Núm. 127 (2020)
Nota científica

A new species of Cochemiea (Cactaceae, Cacteae) from Sinaloa, Mexico

Leccinum Jesús García Morales
Instituto Tecnológico de Ciudad Victoria, Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas y Museo del Desierto, Saltillo, Coahuila
Rodrigo Homero González González
Museo del Desierto, Saltillo
Jesús García Jiménez
Instituto Tecnológico de Ciudad Victoria, Ciudad Victoria, Tamaulipas
Duilio Iamonico
University of Rome Sapienza

Publicado 2020-02-18


Background and Aims: Cochemiea is a genus which currently comprises five species occurring in Mexico. It is morphologically characterized by cylindrical decumbent to prostrate stems and by a long red-scarlet zygomorphic perianth, presumably specialized for hummingbird pollination. As part of
the ongoing taxonomic studies on the North Mexican flora, a population discovered by Thomas Linzen in 2012 in central Sinaloa (Mexico), previously identified as Mammillaria sp., actually refers to a Cochemiea species and cannot be ascribed to any of the known species of that genus. As a consequence,
we here propose to describe this population as a a new species for science.

Methods: The work is based on field surveys (autumn 2018 and spring 2019) in central Sinaloa, examination of herbarium specimens, and analysis of relevant literature. Its conservation status was assessed following the guidelines of the IUCN; AOO and EOO were calculated with the program

Key results: Cochemiea thomasii is described and illustrated from Sinaloa. The new species is morphologically similar to C. halei from which it differs by the hanging stems, the larger conical tubercles, less numerous and shorter central spines, and the ovoid fruits. A diagnostic key of the known
Cochemiea species is included.

Conclusions: Cochemiea thomasii is endemic to the state of Sinaloa where it occupies a small area. On the basis of the criteria B2a (geographic range) and C (small population) of IUCN, the new species can be assessed as Critically Endangered (CR) or Vulnerable (VU). Adopting the precautionary approach, Cochemiea thomasii is considered as Critically Endangered (CR).


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