Species distribution modeling of a cucurbit Herpetospermum darjeelingense in Darjeeling Himalaya, India

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Saurav Moktan
Debasruti Boral


Herpetospermum darjeelingense (C.B.Clarke) H. Schaef. & S.S. Renner is a rare cucurbit found in Darjeeling, Himalaya. It is known for its use as food and medicine with possible pharmaceutical applications. Here we assess the current and future habitat suitability of H. darjeelingense in the study area using MaxEnt modeling. In order to obtain accurate results for future models, the ensemble method was used. The current suitable habitat covers only 13% of the study area, while the future models for 2050 and 2070 show zero habitat suitability for the species. This strongly indicates a possible local extinction of the species indicating a need for rapid and decisive conservation efforts.

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