Endemic crop wild relatives in Chile towards the end of the 21st century: Protected areas and agricultural expansion

Magdalena Jensen*, Patricio Pliscoff

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Climate change is expected to change weather patterns in Chile significantly. Preserving the taxonomic and genetic diversity of crop wild relatives (CWR) is critical to ensure the availability of crops for future human food. However, many CWR are threatened in their natural habitats and underrepresented in gene banks. This research aimed to analyze the current and future climatic suitability under climate change of Chilean endemic CWR, the role of protected areas in their conservation, and possible conflicts of land use with agricultural production. The climatic suitability of 30 species was modeled with present and future bioclimatic variables using a species distribution modeling approach. The climatically suitable areas of all endemic CWR species analyzed are projected to change; 26 increased their suitable areas in the future and four decreased (Ribes integrifolium Phil., Dioscorea fastigiata Gay, Solanum chilense (Dunal) Reiche, Lupinus oreophilus Phil.). Specific conflict with agricultural land use is projected to occur between Valparaiso and Biobio regions, where zones not in protected areas with more than 15 CWR species intersect with those that will be more suitable to produce food crops. Careful and informed planning is required to protect the future distribution of endemic CWR in Chile, especially for species whose climatically suitable area decreases. This effort should comprise a coordinated approach that includes both in situ and ex situ conservation strategies to preserve genetic diversity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2241-2254
Number of pages14
JournalCrop Science
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jul 2023
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 The Authors. Crop Science published by Wiley Periodicals LLC on behalf of Crop Science Society of America.


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