Botrychium montanum - W.H. Wagner
Mountain Moonwort
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Botrychium montanum W.H. Wagner (TSN 501023)
French Common Names: botryche des montagnes
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.159583
Element Code: PPOPH010K0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Ferns and relatives
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Filicinophyta Ophioglossopsida Ophioglossales Ophioglossaceae Botrychium
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Concept Reference
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Concept Reference: Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.
Concept Reference Code: B94KAR01HQUS
Name Used in Concept Reference: Botrychium montanum
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G3
Global Status Last Reviewed: 12May2005
Global Status Last Changed: 08Feb1994
Rounded Global Status: G3 - Vulnerable
Reasons: Although the number of occurrences is high (about 100-200), the total number of plants is rather low, from 2500 to 10,000 individuals. Many of the populations may be protected from logging because they are located within riparian buffer zones although grazing would still be a threat.
Nation: United States
National Status: N3
Nation: Canada
National Status: N2 (03Apr2014)

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Alaska (S1), California (S2), Idaho (S2), Montana (S3), Oregon (S2), Washington (S3)
Canada British Columbia (S2)

Other Statuses

Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC): Candidate (Low) (26Jan2015)

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Botrychium montanum is found in western North America, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, northern California, northern Idaho and northwestern Montana. Most of the known occurrences have been reported from Oregon, Montana, and Washington and to a lesser extent in Idaho, British Columbia and California, where it is known from 1 location.

Area of Occupancy: 26-2,500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments: Total occupancy acreage is from 5,000 to 125,000 acres.

Number of Occurrences: 81 - 300
Number of Occurrences Comments: Total world-wide occurrences is approximated at <200. Montana and Oregon have about 50 occurrences each, Washington 40, Idaho 13, British Columbia 5, and California 1.

Population Size Comments: Total plant numbers are probably greater than 2500 but less than 10,000

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Few (4-12)
Viability/Integrity Comments: Oregon has 2 occurrences with 100+ plants, and 3 with 50+ plants. Information on occurrences for other states unknown.

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Threats are not recorded for California and other states besides Oregon where it is considered endangered (CNPS 2001).

Short-term Trend: Relatively Stable (<=10% change)

Long-term Trend: Decline of <30% to increase of 25%

Environmental Specificity: Narrow to moderate.
Environmental Specificity Comments: This species grows in wet areas, riparian corridors and seeps. In parts of its range, Idaho and Montana, it appears to be closely associated with mature to old-growth western red cedar.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Botrychium montanum is found in western North America, British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, northern California, northern Idaho and northwestern Montana. Most of the known occurrences have been reported from Oregon, Montana, and Washington and to a lesser extent in Idaho, British Columbia and California, where it is known from 1 location.

U.S. States and Canadian Provinces
Color legend for Distribution Map

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States AK, CA, ID, MT, OR, WA
Canada BC

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AK Yakutat (02282)
CA Butte (06007), El Dorado (06017), Fresno (06019), Lassen (06035), Modoc (06049), Plumas (06063), Shasta (06089), Sierra (06091), Tehama (06103)
ID Bonner (16017), Boundary (16021), Latah (16057), Shoshone (16079)
OR Baker (41001), Crook (41013), Grant (41023), Harney (41025), Hood River (41027), Linn (41043), Marion (41047)*, Umatilla (41059), Union (41061), Wallowa (41063), Wasco (41065), Wheeler (41069)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
16 Lake Tahoe (16050101)+
17 Lower Kootenai (17010104)+, Lower Clark Fork (17010213)+, Pend Oreille Lake (17010214)+, Priest (17010215)+, St. Joe (17010304)+, Upper Malheur (17050116)+, Burnt (17050202)+, Powder (17050203)+, Upper Grande Ronde (17060104)+, Wallowa (17060105)+, Palouse (17060108)+, Upper John Day (17070201)+, North Fork John Day (17070202)+, Middle Fork John Day (17070203)+, Beaver-South Fork (17070303)+, Upper Crooked (17070304)+, Lower Deschutes (17070306)+, Mckenzie (17090004)+, South Santiam (17090006)+, Clackamas (17090011)+*
18 North Fork Feather (18020121)+, Upper Yuba (18020125)+, North Fork American (18020128)+, Battle Creek (18020153)+, Thomes Creek-Sacramento River (18020156)+, Big Chico Creek-Sacramento River (18020157)+, Butte Creek (18020158)+, Upper San Joaquin (18040006)+, Surprise Valley (18080001)+, Honey-Eagle Lakes (18080003)+
19 Yakutat Bay (19010401)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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General Description: Mountain Moonwort is a small perennial fern with a single aboveground frond. The frond varies in height but may reach a height of 12 cm. It is a dull, glaucous gray-green, somewhat succulent, and divided into two segments which share a relatively short common stalk. The sterile segment is once pinnatifid with well separated, irregular, angular, ascending lobes with entire or toothed margins. The fertile segment is longer than the sterile segment, is branched, and bears grape-like sporangia. Spores germinate underground and develop into minute subterranean, non-photosynthetic gametophytes which depend on an endophytic fungus for nourishment.
Diagnostic Characteristics: The glaucous gray-green color, succulent texture, relatively short common stalk, and irregular angular lobes rather than distinct pinnae are diagnostic of B. MONTANUM. Among the moonworts of Montana, B. MONTANUM is relatively easily recognized, but may be mistaken for B. ASCENDENS; also, small plants may be confused with other species. Reliable field determination of moonworts depends on the careful use of technical keys and comparison with sihouette outlines of verified specimens. Identification can be complicated because there is often a high degree of morphological variability between individuals in a population and between populations of the same species; several species may grow together at the same site, and the few diagnostic characters may not be apparent in small plants.
Habitat Comments: Meadows and moist coniferous (Thuja) forests, low elevations to subalpine.
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Delineation Not yet assessed
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Population/Occurrence Viability
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U.S. Invasive Species Impact Rank (I-Rank) Not yet assessed
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Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 12May2005
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Vrilakas, Sue; rev. R. Bittman 5/2005
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 06Oct1994
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): JM

Botanical data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs), The North Carolina Botanical Garden, and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).

References
Help
  • California Native Plant Society (CNPS). 2001. Inventory of Rare and Endangered Plants of California (sixth edition). Rare Plant Scientific Advisory Committee, David P. Tibor, Convening Editor. California Native Plant Society. Sacramento, CA. x + 388pp.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1994. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. 2nd edition. 2 vols. Timber Press, Portland, OR.

  • Mantas, M. and R. S. Wirt. 1995. Moonworts of western Montana (BOTRYCHIUM subgenus BOTRYCHIUM). Flathead National Forest. 103 pp.

  • Wagner, D.H. 1992. Guide to the species of Botrychium in Oregon. Biology Dept., University of Oregon, Eugene. 19 pp. + Figures.

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