Sclerocactus papyracanthus - (Engelm.) N.P. Taylor
Grama Grass Cactus
Other English Common Names: Paperspine Fishhook Cactus
Other Common Names: paperspine fishhook cactus
Synonym(s): Pediocactus papyracanthus (Engelm.) L. Benson ;Toumeya papyracantha (Engelm.) Britt. & Rose
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Sclerocactus papyracanthus (Engelm.) N.P. Taylor (TSN 505080)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.159618
Element Code: PDCAC0J0K0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Cactus Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Caryophyllales Cactaceae Sclerocactus
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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: Sclerocactus papyracanthus
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G4
Global Status Last Reviewed: 29Dec2015
Global Status Last Changed: 22May2003
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by calculator
Rounded Global Status: G4 - Apparently Secure
Reasons: Known range in the Rio Grande Valley and Tularosa Valley extends from northern Texas to north of Santa Fe, New Mexico. Also found in eastern Arizona. Relatively wide ranging in the southwest with over 150 extant populations. Threats are low but include development, OHV's, and habitat degradation by livestock.
Nation: United States
National Status: N4

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 Arizona (S2S3), Navajo Nation (SNR), New Mexico (S4), Texas (S1)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Its known range is in the Rio Grande and Tularosa Valleys, from northern Texas to north-central New Mexico. It is also found in eastern to northeastern Arizona.

Area of Occupancy: 26-500 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments:  

Number of Occurrences: 81 - 300
Number of Occurrences Comments: Over 250 element occurrences and around 100-150 have been surveyed in the last 20 years.

Number of Occurrences with Good Viability/Integrity: Unknown
Viability/Integrity Comments: About 20 occurrences are assessed as having good viability but this hasn't been reviewed for most sites.

Overall Threat Impact: Low
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Threats include degradation of habitat due to overgrazing and trampling by livestock; trash dumping; off-road vehicle traffic; urbanization. This species is artificially propagated so wild collection is likely a low threat. Badgers and Oryx frequent the habitat but it is unclear ir or how their activities may threaten the species. Threats are relatively low across the species range.

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

Long-term Trend: Unknown

Environmental Specificity: Moderate. Generalist or community with some key requirements scarce.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Its known range is in the Rio Grande and Tularosa Valleys, from northern Texas to north-central New Mexico. It is also found in eastern to northeastern Arizona.

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 AZ, NM, NN, TX

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
AZ Navajo (04017)
NM Bernalillo (35001)*, Cibola (35006)*, Dona Ana (35013)*, Grant (35017)*, Los Alamos (35028)*, Otero (35035), Rio Arriba (35039), Sandoval (35043), Santa Fe (35049), Sierra (35051), Socorro (35053), Taos (35055), Torrance (35057)*
TX Hudspeth (48229)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
13 Upper Rio Grande (13020101)+, Rio Chama (13020102)+, Rio Grande-Santa Fe (13020201)+, Jemez (13020202)+, Rio Grande-Albuquerque (13020203)+, Rio Puerco (13020204)+, Rio San Jose (13020207)+*, Jornada Del Muerto (13020210)+, Mimbres (13030202)+*, Western Estancia (13050001)+*, Tularosa Valley (13050003)+, Salt Basin (13050004)+
15 Upper Little Colorado (15020002)+, Silver (15020005)+, Lower Puerco (15020007)+*, Middle Little Colorado (15020008)+, Leroux Wash (15020009)+*, Chevelon Canyon (15020010)+, Upper Gila-Mangas (15040002)+*
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A succulent with solitary, cylindrical stems, 2-20 cm tall and 1.2-3 cm in diameter. Dense, flat, papery spines and numerous secondary spines give the stem a shaggy appearance, resembling basal tufts of grama grass. White flowers appear in April and May. Fruits are dry and tan colored when mature.
Duration: PERENNIAL
Reproduction Comments: Probably dispersed by small rodents given that seeds were found in the stomachs of the Spotted ground squirrels (Spermophilus spilosoma) (Hope and Parmenter 2007).
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Forest - Conifer, Grassland/herbaceous, Woodland - Conifer
Habitat Comments: It is found in southern juniper-pinyon woodlands, Great Plains grasslands, and Chihuahuan Desert grassland; usually on red sandy soils with a calcareous or gypseous component, on open flats or gentle slopes from 1500-2200 m elevation. The plants very often grow in or near blue grama grass (Bouteloua gracilis), may also be associated with dropseed (Sporobolus spp.), and can go unnoticed because the spines resemble the dried leaves of the grass.
Economic Attributes
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Economic Uses: Cultivated ornamental, ESTHETIC, Showy wildflower
Economic Comments: Artificially propagated.
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: 29Dec2015
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: DeBruin, E. & K. Maybury (1996), rev. Treher (2015)
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 25Jan2011
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): Cordeiro, J.

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
  • Anderson, E. F. 2001. The Cactus Family. Timber Press, Portland, Oregon. 760 pp.

  • Benson, L. 1982. The Cacti of the United States and Canada. Stanford University Press, Stanford, California. 1044 pp.

  • Fish and Wildlife Service. 1983. Endangered and threatened wildlife and plants; Review of plant taxa for listing as endangered or threatened species. Federal Register, Depart- ment of the Interior. 48(229):53640-53670.

  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee. 2003b. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Vol. 4, Magnoliophyta: Caryophyllidae, part 1. Oxford University Press, New York. 559 pp.

  • Hope, A. G. and R. R. Parmenter. 2007. Food habits of rodents inhabiting arid and semi-arid ecosystems of central New Mexico. Special Publication of the Museum of Southwestern Biology 9: 1-75.

  • 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., and R. Kartesz. 1980. A synonymized checklist of the vascular flora of the United States, Canada and Greenland. Vol. 2. The biota of North America. Univ. of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill. 500 pp.

  • Kearney, T.H., R.H. Peebles, and collaborators. 1951. Arizona flora. 2nd edition with Supplement (1960) by J.T. Howell, E. McClintock, and collaborators. Univ. California Press, Berkeley. 1085 pp.

  • Martin, W.C., and C.R. Hutchins. 1980-1981. A flora of New Mexico. 2 vols. J. Cramer, in der A.R. Gantner Verlag, K.G., Vaduz, Liechtenstein. 2591 pp.

  • Matthews, R.F. 1994. Pediocactus papyracanthus. In: Fire Effects Information System. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station, Fire Sciences Laboratory (Producer). Available online: http://www.fs.fed.us/database/feis/ (accessed 25 January 2011).

  • New Mexico Native Plant Protection Advisory Committee. 1984. A handbook of rare and endemic plants of New Mexico. Univ. New Mexico Press, Albuquerque. 291 pp.

  • Poole, Jackie M., W. R. Carr, D. M. Price, and J. R. Singhurst. 2007. Rare plants of Texas. Texas A&M University Press, College Station. 640 pp.

  • Sivinski, R., and K. Lightfoot. 1994. Status summary for the grama grass cactus (Toumeya papyracantha). Report to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Region 2, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

  • Tepedino, V. J., T. L. Griswold, and W. R. Bowlin. 2010. Reproductive biology, hybridization and flower visitors of the rare Sclerocactus taxa in Utah's Uinatah Basin. Western North American Naturalist 70(3): 377-386.

  • Weniger, D. 1984. Cacti of Texas and neighboring states: a field guide. Univ. of Texas Press, Austin. 356 pp.

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