Oxytropis campestris var. columbiana - (St. John) Barneby
Columbia Crazyweed
Synonym(s): Oxytropis columbiana St. John
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Oxytropis campestris var. columbiana (St. John) Barneby (TSN 529324)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.142255
Element Code: PDFAB2X046
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Pea Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Fabales Fabaceae Oxytropis
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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: Oxytropis campestris var. columbiana
Taxonomic Comments: Columbia River crazyweed was first described as a species (Oxytropis columbiana) by Harold St. John from material collected in eastern Washington (St. John, H., 1928, Proceedings of the Biological Society of Washington 41:100). Rupert Barneby later relegated these plants to varietal status (O. campestris var. columbiana) under the more widespread O. campestris (Barneby, R.C., 1952, Proceedings of the California Academy of Sciences 27:177-312). A recent study of this group conducted at the University of Alberta by Wayne Elisens re-elevetad Columbia River crazyweed to full species status (Elisens, W.J., and J.G. Packer 1977, Canadian Journal of Botany 58: 1820-1831). Although there was disagreement about what taxonomic rank to assign to this taxon, up to this time all the authorities agreed that it was worthy of recognition as a separate entity.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G5T2
Global Status Last Reviewed: 02Nov2015
Global Status Last Changed: 02Nov2015
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by calculator
Rounded Global Status: T2 - Imperiled
Reasons: Occurs in Montana and Washington, with about 14 known populations, some of which are historical records. Threatened by hydrological alterations (man-made or natural), development, recreation, and invasive species.
Nation: United States
National Status: N2

U.S. & Canada State/Province Status
United States Montana (S1), Washington (S1)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Regional endemic, northeastern Washington and northwestern Montana. Known in Washington from gravelly banks along the Columbia River from the confluence with the Spokane River north to near the Canadian border. Also known form similar habitat along the shores of Flathead Lake, Montana. It is believed that most populations in Washington were destroyed by construction of Grand Coulee Dam. However, populations along the Columbia River may still occur near the Canadian border. Until the mid 1980's only one or two populations were known from around Flathead Lake. Elisens identified Oxytropis populations along the North Fork of the Flathead River as O. columbiana (Peter Lesica's letter to D.R. Harm, 1992).

Area of Occupancy: 6-25 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments:  

Number of Occurrences: 6 - 20
Number of Occurrences Comments: About 14 occurrences (ca.10 extant in MT, 4 extant in WA).

Population Size Comments: There are probably fewer than 2,000 plants around Flathead Lake in Montana.

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Few (4-12)

Overall Threat Impact: Unknown
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Alteration of hydrology, development, invasive species, and conversion of gravelly shorelines to lawns or dock also threaten the species. Part of the Dewey Bay population is immediately threatened by the Shelter Bay Estates development. Knapweed (Centaurea maculosa) is present at many of the sites. The effects of lake water level regulation by Kerr Dam may also be detrimental to crazyweed populations that historically were probably most abundant in a zone created by yearly water level fluctuations. Although Columbia River crazyweed may be in the Flathead Lake area in the immediate future, the development pressure and the effects of lake level regulation make long-term survival tenuous (Peter Lesica's letter to D.R. Harm, 1992). Current threats at sites need to be documented.

Short-term Trend: Unknown

Long-term Trend: Decline of 10-50%
Long-term Trend Comments: Six sites are extirpated. Populations in Washington have, for the most part, been extirpated due to habitat destruction. 

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Regional endemic, northeastern Washington and northwestern Montana. Known in Washington from gravelly banks along the Columbia River from the confluence with the Spokane River north to near the Canadian border. Also known form similar habitat along the shores of Flathead Lake, Montana. It is believed that most populations in Washington were destroyed by construction of Grand Coulee Dam. However, populations along the Columbia River may still occur near the Canadian border. Until the mid 1980's only one or two populations were known from around Flathead Lake. Elisens identified Oxytropis populations along the North Fork of the Flathead River as O. columbiana (Peter Lesica's letter to D.R. Harm, 1992).

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

U.S. & Canada State/Province Distribution
United States MT, WA

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
MT Lake (30047)
WA Ferry (53019), Okanogan (53047), Stevens (53065)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
17 Flathead Lake (17010208)+, Lower Spokane (17010307)+*, Franklin D. Roosevelt Lake (17020001)+, Kettle (17020002)+, Methow (17020008)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: White-flowered legume.
General Description: Columbia Crazyweed is a clump-forming perennial with leafless flower stalks that are 5-30 cm tall, and arising from a branched rootstock. The basal leaves are pinnately compound with mostly less than 17 leaflets, and have membranous stipules that are attached to the petiole for at least 1/2 their length. The greenish to grayish foliage is sparsely to densely covered by hairs. The flower stalks are slightly shorter to much longer than the leaves and bear 5-40 flowers in a spike-like inflorescence. The pea-like flowers are 10-20 mm long. The greenish tubular calyx is covered by grayish to blackish hairs and has five pointed teeth. The white corolla consists of an upper banner petal, two wing petals at the side, and a lower keel petal with purple spots. The pod is two-celled, several seeded, membranous, and 1-2.5 cm long

Habitat Comments: Gravel bars, stony lake or river shores.
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: 02Nov2015
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Shelly, J.S. (1986), rev. L. Morse (1994) and M. Martinez (1995), rev. A. Treher (2015)

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
  • Bauer, P.J. 1983. Bumblebee pollination relationships on the Beartooth Plateau tundra of southern Montana. American J. Botany 70(1): 134-144.

  • Kartesz, J. T. 1991. Synonym names from 1991 checklist, as extracted by Larry Morse, TNC, June 1991.

  • 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.

  • Lesica, P. 1992c. Letter of January 14 to Mr. Dale R. Harms of USDI-Fish and Wildlife Service, recomending consideration of Oxytropis campestris var. columbiana for Candidate-2 status under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973. Ecological consulting, Missoula, Montana.

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