7 January 2022
Uvariopsis dicaprio is a newly identified tree species. It is the first new tree species to be described in 2022. It was discovered in tropical Ebo forest of Cameroon and is native to the region. The tree has been added to the Strange and Spectacular list of plant species. The tree has been classified as critically endangered.
Why is the tree added to Strange and Spectacular list of plant species?
- The yellow – green flowers of the tree grows directly on its trunk.
- Normally flowers are produced from a modified shoot or modified leaves.
- They often resemble the branchlets.
Reason behind the naming
The tree has been named after the Titanic movie fame Leonardo dicaprio. The actor come environmental activist has been taking several measures to conserve Ebo forest. The tree has been named after the actor to boost his campaigns against cutting of trees in the forest.
About Uvariopsis dicaprio
- The tree is four metres tall. It is closely related to the Ylang – Ylang tree.
- The Ylang – Ylang tree is native to India, Indonesia, Philippines and Australia.
Conservation status of the new tree
- Critically Endangered. The researchers have witnessed only fifty U.dicaprio trees in the Ebo forest.
- They were all found in the unprotected area of the forest.
- The Ebo forest is located in Cameroon. It is home to Nigeria – Cameroon chimpanzees and critically endangered western gorillas.
- The forest also has endangered drills, endangered elephants and critically endangered red colobus monkeys.
- After several fights by the environmentalists and also by Mr Dicaprio, the Cameroon Government halted the logging concession.
- The Government in 2020 announced the opening 68,385 hectares of forest to logging activities.
- Cameroon is located in Gulf of Guinea. It is located in west – central Africa. It is bordered by Nigeria, Chad, Equatorial Guinea, Republic of Congo and Gabon.
- The coast of Cameroon lies in Bight of Biafra. Bight is a curve in the coastline and is a geographical feature.