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Is it known how long species take to become endemic? I know from examples such as Canada which have no endemics following the end of glaciation that the process must take at least 10 thousand years, but this merely demonstrates endemism must take a longer time. Has any technique been developed that provides some measure of the time needed for species to become endemic?

I am especially interested in the rate of endemism on a small and extremely isolated island such as St Helena.

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    $\begingroup$ From wikipedia: Endemism is the ecological state of a species being unique to a defined geographic location, such as an island, nation, country or other defined zone, or habitat type There is no time component to it. If a species is found only in Canada, then it is endemic to Canada. If it is found only in your garden, then it is endemic to your garden. $\endgroup$
    – Remi.b
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 14:18
  • $\begingroup$ @Remi.b That can probably be an answer and is the best OP is likely to get. $\endgroup$
    – Bryan Krause
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 16:11
  • $\begingroup$ From wiki: "There are two subcategories of endemism: paleoendemism and neoendemism. Paleoendemism refers to species that were formerly widespread but are now restricted to a smaller area. Neoendemism refers to species that have recently arisen, such as through divergence and reproductive isolation or through hybridization and polyploidy in plants." So the time of the former is the one of the extinction of all populations of a species but one, while for the latter is the speciation time. Which one are you referring to? $\endgroup$ Commented Aug 6, 2018 at 23:16

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From wikipedia > endemism:

Endemism is the ecological state of a species being unique to a defined geographic location, such as an island, nation, country or other defined zone, or habitat type.

There is therefore no time component to it. If a species is found only in Canada, then it is endemic to Canada. If it is found only in your garden, then it is endemic to your garden. No matter the duration in which the species has been found in this specific location.

That being said, in conservation biology, it is common to oppose endemic species with invasive species. An invasive species

Wikipedia > invasive species

An invasive species is a species that is not native to a specific location (an introduced species), and that has a tendency to spread to a degree believed to cause damage to the environment, human economy or human health

As the linked wikipedia page explains the concept of invasive species (or if you prefer the concept of non-endemism) is open to a lot of critics and is in no way well defined. There is no time limit under which we would stop considering an invasive species as invasive. It is rather the ecological impact of this species that will people to call it invasive or endemic based on purely subjective notions.

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  • $\begingroup$ Endemism is dependant on time and location. A long time period is required and this is what my question addresses. The role of location in endemism is self-evident. $\endgroup$
    – user8654
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 19:47
  • $\begingroup$ You seem to disagree with the Wikipedia definition, then. Can you please give a trusted source that would back up your claim? $\endgroup$
    – Remi.b
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 21:45
  • $\begingroup$ Are you sure you are not confounding the concept of endemism with another one such as the concept of being indigenous for example? $\endgroup$
    – Remi.b
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 21:47
  • $\begingroup$ The Wikipedia statement that "endism is the ecological state of a species being unique to a defined geographic location, such as an island, nation, country or other defined zone, or habitat type" is a wordier version of my statement, which I believe to be self-evident, that Endemism is dependant on location. I also said it is dependant on time - this does not happen overnight. The question I am asking, which is not addressed by Wikipedia, is whether it is known how long a time endemism takes? I hope that makes my question easier to understand. $\endgroup$
    – user8654
    Commented Aug 5, 2018 at 22:59
  • $\begingroup$ @user8654 I don't understand your comments but anyway. You might want to have a look at the edit in my answer. Your stance on the importance of time might come from invasive vs endemic discussions. $\endgroup$
    – Remi.b
    Commented Aug 6, 2018 at 23:05

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