopes (50-90°) are exposed to snow and land slides and cannot develop large forests . From this point upwards in altitude the vegetation mainly consists of shrubs, particularly Rhododendron and dwarf bamboo, transitioning into high mountain scrub. At its lowest elevation, this ecosystem overlaps with Kachin deciduous cool temperate forest.

Assessment summary

No spatial time series data was available to assess Criterion A and a lack of occurrence data limited our ability to fit climate models to assess Criterion C. However, mapping suggests that this Kachin mountain conifer forest exceeds spatial thresholds for threatened status under criterion B. Futhermore, an assessment of forest intactness suggested that this ecosystem is largely intact and free from human disturbance and fails to qualify for threatened status under D3. However, a post- assessment review by experts suggested that this ecosystem is subject to a range of threats that, if data were available, could lead to an outcome other than Least Concern. The ecosystem is therefore assessed as Data Deficient and we recommend urgent further work to enable a complete assessment. Data Deficient.