Lepidium papilliferum - (Henderson) A. Nels. & J.F. Macbr.
Slick-spot Pepper-grass
Other English Common Names: Idaho Pepperweed
Other Common Names: Idaho pepperweed
Synonym(s): Lepidium montanum var. papilliferum (Henderson) C.L. Hitchc.
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Lepidium papilliferum (Henderson) A. Nels. & J.F. Macbr. (TSN 503383)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.160209
Element Code: PDBRA1M140
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Mustard Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Capparales Brassicaceae Lepidium
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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: Lepidium papilliferum
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G2
Global Status Last Reviewed: 02Feb2009
Global Status Last Changed: 14Jul1986
Rounded Global Status: G2 - Imperiled
Reasons: Endemic to southwestern Idaho, where it is restricted to unique small-scale openings within sagebrush-steppe habitats. Twenty one populations are known to be extirpated and many of the approximately 45 extant occurrences are small and threatened by on-going habitat loss due to the pervasive elimination and degredation of the sagebrush-steppe ecosystem on the western Snake River Plain. Conversion to irrigated agriculture, urban/suburbanization, and the introduction of exotic annual grasses are the major reasons for the decline.
Nation: United States
National Status: N2

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 Idaho (S2)

Other Statuses

U.S. Endangered Species Act (USESA): LT: Listed threatened (17Aug2016)
Comments on USESA: Lepidium papilliferum was proposed endangered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on July 15, 2002. On January 22, 2004, the FWS withdrew the proposed rule to list this species as endangered. This occurred due to "the lack of strong evidence of a negative population trend and the conservation efforts contained in formalized plans have sufficient certainty that they will be implemented and will be effective such that the risk to the species is reduced to a level below the statutory definition of endangered or threatened." On August 19, 2005, the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho reversed the decision to withdraw the proposed rule, effectively reinstating the July 15, 2002 proposed rule. After further public comment and analysis, on January 12, 2007, FWS again withdrew its July 15, 2002, proposal to list this species as endangered, for the following (summarized) reasons. "The primary factors affecting Lepidium papilliferum are habitat based. We examined other potential threats (wildfire frequency, invasive nonnative plants, livestock impacts, and residential and agricultural development) and determined that... these factors are [likely not] threatening the species. The best available data... indicates that, while its sagebrush-steppe matrix habitat is degraded, we have no data that correlates this with species abundance. Data on overall population trends are inconsistent; although recent declines that do not correlate with spring rainfall are noted in one portion of the species' range, the best available range-wide data indicate that abundance of the population range-wide is strongly correlated with precipitation and has increased in recent years in association with increased rainfall, as expected." On June 4, 2008, the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho vacated the January 2007 withdrawal of the proposed listing, effectively reinstating the July 15, 2002 proposed rule to list L. papilliferum as endangered. On September 19, 2008, the FWS again reopened a public comment period on this "reinstatement of our July 15, 2002 proposed rule to list... as endangered."  The final rule listing this species as Threatened was published in the Federal Register on October 8, 2009.   As of April 16, 2013, the status of Lepidium papilliferum was changed to Proposed Endangered due to court opinion (Otter v. Salazar, No. 1:11-cv-00358-CWD, 2012 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 111743).  The February 12, 2014 Federal Register stated that the U.S. District Court for the District of Idaho reviewed information concerning the term 'foreseeable future', and all other new threat and trend data and determined that the species does not qualify for the status of 'Endangered' and that the listing of 'Threatened' be reinstated.  In the April 21, 2014 Federal Register, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced the reconsideration of the
final rule listing Lepidium papilliferum as a threatened species and the reopening of the public comment period and indicate the status of
Lepidium papilliferum as Proposed Endangered on their website.  On August 17, 2016, USFWS published a final rule determining Threatened species status for Lepidium papilliferum.

U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Lead Region: R1 - Pacific

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Known only from southwestern Idaho on the Snake River Plain and a disjunct population on the Owyhee Plateau approximately 40 miles south (USFWS 2007).

Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80
Number of Occurrences Comments: Approximately 45 extant occurrences.

Population Size Comments: Number of above ground plants fluctuates widely from year to year and is strongly correlated with spring precipitation (Menke and Kaye 2006). Seeds can remain viable in the seed bank for at least 12 years (USFWS 2007).

Overall Threat Impact: Very high - medium
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Threatened by the invasion of cheatgrass and the subsequent increasing fire frequency (USFWS 2007). Livestock trampling has the potential to greatly increase extinction risk (Meyer et al. 2006).

Short-term Trend: Decline of 30-70%
Short-term Trend Comments: Overall, occurrences declined in population between 1998 and 2004; average abundance per transect in 2004 was approximately 50% lower than in 1998 (Menke and Kaye 2006). Slick spot habitat quality has also declined since 1998 due to wildfire and livestock grazing (Menke and Kaye 2006).

Long-term Trend: Decline of 30-50%
Long-term Trend Comments: It was probably much more common in the past (Holmgren et al. 2006). The number of populations has declined due to habitat destruction from agriculture, urban/commercial development, and large wildfires (Holmgren et al. 2006).

Intrinsic Vulnerability Comments: The persistent seedbank appears essential for population persistence in this species (Meyer et al. 2006). Also, the species may rely on years with extremely favorable environmental conditions to restock this seed bank; if every year were average in its desert environment, the species might not persist (Meyer et al. 2006).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Known only from southwestern Idaho on the Snake River Plain and a disjunct population on the Owyhee Plateau approximately 40 miles south (USFWS 2007).

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

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States ID

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
ID Ada (16001), Boise (16015)*, Canyon (16027)*, Elmore (16039), Gem (16045), Owyhee (16073), Payette (16075)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
17 C. J. Idaho (17050101)+, Bruneau (17050102)+, Middle Snake-Succor (17050103)+, Lower Boise (17050114)+, Middle Snake-Payette (17050115)+, Payette (17050122)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: An annual or biennial from a taproot. The plant is intricately branched above the root crown, reaches 1-4 dm in height, and has deeply dissected leaves. When in bloom, the clusters of small white flowers nearly cover the entire plant.
Duration: ANNUAL, BIENNIAL
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Playa/salt flat, Shrubland/chaparral
Habitat Comments: Semi-arid, sagebrush-steppe habitats of the Snake River Plain and Owyhee Plateau and adjacent foothills of southern Idaho. Occurs only in microsites, variously termed slick spots, mini-playas, or natric sites, which have soils much higher in clay content and significantly higher in sodium than adjacent areas.
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: 05Aug1997
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: M. Mancuso (1996), rev. A. Tomaino (2009)

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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  • Davis, R.J. 1952. Flora of Idaho. Brigham Young Univ. Press, Provo, UT. 836 pp.

  • Henderson, L.F. 1900. New plants from Idaho and from other localities of the Northwest. Bulletin of the Torrey Botanical Club 27: 342-359.

  • Hitchcock, C.L., and A. Cronquist. 1973. Flora of the Pacific Northwest: An Illustrated Manual. University of Washington Press, Seattle, Washington. 730 pp.

  • Holmgren, N.H., P.K. Holmgren, and A. Cronquist. 2005. Intermountain flora. Volume 2, part B. Subclass Dilleniidae. The New York Botanical Garden Press. 488 pages.

  • 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.

  • Leavitt, H., and I. C. Robertson. 2006. Petal herbivory by chrysomelid beetles (Phyllotreta sp.) is detrimental to pollination and seed production in Lepidium papilliferum (Brassicaceae). Ecological Entomology 31(6): 657-660.

  • Menke, C. A. and T. N. Kaye. 2006. Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot peppergrass): Evaluation of Trends (1998-2004) and Analysis of 2004 Habitat Integrity and Population Monitoring Data. A Cooperative Project between Bureau of Land Management Idaho Fish and Game, Idaho Conservation Data Center and Institute for Applied Ecology.[http://www.appliedeco.org/reports/menke-and-kaye_-lepa-98-04-final.pdf]

  • Meyer, S. W., D. Quinney, and J. Weaver. 2006. A stochastic population model for Lepidium papilliferum (Brassicaceae), a rare desert ephemeral with a persistent seed bank. American Journal of Botany 93(6): 891-902.

  • Meyer, S.E. 1993. Autecology and population biology of Lepidium papilliferum. Unpublished report on file at State of Idaho Military Division, Army National Guard, Boise, Idaho.

  • Meyer, S.E., and D. Quinney. 1993. A preliminary report on edaphic characteristics of Lepidium papilliferum microsites on the Orchard Training Area, Ada County, Idaho. Unpublished report on file at State of Idaho Military Division, Army National Guard, Boise, Idaho.

  • Moseley, R.K., M. Mancuso, and J. Hilty. 1992. Rare plant and riparian inventory of the Boise Foothills, Ada County, Idaho. Unpublished report on file at Idaho Department of Fish and Game, Conservation Data Center, Boise, Idaho.

  • Steele, B., F. Johnson, and S. Brunsfield, eds. 1981. Vascular plant species of concern in Idaho. Forest, Wildlife and Range Experiment Station, Moscow, ID. 161 pp.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS). 2016. Threatened Status for Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot Peppergrass) throughout its range. Federal Register 81(159): 55058-55084.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2007. Endangered and threatened wildlife and plants: withdrawal of proposed rule to list Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot Peppergrass). Federal Register 72(8): 1622-1644.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2009.  Listing Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot Peppergrass) as a Threatened Species Throughout Its Range. Final Rule.  Federal Register 74(194): 52014-52064.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014. Designation of Critical Habitat for Lepidium papilliferum. Revised proposed rule; correction and reopening of comment period. Federal Register 79(76): 22077.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014. Threatened Status for Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot Peppergrass) Throughout Its Range. Reconsideration of final rule; reopening of the comment period. Federal Register 79(76): 22076-22077.

  • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 2014.  Threatened Status for Lepidium papilliferum (Slickspot Peppergrass) Throughout Its Range.  Reconsideration of final rule and request for comments. Federal Register 79(29): 8416-8428.

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