Red List habitat classification > RLG - Forests > RLG3.9c Macaronesian Juniperus woodland

Macaronesian Juniperus woodland

Quick facts

Red List habitat type code RLG3.9c
Threat status
Europe Vulnerable
EU Vulnerable
Relation to
Source European Red List habitat factsheet
European Red List of habitats reports
European Red List of habitats (Excel table)


Micro-woodlands of small trees or tall shrubs up to 10 m tall, dominated or co-dominated by taxa of the genus Juniperus L., all endemic to Macaronesia’s archipelagos: Azores, Madeira and the Canaries. Four distinct taxa dominate several distinct subtypes of the habitat G3.9c, each with specific sinecological traits, biogeography and floristic character (no common shared characteristic infrageneric taxa among them); Juniperus turbinata subsp. canariensis (the Canaries and a single location in Madeira), Juniperus cedrus subsp. cedrus (the Canaries), Juniperus cedrus subsp. maderensis (Madeira) and Juniperus brevifolia (Azores). The five subtypes are:

1.       Juniperus turbinata subsp. canariensis habitats of the Canary Islands (Mayteno canariensis-Juniperion canariensis). Tall shrublands dominated by hard leathery leaves or scaly-leaved plants in low altitude infra-thermomediterranean semi-arid to dry localites, on thin mediterranean volcanic rock-derived soils (leptosols or thin cambisols). Dominated or co-dominated by J. turbinata subsp. canariensis, Olea europaea subsp. cerasiformis, Rhamnus crenulata and Maytenus canariensis; secondarily also by Euphorbia bertholothii, Euphorbia  wildpretii, E. atropurpurea, Pistacia atlantica, P. lentiscus, Hypericum canariense and other characteristic shrubs can be locally dominant (see

Characteristic species
For full habitat description, please download the habitat factsheet.

Threat status

Synthesis of Red List assessment

A favourable overall status in the whole of Macaronesia is found over a 50 year time span, due to a 31% increase of the habitat area (with unknown quality trend), mainly as a result of agricultural abandonment. However there is evidence of a large area reduction in the original, historical area, with an estimated negative trend of more than 50%. Therefore, this habitat qualifies for the Vulnerable (VU) status for criterion A3. The amount of distribution grid cells is relatively low, but as there are no continuing declines or future threats, these figures do not lead to any category above Least Concern (LC).
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Vulnerable A3
Red List Category Red List Criteria
Vulnerable A3

Confidence in the assessment

Red List of habitat categories and criteria descriptions

Pressures and threats

  • Agriculture
    • Non intensive sheep grazing
    • Non intensive goat grazing
  • Sylviculture, forestry
    • Forest replanting (non native trees)
    • Removal of forest undergrowth
  • Urbanisation, residential and commercial development
    • Dispersed habitation
    • Agricultural structures, buildings in the landscape
  • Invasive, other problematic species and genes
    • Invasive non-native species
  • Geological events, natural catastrophes
    • Fire (natural)

Habitat restoration potential

Depending on the damage extent, it might bring to collapse if it affects a spatialy restricted variant/location. In this case, replanting from cultivated plants could be be advisable to obtain fully grown individuals in more than 50 years. For natural regeneration, if possible, the time span would be greater (+200). In case of more abundant variants, sucession would be sufficient in a 200+ years time span.

Trends in extent

Average current trend in quantity

Increasing Increasing
EU28 EU28+

Trends in quality

Average current trend in quality

Increasing No occurrence
EU28 EU28+

Conservation and management needs

Keeping most habitat sites under strict protection regimes, together with a proper management of the use of the dominant species (only where they are abundant and belonging to the rural/natural managed landscape), are the most effective measures of conservation.
For the very rare variants, the continuous monitoring of juniper population status is paramount. Replanting from cultivated plants (botanical gardens, etc.) might be a necessary option in the very small depleted locations (1.2.measures needed and 3.1. Restoring).

List of conservation and management needs

  • No measures
    • No measures needed for the conservation of the habitat/species
    • Measures needed, but not implemented
  • Measures related to forests and wooded habitats
    • Restoring/Improving forest habitats


For each habitat a distribution map was produced from a wide variety of sources indicating known and potential occurrences of the habitat in 10x10 km grids within Europe. Occurrences in grid cells were given in two classes: actual distribution from relatively reliable sources (surveys, expert knowledge), and potential distribution based on models or less reliable indicators. Please download the fact sheet to see the map.

Geographic occurrence and trends

EU28 Present or presence uncertain Current area of habitat (Km2) Recent trend in quantity (last 50 years) Recent trend in quality (last 50 years)
Portugal Azores Present 514 Unknown Increasing
Madeira Present 514 Unknown Increasing
Canary Islands Present 15.78 Stable Stable
EU28 + Present or presence uncertain Current area of habitat (Km2) Recent trend in quantity (last 50 years) Recent trend in quality (last 50 years)

Extent of Occurrence, Area of Occupancy and habitat area

Extent of Occurrence (EOO) (Km2) Area of Occupancy (AOO) Current estimated Total Area Comment
EU28 582350 62 530
EU28+ 62 530
AOO = the area occupied by a habitat measured in number of 10x10 km grid cells.
EOO = the area (km2) of the envelope around all occurrences of a habitat (calculated by a minimum convex polygon).

Characteristic species

Not available

Vegetation types

Relation to vegetation types (syntaxa)

Not available

Other classifications

Not available
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