Ayawasi

NGUTIPA004
Ayawasi

Country: New Guinea

Administrative region: Papua (Province)

Central co-ordinates: 1.15566 S, 132.46351 E

Qualifying IPA Criteria

A(iii)Site contains one or more highly restricted endemic species that are potentially threatened

IPA assessment rationale

16 site endemic plant species

Site description

Ayawasi is a small town the central part of the Bird's Head peninsula of New Guinea, in the Netayn river valley, a tributary of the Ayfat river. The town is surrounded by lowland rainforest and low karst hills up to 600 metres elevation. The average rainfall is 5000 to 5500 mm per year. There were several years of targeted botanical surveys in this area using forest plots by the National Herbarium of the Netherlands in the early 1990s, making it one of the most thoroughly surveyed areas for plants in north-west New Guinea.

Botanical significance

The topography and geology of this site mean that there are several different vegetation types within a relatively small area as well as typical lowland rainforest, namely tall rainforest with an open canopy on sandy soil, secondary forest, and low rainforest with a dense canopy on limestone. The limestone vegetation type has no unique tree species, but is compositionally different to the other forest types at this site, and is dominated by the tree genera Anisoptera, Tristaniopsis and Haplolobus. There are 16 vascular plant species known only from Ayawasi, of which 12 are species of Bulbophyllum (Orchidaceae). These species are mostly confined to the limestone hills. The 12 site endemic Bulbophyllum species are all assessed as Vulnerable according to the IUCN Red List criteria. Over 700 food, medicinal, material and magical plant uses were recorded by Ave, although this work has never been published.

Habitat and geology

The karst hills belong to the Kais limestone formation. The complicated landscape of the karst make the different vegetation types difficult to see on satellite imagery. There are three main vegetation types in the area surrounding Ayawasi: 1) Sandy soils with tall primary rainforest with a relatively open canopy 2) Sandy soils with secondary forest on old garden sites 3) Limestone hills with accumulated humus supporting low primary forest with a dense canopy (Polak 2000). The forest plot inventories showed that there was relatively little overlap in floristic composition between the vegetation types.

Conservation issues

Ayawasi has grown from a village to a small town since the 1990s, but it is still surrounded by large areas of intact forest, with little forest loss visible on satellite imagery, as shown by Global Forest Watch data 2001-2022. The main future threat is the 97,500 Ha logging concession which covers the area and may become active in the future. Ayawasi is also on the route of the Trans Papua Highway

Site assessor(s)

Laura Jennings, Royal Botanic Garden Kew

Charlie Heatubun, The Provincial Government of West Papua and Universitas Papua

Jimmy Wanma, State University of Papua

Andre Schuiteman, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew

IPA criterion A species

Species Qualifying sub-criterion ≥ 1% of global population ≥ 5% of national population 1 of 5 best sites nationally Entire global population Socio-economically important Abundance at site
Agalmyla singularis Hilliard & B.L.Burtt A(iii) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum barbavagabundum J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum lagaroglossum J.J.Verm. A(i), A(iii) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum luteum J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum mystax Schuit. & de Vogel A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum odontostigma J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum pendens J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum ptychostigma J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum ramulicola Schuit. & de Vogel A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum sphaenopus J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum yumtei J.J.Verm., Schuit. & de Vogel A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum zygochilum J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown
Aglaia monocaula Pannell A(iii) True True False True False Unknown
Bulbophyllum condensatum J.J.Verm. A(i) True True False True False Unknown

Agalmyla singularis Hilliard & B.L.Burtt

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(iii)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum barbavagabundum J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum lagaroglossum J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i), A(iii)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum luteum J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum mystax Schuit. & de Vogel

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum odontostigma J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum pendens J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum ptychostigma J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum ramulicola Schuit. & de Vogel

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum sphaenopus J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum yumtei J.J.Verm., Schuit. & de Vogel

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum zygochilum J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Aglaia monocaula Pannell

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(iii)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

Bulbophyllum condensatum J.J.Verm.

Qualifying sub-criterion:
A(i)
≥ 1% of global population:
True
≥ 5% of national population:
True
1 of 5 best sites nationally:
False
Entire global population:
True
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Unknown

General site habitats

General site habitat Percent coverage Importance
Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland Forest No value Major

Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland Forest

Percent coverage:
No value
Importance:
Major

Threats

Threat Severity Timing
Biological resource use - Logging & wood harvesting - Unintentional effects: large scale (species being assessed is not the target) [harvest] High Future - planned activity

Biological resource use - Logging & wood harvesting - Unintentional effects: large scale (species being assessed is not the target) [harvest]

Severity:
High
Timing:
Future - planned activity

Management type

Management type Description Year started Year finished
No management plan in place No value No value

No management plan in place

Year started:
No value
Year finished:
No value

Bibliography

Polak, M., 2000

The botanical diversity in the Ayawasi area, Irian Jaya, Indonesia

Biodievrsity & Conservation, Vol 9, page(s) 1345-1375

Recommended citation

Laura Jennings, Charlie Heatubun, Jimmy Wanma, Andre Schuiteman (2024) Tropical Important Plant Areas Explorer: Ayawasi (New Guinea). https://tipas.kew.org/site/ayawasi/ (Accessed on 27/05/2024)