Tassing Plateau

Plateau de Tassing

GUITIPA020
Tassing Plateau

Country: Guinea

Administrative region: Kindia (Prefecture)

Central co-ordinates: 9.71667 N, 13.2 W

Area: 0.5km²

Qualifying IPA Criteria

A(i)Site contains one or more globally threatened species, C(iii)Site contains nationally threatened or restricted habitat or vegetation types, AND/OR habitats that have severely declined in extent nationally

IPA assessment rationale

The Tassing Plateau is an important site for sandstone cliff species and was only recently surveyed for the first time. It is only the second known global site for Mesanthemum bennae and Cailliella praerupticola, the waterfall is the only known global site for a new species of Podostemaceae currently being described (Inversodicraea sp. nov. tassing). In addition it is home to several threatened Guinean endemic species and other globally threatened species.

Site description

Sandstone plateau with high cliffs in parts and forested steep valleys which are rocky and with limited access. The plateau straddles the prefectures of Coyah and Kindia. The nearest villages are Malassi to the south-west side and Fossikouré to the north-east. On the lower slopes of the valley and on the plateau there has been clearance for farming. The plateau is also used for cattle ranging. The grasslands are burned in the dry season. There are several seasonal waterfalls that run off the plateau; the largest near Malassi provides habitat to a unique species of Podostemaceae.

Botanical significance

The Tassing Plateau has a number of threatened Guinean endemic species present, some of which are specific to the sandstone cliffs of the lower Fouta Djalon: Cailliella praerupticola, Pitcairnia feliciana, Mesanthemum bennae (outside of Kounounkan), Heterotis pygmaea and Anisotes guineensis. Due to the fragmentation of the lowland forest in coastal Guinea, this area is an important refuge. The forested valleys have Talbotiella cheekii (EN) and Diospyros feliciana (EN), in addition to several vulnerable species of Legume trees. The waterfall is home to a new species of Podostemaceae, currently being described. Sandstone cliffs, waterfalls with Podostemaceae and lowland forest are all recognised as Threatened Habitats in Guinea.

Habitat and geology

Sandstone overlying plutonic/ metamorphic rock. Sandstone cliffs with crevices and cracks. Thin soils on the plateau with some rock outcrops. On the lower slopes the soils are deeper and humus rich.

Conservation issues

The main treats to this TIPA are from farming. Forest has been cleared on lower slopes and on parts of the plateau for fields. The high plateau area has been burnt repeatedly due to the presence of cattle herders and species that would usually have occurred here have been pushed to the edges of the plateau and to the cliff area e.g. Mesanthemum bennae and Cailliella praerupticola. There is also localised tree cutting for construction materials and hunting.

Site assessor(s)

Xander van der Burgt, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Charlotte Couch, 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
Talbotiella cheekii Burgt A(i) True True True False False Abundant
Cailliella praerupticola Jacq.-Fél. A(i) True True True False False Frequent
Mesanthemum bennae Jacq.-Fél. A(i) True True True False False Scarce
Heterotis pygmaea (A.Chev. & Jacq.-Fél.) Jacq.-Fél. A(i) True True True False False Scarce
Cryptosepalum tetraphyllum (Hook.f.) Benth. A(i) True True True False False Abundant
Tessmannia baikieaoides Hutch. & Dalziel A(i) True True True False False Frequent
Copaifera salikounda Heckel A(i) True True True False False Scarce
Diospyros feliciana Letouzey & F.White A(i) True True True False False Frequent
Pitcairnia feliciana (A.Chev.) Harms & Mildbr. A(i) True True True False False Frequent
Anisotes guineensis Lindau A(i) True True False False False Scarce
Gilbertiodendron aylmeri (Hutch. & Dalziel) J.Léonard A(i) True True True False False Frequent
Inversodicraea tassing Cheek A(iii) True True True True False Scarce

Talbotiella cheekii Burgt

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

Cailliella praerupticola Jacq.-Fél.

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

Mesanthemum bennae Jacq.-Fél.

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

Heterotis pygmaea (A.Chev. & Jacq.-Fél.) Jacq.-Fél.

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

Cryptosepalum tetraphyllum (Hook.f.) Benth.

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

Tessmannia baikieaoides Hutch. & Dalziel

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

Copaifera salikounda Heckel

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

Diospyros feliciana Letouzey & F.White

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

Pitcairnia feliciana (A.Chev.) Harms & Mildbr.

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

Anisotes guineensis Lindau

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:
False
Socio-economically important:
False
Abundance at site:
Scarce

Gilbertiodendron aylmeri (Hutch. & Dalziel) J.Léonard

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

Inversodicraea tassing Cheek

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

IPA criterion C qualifying habitats

Habitat Qualifying sub-criterion ≥ 5% of national resource ≥ 10% of national resource 1 of 5 best sites nationally Areal coverage at site
Sandstone cliffs and walls C(iii) False True True
West African Lowland Evergreen Forest C(iii) False True True

Sandstone cliffs and walls

Qualifying sub-criterion:
C(iii)
≥ 5% of national resource:
False
≥ 10% of national resource:
True
Areal coverage at site:

West African Lowland Evergreen Forest

Qualifying sub-criterion:
C(iii)
≥ 5% of national resource:
False
≥ 10% of national resource:
True
Areal coverage at site:

General site habitats

General site habitat Percent coverage Importance
Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland Forest No value Minor
Rocky Areas - Rocky Areas [e.g. inland cliffs, mountain peaks] No value Major

Forest - Subtropical/Tropical Moist Lowland Forest

Percent coverage:
No value
Importance:
Minor

Rocky Areas - Rocky Areas [e.g. inland cliffs, mountain peaks]

Percent coverage:
No value
Importance:
Major

Land use types

Land use type Percent coverage Importance
Agriculture (arable) No value Major
Forestry No value Minor

Agriculture (arable)

Percent coverage:
No value
Importance:
Major

Forestry

Percent coverage:
No value
Importance:
Minor

Threats

Threat Severity Timing
Biological resource use - Logging & wood harvesting - Intentional use: subsistence/small scale (species being assessed is the target) [harvest] Medium Ongoing - stable
Agriculture & aquaculture - Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Shifting agriculture High Ongoing - increasing
Natural system modifications - Fire & fire suppression - Increase in fire frequency/intensity Unknown Ongoing - increasing

Biological resource use - Logging & wood harvesting - Intentional use: subsistence/small scale (species being assessed is the target) [harvest]

Severity:
Medium
Timing:
Ongoing - stable

Agriculture & aquaculture - Annual & perennial non-timber crops - Shifting agriculture

Severity:
High
Timing:
Ongoing - increasing

Natural system modifications - Fire & fire suppression - Increase in fire frequency/intensity

Severity:
Unknown
Timing:
Ongoing - increasing

Bibliography

Lisowski, S., 2009

Flore (Angiospermes) de la République de Guinée.

Couch, C., Magassouba, S., Rokni, S. & Cheek, M., 2018

Threatened plants species of Guinea-Conakry: A preliminary checklist

Peerj Preprints

IUCN, 2019

IUCN Red List

Available online

Recommended citation

Xander van der Burgt, Charlotte Couch (2024) Tropical Important Plant Areas Explorer: Tassing Plateau (Guinea). https://tipas.kew.org/site/tassing-plateau-2/ (Accessed on 21/05/2024)