NatureServe Explorer logo.An Online Encyclopedia of Life
Search
Ecological Association Comprehensive Report: Record 1 of 1 selected.
See All Search Results    View Glossary
<< Previous | Next >>

Cladium mariscoides / Vaccinium macrocarpon - Morella pensylvanica Wet Dwarf-shrubland
Translated Name: Smooth Sawgrass / Cranberry - Northern Bayberry Wet Dwarf-shrubland
Common Name: Northern Interdunal Cranberry Swale
Unique Identifier: CEGL006141
Classification Approach: International Vegetation Classification (IVC)
Summary: This association is a small-patch seasonally flooded wetland within low swales behind backdunes of major dune systems of the northeastern Atlantic coast. Vegetation is characterized by Vaccinium macrocarpon, Sphagnum spp., and scattered Morella pensylvanica, Myrica gale, and/or Vaccinium corymbosum. Vaccinium macrocarpon is generally dominant, but a number of rushes, sedges, grasses, and forbs co-occur and often obscure the low-growing Vaccinium macrocarpon. Morella pensylvanica, although a minor component of the vegetation and generally restricted to the wetland edge, characterizes this community as coastal. The wetland is seasonally flooded and is often dry on the surface late in the growing season. A shallow layer of peat overtops deep sand deposits. Associated species commonly include Juncus spp. (Juncus canadensis, Juncus greenei, Juncus arcticus ssp. littoralis, Juncus biflorus, Juncus scirpoides, Juncus pelocarpus and/or others), Cladium mariscoides, Xyris torta, Xyris difformis, Rhynchospora capitellata, Rhynchospora alba, Cyperus spp., Drosera rotundifolia, Drosera intermedia, Drosera filiformis, Pogonia ophioglossoides, and scattered clumps of Schoenoplectus pungens or Scirpus cyperinus in small wet pockets. Sphagnum spp. (Sphagnum rubellum, Sphagnum compactum, and possibly others) cover the surface. Species occurring less frequently can include Linum striatum, Lycopodiella inundata, Polygala cruciata, Calopogon spp., Platanthera spp., Utricularia subulata, Triadenum sp., and others. Floristics can vary among swales due to hydrology, soils, or disturbance regime.



Classification

Classification Confidence: Moderate

Vegetation Hierarchy
Class 2 - Shrub & Herb Vegetation
Subclass 2.C - Shrub & Herb Wetland
Formation 2.C.4 - Temperate to Polar Freshwater Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Division 2.C.4.Ne - Atlantic & Gulf Coastal Marsh, Wet Meadow & Shrubland
Macrogroup Atlantic & Gulf Coastal Plain Wet Prairie & Marsh
Group Northern & Mid-Atlantic Coastal Wetland
Alliance Coastal Cranberry Wet Shrubland

This is the revised vegetation hierarchy. For more information see Classification Sources and usnvc.org.

Similar Associations
Unique Identifier Name
CEGL006127 Pinus rigida / Vaccinium macrocarpon Swamp Woodland
CEGL006339 Myrica gale - Morella pensylvanica Wet Shrubland
CEGL007856 Vaccinium oxycoccos - (Vaccinium macrocarpon) / Rhynchospora alba - Drosera rotundifolia / Sphagnum spp. Fen



Related Concepts from Other Classifications

Related Subnational Community Units
These data are subject to substantial ongoing revision and may be out of date for some states.
In the U.S., contact the state Heritage Program for the most complete and up-to-date information at: http://www.natureserve.org/natureserve-network.
Information from programs in other jurisdictions will be posted when they are made available.
Subnation Concept Name Relationship to Standard Confidence Reference
Delaware Northern Cranberry Interdunal Swale Equivalent Certain Coxe 2009
Massachusetts Interdunal Marsh/Swale Broader   Swain and Kearsley 2001
New Hampshire Coastal interdunal marsh/swale Equivalent   Sperduto 2000
New Jersey Vaccinium macrocarpon - Morella pensylvanica Dwarf-shrubland Equivalent Certain Breden et al. 2001
New York Maritime freshwater interdunal swales Broader   Edinger et al. 2002


Other Related Concepts
Related Concept Name: Vaccinium macrocarpon - Mixed orchid / Sphagnum
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: McAvoy, W., and K. Clancy. 1994. Community classification and mapping criteria for Category I interdunal swales and coastal plain pond wetlands in Delaware. Final Report submitted to the Division of Water Resources in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. 47 pp.
Related Concept Name: Coastal interdunal marsh/swale
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Rawinski, T. 1984a. Natural community description abstract - southern New England calcareous seepage swamp. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Boston, MA. 6 pp.
Related Concept Name: Cranberry Bog
Relationship: = - Equivalent
Reference: Johnson, A. F. 1981b. Plant communities of the Napeague Dunes. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 108:76-84.
Related Concept Name: Cranberry bog
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Martin, W. E. 1959b. The vegetation of Island Beach State Park, New Jersey. Ecological Monographs 29:1-46.
Related Concept Name: Cranberry marsh
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Johnson, A. F. 1985b. A guide to the plant communities of the Napeague Dunes, Long Island, New York. Mad Printers, Mattituck, NY. 58 pp. plus plates.
Related Concept Name: Cranberry swale
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Lundgren, J. 2000. Lower New England - Northern Piedmont Ecoregion Forest Classification. The Nature Conservancy, Conservation Science, Boston, MA. 72 pp.
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: McDonnell, M. J. 1979. The flora of Plum Island, Essex County, Massachusetts. University of New Hampshire, Agricultural Experiment Station. Station Bulletin No. 513. Durham, NH. 110 pp.
Related Concept Name: Wet poor fen
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Dowhan, J. J., and R. Rozsa. 1989. Flora of Fire Island, Suffolk Country, New York. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 116:265-282.
Related Concept Name: Wet swale
Relationship: ? - Undetermined
Reference: Dunlop, D. A., and G. E. Crow. 1985. The vegetation and flora of the Seabrook Dunes with special reference to rare plants. Rhodora 87:471-486.

Ecological Systems Placement

Ecological Systems Placement
Ecological System Unique ID Ecological System Name
CES203.264 Northern Atlantic Coastal Plain Dune and Swale


NatureServe Conservation Status
Global Status: G2G3 (31Jan2007)
Rounded Global Status: G2 - Imperiled
Reasons: This association is a small-patch community with occurrences confined to low areas that are influenced by the water table between sand dunes. This vegetation is naturally limited by the intersection of two features: (1) swales dominated by large cranberry, which as a vegetation type occurs from Cape Henlopen, Delaware, north to Massachusetts; and (2) major dune systems of relatively broad extent that are characterized by dune and swale microtopography, a landform within that limited range that is restricted to Cape Cod, Long Island, and the barrier islands of New Jersey. The vegetation is restricted to large dune systems because it requires habitat to allow for the extirpation and re-creation of individual occurrences that may be naturally extirpated by coastal storms and overwash. Average size of this community is usually less than one acre, ranging to no more than a few acres at maximum. Fewer than 100 occurrences are estimated in five states, totaling no more than 125 acres. Coastal systems in general are severely threatened due to habitat loss imposed by housing expansion, and by foot traffic created by recreation seekers on beaches.

Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
United States Distribution: DE, MA, NH, NJ, NY, RI
Canadian Province Distribution: QCpotentially occurs
Global Distribution: Canada, United States
Global Range: This community is confined to major dune systems of the northeastern coast (over an estimated 350 square km). Most occurrences are found in Massachusetts, New York, New Jersey, with occasional occurrences in Rhode Island and Delaware. There is one degraded occurrence in New Hampshire. There are no known occurrences in Connecticut.

U.S. Forest Service Ecoregions
Domain Name: Humid Temperate Domain
Division Name: Hot Continental Division
Province Name: Eastern Broadleaf Forest (Oceanic) Province
Province Code: 221 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Lower New England Section
Section Code: 221A Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Division Name: Subtropical Division
Province Name: Outer Coastal Plain Mixed Forest Province
Province Code: 232 Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Middle Atlantic Coastal Plain Section
Section Code: 232A Occurrence Status: Confident or certain
Section Name: Coastal Plains and Flatwoods, Lower Section
Section Code: 232B Occurrence Status: Confident or certain


Vegetation

Vegetation Summary: Species composition can vary considerably between swales. This association comprises a later successional phase of freshwater coastal swale development. Vegetation is characterized by Vaccinium macrocarpon, Sphagnum spp., and scattered Morella pensylvanica, Myrica gale, and/or Vaccinium corymbosum. Vaccinium macrocarpon can have up to 90% cover, but can be obscured by taller herbs. Associated species commonly include Juncus spp. (Juncus canadensis, Juncus greenei, Juncus arcticus ssp. littoralis (= Juncus balticus), Juncus biflorus, Juncus pelocarpus, and/or others), Cladium mariscoides, Xyris torta, Xyris difformis, Rhynchospora capitellata, Rhynchospora scirpoides, Rhynchospora alba, Cyperus spp., Drosera rotundifolia, Drosera intermedia, Drosera filiformis, Pogonia ophioglossoides, and scattered clumps of Schoenoplectus pungens or Scirpus cyperinus in small wet pockets. Sphagnum spp. (Sphagnum rubellum, Sphagnum compactum, and possibly others) cover the surface. Species occurring less frequently can include Linum striatum, Lycopodiella inundata (= Lycopodium inundatum), Polygala cruciata, Calopogon spp., Platanthera spp., Utricularia subulata, Triadenum sp., and others. Floristics can vary between swales due to hydrology, soils, or disturbance regime.

Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Charact-
eristic
Dominant Constant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Vaccinium macrocarpon G2 Dwarf-shrub Short shrub/sapling  
 
 
Sphagnum compactum G2 Moss Nonvascular  
 
 
Sphagnum rubellum G2 Moss Nonvascular  
 
 


Environmental Setting

Wetland Indicator: Y
Environmental Summary: This association occurs in small, low, wet swales between coastal backdunes. These wet swales occur where the dune surface intersects fresh groundwater lens. These swales are seasonally flooded and often surficially dry by late summer. The duration of flooding is long enough to prevent extensive shrub establishment and to allow carpets of Sphagnum to develop. Substrate is shallow peat over sand.


Dynamic Processes

Dynamics: This association occurs in wet swales where the dune surface intersects fresh groundwater lens. Water table fluctuations depend on precipitation, which is the primary water input, and the rate of subsurface drainage. Short-term dynamics in vegetation composition are driven by water level fluctuations; drought conditions allow tree and shrub colonization, which can shade out herbs, while increased flooding favors herbaceous species and eliminates shrubs. This vegetation can grade into mesic shrubland or dune grassland vegetation.


Plot Sampling & Classification Analysis

Plots stored in VegBank


Authors/Contributors
Concept Author(s): Northern Appalachian Planning Team
Element Description Edition Date: 10May2002
Element Description Author(s): S.L. Neid and L.A. Sneddon
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 31Jan2007
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author(s): L.A. Sneddon

Ecological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).


References
  • Benedict, M. A. 1977a. Plant species of the Province Lands: Vegetation type checklists. National Park Service Cooperative Research Unit, University of Massachusetts at Amherst. 49 pp.

  • Breden, T. F. 1989. A preliminary natural community classification for New Jersey. Pages 157-191 in: E. F. Karlin, editor. New Jersey's rare and endangered plants and animals. Institute for Environmental Studies, Ramapo College, Mahwah, NJ. 280 pp.

  • Breden, T. F., Y. R. Alger, K. S. Walz, and A. G. Windisch. 2001. Classification of vegetation communities of New Jersey: Second iteration. Association for Biodiversity Information and New Jersey Natural Heritage Program, Office of Natural Lands Management, Division of Parks and Forestry, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, Trenton.

  • CDPNQ [Centre de données sur le patrimoine naturel du Québec]. No date. Unpublished data. Centre de données sur le patrimoine naturel du Québec, Québec.

  • Conard, H. S. 1935. The plant associations of central Long Island. The American Midland Naturalist 16:433-516.

  • Coxe, R. 2009. Guide to Delaware vegetation communities. Spring 2009 edition. State of Delaware, Division of Fish and Wildlife, Delaware Natural Heritage Program, Smyrna.

  • Dowhan, J. J., and R. Rozsa. 1989. Flora of Fire Island, Suffolk Country, New York. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 116:265-282.

  • Dunlop, D. A., and G. E. Crow. 1985. The vegetation and flora of the Seabrook Dunes with special reference to rare plants. Rhodora 87:471-486.

  • Eastern Ecology Working Group of NatureServe. No date. International Ecological Classification Standard: International Vegetation Classification. Terrestrial Vegetation. NatureServe, Boston, MA.

  • Edinger, G. J., D. J. Evans, S. Gebauer, T. G. Howard, D. M. Hunt, and A. M. Olivero, editors. 2014a. Ecological communities of New York state. Second edition. A revised and expanded edition of Carol Reschke's ecological communities of New York state. New York Natural Heritage Program, New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Albany, NY.

  • Johnson, A. F. 1981b. Plant communities of the Napeague Dunes. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 108:76-84.

  • Johnson, A. F. 1985b. A guide to the plant communities of the Napeague Dunes, Long Island, New York. Mad Printers, Mattituck, NY. 58 pp. plus plates.

  • Klopfer, S. D., A. Olivero, L. Sneddon, and J. Lundgren. 2002. Final report of the NPS Vegetation Mapping Project at Fire Island National Seashore. Conservation Management Institute, GIS & Remote Sensing Division, College of Natural Resources, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA. 193 pp.

  • Lundgren, J. 2000. Lower New England - Northern Piedmont Ecoregion Forest Classification. The Nature Conservancy, Conservation Science, Boston, MA. 72 pp.

  • Lundgren, J. A. 1998. Natural communities of coastal Massachusetts: Inventory and assessment. Massachusetts Department of Fisheries and Wildlife Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program, Boston, MA.

  • Martin, W. E. 1959b. The vegetation of Island Beach State Park, New Jersey. Ecological Monographs 29:1-46.

  • McAvoy, W., and K. Clancy. 1994. Community classification and mapping criteria for Category I interdunal swales and coastal plain pond wetlands in Delaware. Final Report submitted to the Division of Water Resources in the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. 47 pp.

  • McDonnell, M. J. 1979. The flora of Plum Island, Essex County, Massachusetts. University of New Hampshire, Agricultural Experiment Station. Station Bulletin No. 513. Durham, NH. 110 pp.

  • Moul, E. T. 1969. Flora of Monomoy Island, Massachusetts. Rhodora 71:18-28.

  • Rawinski, T. 1984a. Natural community description abstract - southern New England calcareous seepage swamp. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Boston, MA. 6 pp.

  • Sneddon, L. A., Zaremba, R. E., and M. Adams. 2010. Vegetation classification and mapping at Cape Cod National Seashore, Massachusetts. Natural Resources Technical Report NPS/NER/NRTR--2010/147. National Park Service, Philadelphia, PA. 481 pp. [http://biology.usgs.gov/npsveg/caco/cacorpt.pdf]

  • Sperduto, D. D., and W. F. Nichols. 2004. Natural communities of New Hampshire: A guide and classification. New Hampshire Natural Heritage Bureau, DRED Division of Forests and Lands, Concord. 242 pp.

  • Swain, P. C., and J. B. Kearsley. 2014. Classification of the natural communities of Massachusetts. Version 2.0. Natural Heritage & Endangered Species Program, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife. Westborough, MA. [http://www.mass.gov/nhesp/http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/dfg/dfw/natural-heritage/natural-communities/classification-of-natural-communities.html]


Use Guidelines and Citation

The Small Print: Trademark, Copyright, Citation Guidelines, Restrictions on Use, and Information Disclaimer.

Note: All species and ecological community data presented in NatureServe Explorer at http://explorer.natureserve.org were updated to be current with NatureServe's central databases as of March 2019.
Note: This report was printed on

Trademark Notice: "NatureServe", NatureServe Explorer, The NatureServe logo, and all other names of NatureServe programs referenced herein are trademarks of NatureServe. Any other product or company names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

Copyright Notice: Copyright © 2019 NatureServe, 2511 Richmond (Jefferson Davis) Highway, Suite 930, Arlington, VA 22202, U.S.A. All Rights Reserved. Each document delivered from this server or web site may contain other proprietary notices and copyright information relating to that document. The following citation should be used in any published materials which reference the web site.

Citation for data on website including State Distribution, Watershed, and Reptile Range maps:
NatureServe. 2019. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Available http://explorer.natureserve.org. (Accessed:

Citation for Bird Range Maps of North America:
Ridgely, R.S., T.F. Allnutt, T. Brooks, D.K. McNicol, D.W. Mehlman, B.E. Young, and J.R. Zook. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Birds of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Bird Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Robert Ridgely, James Zook, The Nature Conservancy - Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International - CABS, World Wildlife Fund - US, and Environment Canada - WILDSPACE."

Citation for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
Patterson, B.D., G. Ceballos, W. Sechrest, M.F. Tognelli, T. Brooks, L. Luna, P. Ortega, I. Salazar, and B.E. Young. 2003. Digital Distribution Maps of the Mammals of the Western Hemisphere, version 1.0. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Mammal Range Maps of North America:
"Data provided by NatureServe in collaboration with Bruce Patterson, Wes Sechrest, Marcelo Tognelli, Gerardo Ceballos, The Nature Conservancy-Migratory Bird Program, Conservation International-CABS, World Wildlife Fund-US, and Environment Canada-WILDSPACE."

Citation for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe. 2004. Global Amphibian Assessment. IUCN, Conservation International, and NatureServe, Washington, DC and Arlington, Virginia, USA.

Acknowledgement Statement for Amphibian Range Maps of the Western Hemisphere:
"Data developed as part of the Global Amphibian Assessment and provided by IUCN-World Conservation Union, Conservation International and NatureServe."

NOTE: Full metadata for the Bird Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/birdDistributionmapsmetadatav1.pdf.

Full metadata for the Mammal Range Maps of North America is available at:
http://www.natureserve.org/library/mammalsDistributionmetadatav1.pdf.

Restrictions on Use: Permission to use, copy and distribute documents delivered from this server is hereby granted under the following conditions:
  1. The above copyright notice must appear in all copies;
  2. Any use of the documents available from this server must be for informational purposes only and in no instance for commercial purposes;
  3. Some data may be downloaded to files and altered in format for analytical purposes, however the data should still be referenced using the citation above;
  4. No graphics available from this server can be used, copied or distributed separate from the accompanying text. Any rights not expressly granted herein are reserved by NatureServe. Nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring by implication, estoppel, or otherwise any license or right under any trademark of NatureServe. No trademark owned by NatureServe may be used in advertising or promotion pertaining to the distribution of documents delivered from this server without specific advance permission from NatureServe. Except as expressly provided above, nothing contained herein shall be construed as conferring any license or right under any NatureServe copyright.
Information Warranty Disclaimer: All documents and related graphics provided by this server and any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server are provided "as is" without warranty as to the currentness, completeness, or accuracy of any specific data. NatureServe hereby disclaims all warranties and conditions with regard to any documents provided by this server or any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, including but not limited to all implied warranties and conditions of merchantibility, fitness for a particular purpose, and non-infringement. NatureServe makes no representations about the suitability of the information delivered from this server or any other documents that are referenced to or linked to this server. In no event shall NatureServe be liable for any special, indirect, incidental, consequential damages, or for damages of any kind arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information contained in any documents provided by this server or in any other documents which are referenced by or linked to this server, under any theory of liability used. NatureServe may update or make changes to the documents provided by this server at any time without notice; however, NatureServe makes no commitment to update the information contained herein. Since the data in the central databases are continually being updated, it is advisable to refresh data retrieved at least once a year after its receipt. The data provided is for planning, assessment, and informational purposes. Site specific projects or activities should be reviewed for potential environmental impacts with appropriate regulatory agencies. If ground-disturbing activities are proposed on a site, the appropriate state natural heritage program(s) or conservation data center can be contacted for a site-specific review of the project area (see Visit Local Programs).

Feedback Request: NatureServe encourages users to let us know of any errors or significant omissions that you find in the data through (see Contact Us). Your comments will be very valuable in improving the overall quality of our databases for the benefit of all users.

Copyright 2019
NatureServe
Version 7.1 (2 February 2009)
Data last updated: March 2019