Rare and endangered plants and animals of southern ... RARE AND ENDANGERED PLANTS AND ANIMALS OF SOUTHERN

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  • R A R E AND E N D A N G E R E D P L A N T S AND A N I M A L S O F S O U T H E R N A P P A L A C H I A N W E T L A N D S

    by Nora A. Murdock U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

    Endangered Species Field Office 330 Ridgefield Court

    Asheville, North Carolina, U.S.A. 28806

    Abstract. At least one-third of the threatened and endangered species of the United States live in wetlands. Southern Appalachian bogs and fens, in particular, support a wealth of rare and unique life forms, many of which are found in no other habitat type. In North Carolina alone, nonalluvial mountain wetlands provide habitat for nearly 90 species of plants and animals that are considered rare, threatened, or endangered by the North Carolina Plant Conservation Program, the North Carolina Natural Heritage Program, the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, or the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. These species include the bog turtle, mountain sweet pitcher plant, green pitcher plant, swamp pink, bunched arrowhead, and Gray's lily, all of which are either on the federal list of endangered and threatened species or under consideration for that list. Mountain wetland habitats for these species are being destroyed and degraded at an accelerating rate for highway construction and expansion and residential and recreational development, as well as for industrial and agricultural uses.

    KEY WORDS: mountain bogs, wetlands, endangered and threatened species.

    1. Introduction

    In only two centuries, over one-half of the wetlands that originally existed in the United States, outside of Alaska and Hawaii, have been destroyed (Dahl, 1990). Despite protective legislation and recent efforts directed at slowing wetland destruction, wetlands losses in this country are continuing at nearly one-half million acres annually (Hefner, this volume; Dahl and Johnson, 1991).

    Mountain wetlands, particularly nonalluvial wetlands, are one of the most important habitats for rare species in the Southeast. Until recently, however, they have received little attention from regulatory agencies, in part because those that remain are usually small (under 10 acres) and often difficult to map using standard wetland inventory techniques (Hefner, this volume; Weakley and Schafale, this volume). Much of the information presented here is from North Carolina, where the majority of these habitats remain, but the general trends can be applied to the remainder o f the southern Appalachian area as well (southern Virginia, eastern Tennessee, western North Carolina, northern South Carolina, and northern Georgia). Tables I and II readily illustrate the importance of mountain wetlands, particularly bogs and fens, to rare plants and animals in this region. Almost one-fifth of the

    Water, Air and Soil Pollution 77: 385--405, 1994. [189] �9 1994 Kluwer Academic Publishers. Printed in the Netherlands.

  • 386 N . A . M U R D O C K

    TABLE I

    RARE ANIMALS OF SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN WETLANDS

    i iJ i i i i i iiiiiiiiiiiii!ii!iiii i i i iii iiiiiii!i i !i i iiii i i i iiiiiiii i ; i i i i i i ii ii iiiii iiiiiiiiiii!iii iii i iiiii iii i i iiiiiiiiii iiiii i i i i i iii I" ' ~ " ~ ' ~ " .............. " ' " " ' ' " " '" " ........ W e t :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    !~i~ii~;~!~i~iii~ii~iii~iii~iii~ii~ii~!i;i!~i!~!i~!i!!!!!i!~!~i~!~i~!~ii~iiiii~ Bogs Swamps meadows Pools Marshes Bottomlands

    star-nosed mole (Condylura cfistata parva)

    bog turtle (Clemmys muhlenbergii)

    mole salamander (Ambystoma talpoideum)

    four-toed salamander (Hemidactylium scutatum)

    Baltimore butterfly (Euphydryas phaeton)

    Southern bog lemming (Synaptomys cooperi)

    X X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    [190]

  • ENDANGERED PLANTS AND ANIMALS 387

    TABLE II

    RARE PLANTS OF SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN WETLANDS i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~i~!~i~!~!~i~i~i~i~i~!~i~i~!~i~S~!~i~ ?,~:i:i:i:i:i:~:!:i:i:i:i:!: ~ ~ [ ~ ~ [ ~ ~ [ ~ [ ~ [ ~ [ ~ : . : . : . : : : . : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : . : : : : : . : : : :> : . : . : : : : : . : .

    ::::::::::::::•::::::::::::;::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

    iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii iiiiiiiiiiiii i ! ! !i ! i i iiiiiiii ii iiiii ~i~i~i~i~!~!!i~i!!!!ii!iiiiii!!iii!iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii~i~i~i!i~i~i!i!i!i~i~i~i~i!i~i~!~iii!iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!i~iiiiiiii!

    I ::

    bog rose (Arethusa bulbosa) wm

    bog jack-in-the-pulpit (Arisaema triphyllum ssp. stewardsonfi)

    blunt-lobed grape fern (Botrychium oneidense)

    marsh marigold (Caltha palustris)

    i i

    marsh bellflower (Campanula aparinoides)

    hay sedge (Carex argyrantha)

    Bogs

    X

    X

    X

    X

    Barratt's sedge (Carex X barrattii)

    brown bog sedge (Carex buxbaumii)

    cone-shaped sedge (Carex conoidea)

    X X

    X

    small crested sedge (Carex X cristatella)

    few-seeded sedge (Carex X

    oligosperma)

    necklace sedge (Carex proiecta)

    Schweinitz's sedge (Carex schweinitzii)

    X

    sedge (Carex trichocarpa) X

    High elevation

    Fens seeps Seeps

    X

    Swamp Wet forests meadows

    X

    X

    X

    X X

    X

    X

    [1911

  • 388 N.A. MURDOCK

    iiiiiiiiiii',i iiiiiiiiiiiii , ii iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!iiii!! 12:!:i:i:!:!:i:i:i ~, :~:i:i:i:i:i:i:i:i: ~:~: i:i:i:i:i:i:i:i:i:i:i: ::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::: :::::

    three-seeded sedge (Carex trisperma)

    Cuthbert's turttehead (Chelone cuthbertii)

    twig-rush (.Cladium mariscoides)

    robin runaway (Dalibarda repens)

    bog oatgrass (Danthonia epilis)

    purpleleaf willowherb (Epilobium ciliatum)

    narrow pipewort (Eriocaulon lineare)

    Texas hatpins (Eriocaulon texense)

    queen-of-the-prairie (Filipendula rubra)

    fringed gentian (Gentianopsis cfinita)

    yellow avens CGeum aleppicum)

    rough avens (Geum laciniatum var. tricho-carpum)

    littleleaf sneezeweed (Helenium brevifolium)

    swamp pink (Helonias bullata)

    holy grass (Hierochloe odorata)

    Appalachian fir-clubmoss (Huperzia appalachiana)

    I !

    TABLE II (continued)

    High elevation Swamp Wet

    Bogs Fens seeps Seeps forests meadows

    X X X

    X

    X X

    X X

    X

    X

    X

    II

    | 1

    |1

    X i i

    i i

    i i

    i i

    i i

    , i

    [192]

  • ENDANGERED PLANTS AND ANIMALS 389

    TABLE II (continued) /I ~ w:i : i ; i . : . : . : . : . : : : : : ; : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : . . . . , . . . . . . .~,. . . . , , . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : ~ l

    ~ ~i~ i~i~i~,~ii,~i~ ~ ~ ~ ~i~i~ ~!~!~ ~ ~ ~ ~i~i~i~,~ ~i~ ,~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~! ~i~! ........................................................................ ~ .......................................................................... elevation Swamp Wet

    I :i Bogs Fens seeps Seeps forests m e a d o w s '1

    long-stalked holly ~ collina) X

    rough rash (Juncus caesariensis)

    | )

    rough blazing star (Liatris aspera)

    i i

    Heller's blazing star (Liatris helleri)

    i i

    yellow Canada lily (Lilium canadense ssp. canadense)

    red Canada lily (Lilium canadense ssp, editomm)

    .i Gray's lily (Lilium grayi)

    American fly-honeysuckle (Lonicera canadensis)

    i i .

    bog clubmoss (Lycopodiella inundata)

    large-flowered Barbara's buttons (Marshallia grandiflora)

    buckbean (Menyanthes trifoliata)

    bristly muhly (Muhlenbergia glomerata)

    sweet gale (Myrica

    bog asphodel (Narthecium americanum)

    perennial sundrops (Oenothera perennis)

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    X

    [1931

  • 390 N.A. MURDOCK

    TABLE II (continued)

    ' ii iii!j jiiQiiiiiii@ii j!, i!i!,jiiii iii iiiii i i i i!iiiiiiii i i ', uiiiiiiiiiD i iliiiiiiiii U i igh

    elevation Swamp Wet I i: Bogs Fens seeps Seeps forests meadows '1

    large-leaved grass-of-Parnassus i, (Pamassia grandifolia)

    swamp lousewort (Pedicularis ;, lanceolata)

    northern rein orchid (Platanthera flava var. herbiola)

    large purple-fringed orchid (Platanthera grandiflora)

    white fringeless orchid