CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus

Photographer:
Dieter Wilken

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CPC National Collection Plant Profile

Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus


Family: 
Malvaceae  
Common Name: 
Santa Cruz Island bush-mallow
Author: 
(B.L. Robins.) Kearney
Growth Habit: 
Subshrub, Shrub
CPC Number: 
2782

Distribution
Protection
Conservation
References


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Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticusenlarge
Photographer: Dieter Wilken
dwilken[at]sbbg.org
Image Owner: Personal


Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is Not Sponsored
Primary custodian for this plant in the CPC National Collection of Endangered Plants is: 

 
Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus


Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is a small woody shrub in the mallow family (Malvaceae) that can grow up to two meters in height (USFWS 1997a). The shrub's slender branches are covered with star-shaped hairs and are dotted with small rose colored flowers (USFWS 1995). Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is endemic to Santa Cruz Island and is known from only three locations (USFWS 2000).

Distribution & Occurrence

State Range
  California
State Range of  Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus
Habitat
  Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus can be found on rocky, south facing slopes in chaparral and coastal sage scrub community (USFWS 2000).

Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is associated with the following plant species: Artemisia califorica (California sagebrush), Eriogonum arborescens (Santa Cruz Island buckwheat), Rhus integrifolia (lemonade berry), Brickellia californica (California boneset), and (Heteromweles arbutifolia (toyon) (USFWS 2000).

Distribution
  Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is endemic to Santa Cruz Island, part of the Channel Islands, California.

Number Left
  Three remaining sites, supporting about 120 individuals, are known from Santa Cruz Island (USFWS 2000).

Protection

Global Rank:  
G4T1Q
 
3/18/1999
Guide to Global Ranks
Federal Status:  
LE
 
7/25/1995
Guide to Federal Status
Recovery Plan:  
Yes
 
9/26/2000

State/Area Protection
  State/Area Rank Status Date  
  California S1.1 1  

Conservation, Ecology & Research

Ecological Relationships
  Ecological relationships are unknown.

Threats
  The introduction of alien herbivores more than a century ago has had dramatic negative effects on plant community composition on all of the Channel Islands. These effects include the reduction of native plant cover, density and biomass (USFWS 2000). Intensive herbivory has facilitated the spread of non-native plants and has degraded the soil structure causing severe erosion and the destruction of seed banks (USFWS 2000).
Malacothamnus fasciculatus var. nesioticus is currently threatened by uprooting activity from feral pigs (USFWS 2000). Its inherent rarity also make it vulnerable to naturally occurring events, such as extreme weather conditions or storms.

Current Research Summary
  • The genetics of this taxon were studied in 1995 (Swensen et al. 1995)
• Morphological variation in the species Malacothamnus fasciculatus was studied by D.L. Benesh, a graduate student at the University of Oklahoma. (Benesh 1999a, 1999b)

Current Management Summary
  Long-term management goals include restoring distribution and range of species for all communities on the Channel Islands by increasing plant cover and frequency while simultaneously reducing nonnative species (USFWS 2000). The Nature Conservancy and the National Park Service have removed sheep from Santa Cruz and are exploring options for removing feral pigs (USFWS 2000).

Research Management Needs
  Recovery criteria set forth by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (2000) include stabilizing existing populations and establishing new ones. Research that would aid in conserving plants from these islands includes understanding reproductive ecology and species interactions as well as determining germination and seedling recruitment requirements.

Ex Situ Needs
 

References

Books (Sections)

Hamrick, J.L.; Godt, M.J.W. 1996. Conservation Genetics of Island Plants. In: Avise, J.C.; Hamrick, J. L., editors. Conservation Genetics. Case Histories From Nature. Chapman and Hall. New York, NY. p 317-32?.

Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the U.S., Canada, and Greenland. In: Kartesz, J.T.; Meacham, C.A., editors. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden. Chapel Hill, NC.

Electronic Sources

CDFG. (2002). California's Plants and Animals, Threatened and Endangered Plants. List and Species Accounts. California Department of Fish and Game, Habitat Conservation Planning Branch. http://www.dfg.ca.gov/hcpb/species/t_e_spp/teplant/teplanta.shtml. Accessed: 2002.

USFWS. (2002). Threatened & Endangered Plants Within Ventura Field and Wildlife Office Area of Responsibility. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Ventura Fish and Wildlife Office. http://ventura.fws.gov/plant.html. Accessed: 2002.

Journal Articles

Benesh, D.L.; Elisens, W.J. 1999. Morphological variation in Malacothamnus fasciculatus (Torrey & A. Gray) E. Greene (Malvaceae) and Related Species. Madroño. 46, 3: 142.

Swensen, S.M.; Allan, G.J.; Howe, M.; Elisens, Wayne J.; Junak, S.A.; Reisenberb, L.H. 1995. Genetic analysis of the endangered island endemic Malacothamnus fasciculatus (Nutt) Greene var. nesoiticus (Rob) Kearn (Malvaceae). Conservation Biology. 9, 2: 404-415.

USFWS. 1995. Proposed rule for 16 plant taxa from the northern Channel Islands, California. Federal Register. 60, 142: 37993-38010.

USFWS. 1997. Final rule for 13 plant taxa from the northern Channel Islands, California. Federal Register. 62, 147: 40954-40974.

USFWS. 1997. Notice of Reopening of Comment Period on Proposed Endangered Status for Sixteen Plants from the Northern Channel Islands of California. Federal Register. 62, 14: 3263.

Reports

1995. TNC "Plants in Need" List. The Nature Conservancy. p.3.

Rutherford, Connie. 1993. Candidate Category/Listing Priority Numbers Assignment Form. U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

Sanguamphai. 1989. 1988 Annual Report on the Status of California's State Listed Threatened and Endangered Plants and Animals. State of California, Department of Fish and Game.

Swensen, S.M.; Rieseberg, L.H. 1994. A Genetic Study of an Endangered Species: Santa Cruz Island Bush Mallow. San Francisco, CA: The Nature Conservancy, California Regional Office. p.2.

USFWS. 2000. Thirteen plant taxa from the northern Channel Islands Recovery Plan. Portland, Oregon: U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Region 1. p.93.

Theses

Benesh, D.L. 1999. Morphological variation in Malacothamnus fasciculatus (Malvaceae) and related species. [M.S. Thesis]: University of Oklahoma. Norman. 37p.


  This profile was updated on 3/4/2010
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