Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingeniería de Montes, Forestal y del Medio Natural

Abstract: In view of the unique nature of the discovery, this article is an account of the three botanical expeditions made to the natural enclaves of Abies pinsapo Boiss., firstly by the Swiss botanist Edmond Boissier in 1837, then by the Spanish forestry engineers Luis Ceballos Fernández de Córdoba and Manuel Martín Bolaños in 1928, and later by another Spanish forestry engineer, Santiago Sánchez Cózar, in 1946. The two later expeditions were to the Moroccan Rif, to Mount Mago and Mount Tazaout respectively, and it was these expeditions which enabled the Rifian firs to be identified as varieties of the Andalusian pinsapo fir. The Iberian and Rifian pinsapo forests are stabilised at present, due to the work of the respective conservation organisations for protected natural areas and the abandonment of the area by the rural inhabitants, which has ended the stockraising and logging to which these forests were subjected for many years. However, fire and climate change represent a threat to their continued survival.