The challenges facing local plant conservationists are more serious than many may wish to believe. Although to date only two (possibly eight) species have been registered as extinct, the remaining populations of endemic species are mostly small (in some cases only a few individuals) and are often fragmented. Most natural habitats are constantly under threat from forever intensifying detrimental factors. Around 70% of the endemic flowering plant species of Seychelles are already classified as endangered or vulnerable, and in fact all of them require some form of protection or conservation action to ensure survival. This may well be true also for the ferns and the little studied
mosses, liverworts and lichens.
The main causes and challenges relate to continuing infrastructure development and the associated habitat destruction or alteration, invasive alien plant species, fire, pests and diseases, and climate change. But there can be more complex reasons, such as the disappearance of particular pollinating insects or fungal associates on which the species relies for regeneration and growth, and there is still much to learn about such inter-dependencies and interactions for Seychelles’ native flora and fauna.