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Acacia heterophylla

Acacia heterophylla (Photo: *)

Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Eudicots
Cladus: Core eudicots
Cladus: Rosids
Cladus: Eurosids I
Ordo: Fabales

Familia: Fabaceae
Subfamilia: Caesalpinioideae
Tribus: Acacieae
Genus: Acacia
Species: Acacia heterophylla

Acacia heterophylla (Lam.) Willd., 1806

Acacia brevipes A.Cunn.
Acacia implexa var. brevipes (A.Cunn.) Domin
Acacia xiphoclada Baker
Mimosa heterophylla Lam.
Racosperma heterophyllum (Lam.) Pedley
Racosperma xiphocladum (Baker) Pedley


Acacia heterophylla Hook. & Arn. = Acacia koa A.Gray

Native distribution areas:

Continental: Africa
Regional: Western Indian Ocean
Mauritius, Réunion
Introduced into:

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Willdenow, C.L. 1806. Species Plantarum. Editio quarta. Tomus 4. Pars 2. Pp. 634–1157. Impensis G. C. Nauk, Berolini [Berlin]. BHL Biblioteca Digital Reference page. : 4(2):1054.

Additional references

Le Roux, J.J. et al. 2014: Relatedness defies biogeography: the tale of two island endemics (Acacia heterophylla and A. koa). New phytologist, DOI: 10.1111/nph.12900 Reference page.
DOI: 10.1038/510320a


Govaerts, R. et al. 2020. Acacia heterophylla in Kew Science Plants of the World online. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published online. Accessed: 2020 Aug 04. Reference page.
International Plant Names Index. 2019. Acacia heterophylla. Published online. Accessed: Aug 04 2019. 2019. Acacia heterophylla. Missouri Botanical Garden. Published online. Accessed: 04 Aug 2019.
Hassler, M. Aug. Acacia heterophylla. World Plants: Synonymic Checklists of the Vascular Plants of the World In: Roskovh, Y., Abucay, L., Orrell, T., Nicolson, D., Bailly, N., Kirk, P., Bourgoin, T., DeWalt, R.E., Decock, W., De Wever, A., Nieukerken, E. van, Zarucchi, J. & Penev, L., eds. Aug. Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life. Published online. Accessed: Aug 04 {{{3}}}. Reference page.
USDA, ARS, Germplasm Resources Information Network. Acacia heterophylla in the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN), U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. Accessed: 09-Oct-10.

Vernacular names
English: Tamarin des Hauts

Acacia heterophylla, the highland tamarind,[2] is a tree (or shrub in its higher places) endemic to Réunion island where it is commonly named tamarin des hauts[1] The tree has a juvenile stage where its leaves have a pinnate arrangement, but in the adult stage the leaves diminish and the phyllode becomes the dominant photosynthetic structure.

It has been introduced into Madagascar[3] where it grows in a subhumid climate at an altitude of about 500–1000 m above sea level.[3]

Genetic sequence analysis has shown its closest relative is Acacia koa of Hawaii; the estimated time of divergence is about 1.4 million years ago.[4][5] A. heterophylla sequences nest within those of the more diverse A. koa, making the latter species paraphyletic.[5] Both species are descended from an ancestral species in Australia, presumably their sister species, Acacia melanoxylon; the means of dispersal to Hawaii and then to Réunion (the latter trip a distance of 18,000 km) is thought to have been seed-carrying by birds such as petrels (the seeds of these species are not adapted for prolonged immersion in seawater).[5] Both species also have very similar ecological niches, which differ from that of A. melanoxylon.[5]
Acacia heterophylla flowers
A. heterophylla wood

Catalogue of Life : 2007 Annual Checklist : Acacia heterophylla (Lam.)Willd. Archived September 1, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
Forestry Abstracts, University of Oxford Commonwealth Forestry Bureau, p.327, 1939
"Acacia heterophylla". Madagascar Catalogue – via, Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Marris, E. (2014-06-19). "Tree hitched a ride to island". Nature. 510 (7505): 320–321. Bibcode:2014Natur.510..320M. doi:10.1038/510320a. PMID 24943937.
Le Roux, J. J.; Strasberg, D.; Rouget, M.; Morden, C. W.; Koordom, M.; Richardson, D. M. (2014-06-18). "Relatedness defies biogeography: The tale of two island endemics (Acacia heterophyllaandA. Koa)". New Phytologist. 204 (1): 230–242. doi:10.1111/nph.12900. PMID 24942529.

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