Casuarina equisetifolia - L.
Horsetail Casuarina
Other English Common Names: Australian-pine, Beach She-oak, Beefwood, Ironwood, She Oak
Other Common Names: beach sheoak
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Casuarina equisetifolia L. (TSN 19516)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.161277
Element Code: PDCAS01030
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Other flowering plants
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Casuarinales Casuarinaceae Casuarina
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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: Casuarina equisetifolia
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: GNR
Global Status Last Reviewed: 31Mar1994
Global Status Last Changed: 22Mar1994
Rounded Global Status: GNR - Not Yet Ranked
Reasons: Native of tropical Asia and Australasia but planted and naturalized in various tropical and subtropical regions. Southern Florida including Florida Keys, Bermuda, through West Indies from Bahamas and Cuba to Trindad, and Mexico to South America. Natural regeneration is rare in Puerto Rico where it is planted along protected sandy seacoasts and less commonly in the lower mountain regions.
Nation: United States
National Status: NNA

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
United States Florida (SNA), Hawaii (SNA)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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U.S. States and Canadian Provinces

Due to latency between updates made in state, provincial or other NatureServe Network databases and when they appear on NatureServe Explorer, for state or provincial information you may wish to contact the data steward in your jurisdiction to obtain the most current data. Please refer to our Distribution Data Sources to find contact information for your jurisdiction.
Color legend for Distribution Map
NOTE: The distribution shown may be incomplete, particularly for some rapidly spreading exotic species.

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States FLexotic, HIexotic

Range Map
No map available.

Ecology & Life History Not yet assessed
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Basic Description: A rapidly growing medium-sized evergreen tree to 100 feet tall and 1-1 1/2 feet in trunk diameter.
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)
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Disclaimer: While I-Rank information is available over NatureServe Explorer, NatureServe is not actively developing or maintaining these data. Species with I-RANKs do not represent a random sample of species exotic in the United States; available assessments may be biased toward those species with higher-than-average impact.

I-Rank: High
Rounded I-Rank: High
I-Rank Reasons Summary: Casuarina equisetifolia is an abundant non-native tree of south Florida, Hawaii and coastal California. Linked to severe ecological effects both at the community and the individual species level, this is listed as a priority for removal by The Nature Conservancy (Elfers 1988).
Subrank I - Ecological Impact: High
Subrank II - Current Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank III - Trend in Distribution/Abundance: Medium
Subrank IV - Management Difficulty: Medium/Low
I-Rank Review Date: 15Jun2004
Evaluator: Fellows, M.
Native anywhere in the U.S?
Native Range: Australia, Polynesia and Melanesia (Weber 2003).

Download "An Invasive Species Assessment Protocol: Evaluating Non-Native Plants for their Impact on Biodiversity". (PDF, 1.03MB)
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Screening Questions

S-1. Established outside cultivation as a non-native? YES
Comments: (Kartesz 1999; Weber 2003).

Subrank I - Ecological Impact: High

1. Impact on Ecosystem Processes and System-wide Parameters:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Nitrogen-fixing (Swearingen 1997; Weber 2003) and alters soil chemistry (Swearingen 1997). Shallow roots increase sand erosion, leading to degradation of the duen system (Swearingen 1997).

2. Impact on Ecological Community Structure:High significance
Comments: Tree, 7-25 m tall (Weber 2003). Will form dense stands (Weber 2003). Produces dense shade (Swearingen 1997).

3. Impact on Ecological Community Composition:High significance
Comments: Forms monospecific stands and large amounts of litter, preventing germination and growth of native species (Weber 2003).

4. Impact on Individual Native Plant or Animal Species:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Eliminates food sources for native wildlife (Weber 2003). Shallow roots inhibits nest building by sea turtles in Florida (Weber 2003) and the American Crocodile (Elfers 1988). Displaces mangroves (Swearingen 1997).

5. Conservation Significance of the Communities and Native Species Threatened:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Invades and displaces dune and beach vegetation (Swearingen 1997).

Subrank II. Current Distribution and Abundance: Medium

6. Current Range Size in Nation:Low significance
Comments: Florida and Hawaii (Kartesz 1999) and California (Elfers 1988).

7. Proportion of Current Range Where the Species is Negatively Impacting Biodiversity:High significance
Comments: Already densely established in most of potential U.S. range (L. Morse, pers. obs.).

8. Proportion of Nation's Biogeographic Units Invaded:Low significance
Comments: Probably present in 4 or 5 ecoregions - inferred from Kartesz 1999 and TNC 2001.

9. Diversity of Habitats or Ecological Systems Invaded in Nation:Moderate significance
Comments: Grassland, forest, coastal swamp and dune (Weber 2003).

Subrank III. Trend in Distribution and Abundance: Medium

10. Current Trend in Total Range within Nation:Low significance
Comments: Intolerant of cold temperatures, therefore, unlikely to expand into new areas (Elfers 1988).

11. Proportion of Potential Range Currently Occupied:Insignificant
Comments: Intolerant of cold temperatures, therefore, unlikely to expand into new areas (Elfers 1988).

12. Long-distance Dispersal Potential within Nation:High significance
Comments: Small seeds are dispersed by wind (Swearingen 1997).

13. Local Range Expansion or Change in Abundance:High/Moderate significance
Comments: Can quickly take over an area (Elfers 1988).

14. Inherent Ability to Invade Conservation Areas and Other Native Species Habitats:Low significance
Comments: Fast growing pioneer species (Weber 2003). Selfseeds into disturbed areas (Elfers 1988).

15. Similar Habitats Invaded Elsewhere:Low significance
Comments: Caribbean, Southern Africa, Galapagos? Mascarenes?, Tropical Africa? (Weber 2003). Inferred that there are few available habitats in the US that have not already been invaded, habitats that would be typical of tropical Africa may not occur within the US range.

16. Reproductive Characteristics:High significance
Comments: Numerous seeds and resprouts (Weber 2003). Can flower year round (Swearingen 1997). Seeds are fertile up to one year (Elfers 1988).

Subrank IV. General Management Difficulty: Medium/Low

17. General Management Difficulty:High significance
Comments: Hand pull seedlings and saplings; girdle and herbicide mature trees (Weber 2003). May be able to prescribe fire, but may be ineffective in areas without sufficient fuel (Weber 2003). No biological control is available (Swearingen 1997).

18. Minimum Time Commitment:Medium significance/Insignificant
Comments: Seeds are fertile up to one year (Elfers 1988).

19. Impacts of Management on Native Species:Low significance/Insignificant
Comments: Inferred - in areas of dense infestation, there are no native plants to be injured. If hand pulling small saplings, only a minimum of impact (trampling, non-target pulling, etc.) is expected.

20. Accessibility of Invaded Areas:Unknown
Authors/Contributors
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NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Edition Date: 31Mar1994
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Blythe, K. (TNC-LASP)

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
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  • Elfers, S.C. 1988. Element stewardship abstract for Casuarina equisetifolia, Australian pine. The Nature Conservancy, Arlington, VA. Available: http://tncweeds.ucdavis.edu/esadocs/casuequi.html. (Accessed 2004).

  • 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.

  • Kartesz, J.T. 1999. A synonymized checklist and atlas with biological attributes for the vascular flora of the United States, Canada, and Greenland. First edition. In: Kartesz, J.T., and C.A. Meacham. Synthesis of the North American Flora, Version 1.0. North Carolina Botanical Garden, Chapel Hill, N.C.

  • Little, E., Jr. & Wadsworth, F. 1964. Common Trees of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. 548 páges.

  • Little, E.L., Jr. 1979. Checklist of United States trees (native and naturalized). Agriculture Handbook No. 541. U.S. Forest Service, Washington, D.C. 375 pp.

  • Swearingen, J. M. 1997. Australian Pine. Casuarina equisetifolia. PCA Alien Plant Working Group. Available ONLINE: http://www.nps.gov/plants/alien/fact. Accessed August 2002.

  • The Nature Conservancy. 2001. Map: TNC Ecoregions of the United States. Modification of Bailey Ecoregions. Online . Accessed May 2003.

  • Weber, E. 2003. Invasive plant species of the world: a reference guide to environmental weeds. CABI Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts. 548 pp.

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