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The role of a local rediscovery in the evaluation of the conservation status of a plant species: Testing the hypothesis of the biodiversity knowledge gap

Fernanda Schmidt Silveira, Angelo Alberto Schneider, Luis Rios de Moura Baptista
Journal for nature conservation 2019 v.48 pp. 91-98
Neptunia, biodiversity, conservation status, extinct species, extinction, geographical coordinates, habitat destruction, indigenous species, introduced species
Although habitat destruction and the introduction of exotic species are causing the extinction of many native species, the number of extinct species that are then rediscovered is surprising. However, before searching for meaning of rediscoveries, we should distinguish between a false and a true rediscovery to avoid the interpretation of changes in biodiversity knowledge as changes in the efforts to conserve biodiversity. Here, we proposed the hypothesis of the biodiversity knowledge gap and a conceptual scheme to test this hypothesis, discussing how to deal with the rediscovery of a putatively extinct species. In this paper, we dealt with the local rediscovery of the plant Neptunia pubescens Benth. (Fabaceae), hypothesizing that if its local rediscovery is a case of the biodiversity knowledge gap (false rediscovery), its conservation status will change. Furthermore, we provided taxonomic data, geographic coordinates and figures as support for its local rediscovery, as well as some considerations about the implications for the conservation of N. pubescens.