Silene spaldingii - S. Wats.
Spalding's Campion
Other English Common Names: Spalding's Catchfly
Other Common Names: Spalding's silene
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Silene spaldingii S. Wats. (TSN 20126)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.132941
Element Code: PDCAR0U1S0
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Pink Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Caryophyllales Caryophyllaceae Silene
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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: Silene spaldingii
Taxonomic Comments: Distinct species.
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G2
Global Status Last Reviewed: 07May2013
Global Status Last Changed: 02Apr1990
Ranking Methodology Used: Ranked by calculator
Rounded Global Status: G2 - Imperiled
Reasons: This regional endemic is restricted to remnants of the prairie grasslands of eastern Washington, northeastern Oregon, northern Idaho, and western Montana (barely extending into British Columbia, Canada). It is currently known from 35-40 extant occurrences in Washington, 12-14 in Oregon, about 10 in Idaho, and 8-9 in Montana. However, the vast majority of these sites have fewer than 50 individual plants, and about 90% of the estimated 11,000 total individuals are concentrated on a single site in Montana. Range-wide, a significant amount of habitat has been lost to conversion to agriculture, restricting most remaining occurrences to small, isolated fragments of native vegetation, where they are vulnerable to degradation. Genetic isolation may also be of concern.
Nation: United States
National Status: N2
Nation: Canada
National Status: N1 (11Oct2016)

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

Other Statuses

U.S. Endangered Species Act (USESA): LT: Listed threatened (10Oct2001)
Comments on USESA: Silene spaldingii was a candidate for federal listing from 1975-1999. It was proposed threatened on December 3, 1999 and was listed as threatened under the U.S. Endangered Species Act on Oct. 10, 2001.
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service Lead Region: R1 - Pacific
Canadian Species at Risk Act (SARA) Schedule 1/Annexe 1 Status: E (15Aug2006)
Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC): Endangered (05May2005)

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Regional endemic restricted to remnants of the Poulouse Prairie grasslands of eastern Washington, northeastern Oregon, northern Idaho, and western Montana (barely extending into British Columbia, Canada).

Area of Occupancy: 26-125 4-km2 grid cells
Area of Occupancy Comments:  

Number of Occurrences: 21 - 80
Number of Occurrences Comments: Currently known from about 10 sites in Idaho, 8-9 in Montana, 35-40 in Washington and 12-40 in Oregon.

Population Size Comments: There are an estimated 11,000 individuals at the known sites. However, 10,000 of those plants are at the exemplary site in Montana. A majority of the known occurrences have less than 50 individuals. Several have fewer than 25 plants.

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: A significant amount of habitat has been lost to conversion to agriculture. Many remaining occurrences are in small remnant, isolated fragments of native vegetation. Populations are threatened by agricultural practices, including application of herbicides and grazing. Although probably once widespread in the Palouse region, S. spaldingii is now known from mainly small, fragmented sites on the periphery of its former range. Most remaining populations are small and threatened by weed invasion (including yellow starthistle in places), herbicide treatment (particularly because many populations are small and located near farmlands and roads), and livestock grazing (Gamon 1991; Lorain 1991; Schassberger 1988). Activities such as road construction and maintenance, gravel mining, off-road vehicles, and urban developments are additional threats (Lorain 1991: Heidel 1995).

Short-term Trend: Decline of 10-30%
Short-term Trend Comments: Declines due to invasive species, lack of fire to maintain habitat, and grazing.

Long-term Trend: Decline of 50-80%
Long-term Trend Comments: A significant amount of habitat was probably lost when Palouse grasslands were converted to agriculture (grazing, specifically, was detrimental to species). Development has also played a role in reducing suitable habitat.

Intrinsic Vulnerability Comments: Species does not appear to be very tolerant of grazing pressure or competition from non-native weedy species.

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Regional endemic restricted to remnants of the Poulouse Prairie grasslands of eastern Washington, northeastern Oregon, northern Idaho, and western Montana (barely extending into British Columbia, Canada).

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

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

Range Map
No map available.


U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
ID Idaho (16049), Latah (16057), Lewis (16061), Nez Perce (16069)
MT Flathead (30029), Lake (30047), Lincoln (30053), Sanders (30089)
OR Wallowa (41063)
WA Adams (53001), Asotin (53003), Lincoln (53043), Spokane (53063), Whitman (53075)
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
17 Upper Kootenai (17010101)+, Fisher (17010102)+, Flathead Lake (17010208)+, Lower Flathead (17010212)+, Upper Spokane (17010305)+*, Hangman (17010306)+*, Lower Spokane (17010307)+, Franklin D. Roosevelt Lake (17020001)+, Upper Crab (17020013)+, Hells Canyon (17060101)+, Imnaha (17060102)+, Lower Snake-Asotin (17060103)+, Wallowa (17060105)+, Lower Grande Ronde (17060106)+, Lower Snake-Tucannon (17060107)+, Palouse (17060108)+, Rock (17060109)+, Lower Salmon (17060209)+, Clearwater (17060306)+
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A perennial herb with stout stems, 2-8 dm tall. White flowers, forming a tight, leafy flower head, bloom from late June to August.
General Description: Spalding's Campion is a perennial with a simple or branched rootcrown. There are 4-7 pairs of sessile, broadly lance-shaped leaves that are 6-7 cm long below and gradually reduced in size upward. Herbage is long-hairy and very sticky. There are few to many flowers in a leafy, somewhat open inflorescence. The tubular calyx is ca. 15 mm long, has 10 nerves on its surface, and is very sticky. The corolla has 5 separate, white petals, each composed of a narrow claw that is ca. 15 mm long expanding into a broadened blade above. Only the entire or shallowly-lobed blade with 4 tiny wings at the base protrudes beyond the mouth of the calyx. The fruit is a capsule that is 10-15 mm long and filled with numerous tiny seeds.
Technical Description: Villous-tomentose and more or less viscid-pubescent perennial from a simple or branched caudex, 2-6 dm tall; cauline leaves 4-7 pairs, oblanceolate below to lanceolate above, 6-7 cm long, 0.5-1.5 cm broad, sessile and slightly connate; flowers several to many in a leafy and usually compact cyme; calyx tubular-campanulate, about 15 mm long at anthesis, becoming more nearly clavate-campanulate in fruit, 10-nerved; corolla white, the claw of the petals about 15 mm long, not auriculate above, the blade very short, ovate, about 2 mm long, entire to shallowly emarginate; appendages 4 (5 or 6), ovate-lanceolate, about 0.5 mm long; carpophore about 2 mm long, glabrous; styles 3; capsule 1-celled; seeds light brown, about 2 mm long, corrugate-wrinkled and inflated. Chromosome number 2N=24 (adapted from Hitchcock et al. 1964).
Diagnostic Characteristics: This species can be distinguished from other perennial SILENE by its very sticky foliage and by its petals that are entire or only shallowly lobed.
Duration: PERENNIAL, Long-lived
Reproduction Comments: Silene spaldingii is a partially self-compatible, hermaphroditic perennial. Reproduction is apparently via seed only, as rhizomes or other means of vegetative propagation are lacking. Seeds appear to require cold stratification, so germination occurs mainly in the spring. Rosettes are formed the first year and flowering may occur during or after the second season. Flowers are protandrous (Lesica and Heidel 1996). Anthers mature and dehise pollen first. During this time, the styles are unexpanded, and the unexposed stigmatic surfaces are held well below the level of the anthers. After the anthers shrivel and fall from the filaments, the three styles expand and the stigmas become receptive. Each flower persists for two to several days, and two or more flowers may be in bloom on the same plant, so geitonogamous pollination is possible. This system promotes outcrossing while allowing the possibility of self-pollination (Lesica 1991; 1993). The bumblebee, Bombus fervidus, appears to be the only significant pollination vector for S. spaldingii throughout its range (Lesica and Heidel 1996). At least at some populations, S. spaldingii appears to be subject to pollinator limitations, inbreeding depression, and a large genetic load (Lesica 1991; 1993).
Known Pests: LEPIDOPTERAN LARVAE
Ecology Comments: Silene spaldingii most frequently occurs in relatively intact climax or successionally advanced mesic grassland communities (Lorain 1991). It does not occur at sites where the native vegetation has been displaced by aggressive weeds. It is apparently tolerant of light to moderate grazing (Schassberger 1988). In areas where grazing occurs, it does not appear to be preferred by cattle, but these populations also are much smaller than those in mature grassland habitats. Lesica (1994) found that prescribed burning at a site in Montana increased growth, recruitment and flowering of Silene spaldingii.
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Grassland/herbaceous
Habitat Comments: Restricted to Palouse Prairies, sometimes extending into areas where the grasslands are intermingled with ponderosa pine (Pinus ponderosa) woodlands. Soils are almost always a productive, deep loess. Elevation range is 580-1,220 m.

Silene spaldingii is restricted to Festuca idahoensis habitat types and phases throughout its range. These areas are often referred to as Palouse prairie. Sites are often near lower treeline, or near scattered ponderosa pine trees. Populations have been found on all aspects, but there seems to be a preference for northerly-facing aspects. It occurs at elevations ranging from about 1,900 to 3,600 feet, and on flat to steep slopes. Soils are almost always productive silt/loams (loess) that are moderately deep and sometimes gravelly (Gamon 1991; Lorain 1991). The soils are depositional materials from catastrophic floods of glacial Lake Missoula that extend from Montana across Idaho into eastern Oregon and Washington.

Economic Attributes
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Economically Important Genus: Y
Economic Comments: According to Hitchcock et al. (1964), Silene acualis, S. armeria and S. hookeri are all prized rock gardening species.
Management Summary
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Stewardship Overview: Continue to monitor known populations for status of threats, site condition, and abundance of plants. Survey potential habitat for new populations. Prioritize surveying EOs that haven't been visited for 20+ years and that may be extirpated. Throughout its range, most occurrences of Silene spaldingii are located on private land. In Washington, occurrences are also located on Washington State University, Washington Department of Natural Resources, Washington State Parks and Recreation, and BLM land. A portion of the largest occurrence known is located on The Nature Conservancy's (TNC) Dancing Prairie Preserve in northwestern Montana. Another occurrence occurs on TNC's Garden Creek Preserve in Idaho. S. spaldingii occurs on Indian Reservation land in Montana and Idaho. Several occurrences are known from Forest Service land in Oregon, and BLM land in Idaho. Preliminary genetic analysis (Baldwin and Brunsfeld 1995), pollination and reproductive studies (Lesica 1988; 1991; 1993; Lesica and Heidel 1996), fire ecology research (Lesica 1992, 1995), and monitoring studies (Lesica 1988) have been conducted for S. spaldingii. Several of these projects are ongoing.
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: 07May2013
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Gamon, John G., rev. Gamon/Maybury (1996), rev. 2012 BWB ranking workshop with representatives from MT, OR, ID, and WA, (Treher entered information) (2013)
Management Information Edition Date: 10May2013
Management Information Edition Author: Treher
Element Ecology & Life History Edition Date: 14May1996
Element Ecology & Life History Author(s): M. Mancuso (5/96); KAJ (11/94)

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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  • Atwood, D., and N. Charlesworth. 1987. Status report for Silene spaldingii. USDA Forest Service, Intermountain Region, Ogden, UT. Not paged.

  • Baldwin, C. T., and S. J. Brunsfeld. 1995. Preliminary genetic analysis of Silene spaldingii (Spalding's catchfly), a candidate threatened species. Wildland Plant Ecogenetics Cooperative, University of Idaho, in cooperation with Montana Natural Heritage Program. Not paged.

  • Brooks, P.J., K. Urban, E. Yates, and C.G. Johnson Jr. 1991. Sensitive plants of the Malheur, Ochoco, Umatilla, and the Wallowa-Whitman National Forests. USDA Forest Service, Pacific Northwest Region.

  • Flora of North America Editorial Committee. 2005. Flora of North America North of Mexico. Vol. 5. Magnoliophyta: Caryophyllidae: Caryophyllales, Polygonales, and Plumbaginales. Oxford Univ. Press, New York. vii + 656 pp.

  • Gamon, J. 1991. Report on the status in Washington of Silene spaldingii. Washington Natural Heritage Program, Dept. of Natural Resources, Olympia, WA. 52 pp.

  • Heidel, B. 1979. Endangered and threatened plants in the Northern Idaho BLM District. Unpublished report. 100 pp.

  • Heidel, B. 1980. Report for Silene spaldingii. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Office of Endangered Species, Portland, OR. 11 pp.

  • Heidel, B. 1995. Preliminary status report for Silene spaldingii (Spalding's catchfly), a candidate threatened species. Unpublished report (draft) submitted to accompany Montana comments on the 1993 Federal Register Notice of Review for plants. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena, Montana. 10 pp. plus appendices.

  • Heidel, B., and P. Lesica. 1993. Conservation strategy for Silene spaldingii. Unpublished grant proposal prepared for The Nature Conservancy. 3 pp.

  • Hitchcock, C.L. and B. Maguire. 1947. A revision of the North American species of Silene. University of Washington Publications in Biology 11: 1-132.

  • Hitchcock, C.L., A. Cronquist, M. Ownbey, and J.W. Thompson. 1964. Vascular plants of the Pacific Northwest. Part 2: Salicaceae to Saxifragaceae, by C.L. Hitchcock and A. Cronquist. Univ. Washington Press, Seattle. 597 pp.

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

  • Kagan, J.S. 1989. Draft species management guide for Silene spaldingii. Produced for Dept. of Agriculture for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest. Unpublished document on file at Oregon Natural Heritage Data Base, Portland, OR. 13 pp.

  • 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.

  • Kautz, D. R. 1981. Range and wildlife resources of Wild Horse Island, Flathead Lake, Montana. M.S. thesis. University of Montana, Missoula. 241 pp.

  • Kruckeberg, A. R. 1961. Artificial crosses of western North American Silenes. Brittonia 13. 305-333.

  • Lesica, P. 1988a. A preliminary study of the pollination biology of Spalding's catchfly in the Tobacco Valley, Lincoln County, Montana. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Montana/Wyoming Field Office, Helena, MT. 3 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1988b. Germination requirements and seedling biology of Spalding's Catchfly (Silene spaldingii). Unpublished paper prepared for The Nature Conservancy, Montana/Wyoming Office, Helena, MT. 2 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1988c. Monitoring Silene spaldingii on Dancing Prarie Preserve: 1988 progress report. Unpublished paper prepared for The Nature Conservancy, Montana/Wyoming Office, Helena, MT. 4 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1988d. Monitoring Silene spaldingii on Wild Horse Island: 1988 progress report. Unpublished paper prepared for The Nature Conservancy, Montana/Wyoming Office, Helena, MT. 3 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1991a. Inbreeding depression and the importance of pollinators to the threatened plant Silene spaldingii (Caryophyllaceae). The Nature Conservancy, Montana Field Office, Helena. 15 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1992e. Monitoring Silene spaldingii on Dancing Prairie Preserve: 1992 progress report. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Montana Field Office, Helena, Montana. 9 pp. plus charts.

  • Lesica, P. 1992f. Monitoring Silene spaldingii on Wild Horse Island: 1992 progress report. Unpublished report. The Nature Conservancy, Montana Field Office, Helena, Montana. 8 pp. plus charts.

  • Lesica, P. 1992i. The effects of fire on Silene spaldingii at Dancing Prairie Preserve, 1992 progress report. The Nature Conservancy, Helena, Montana. 15 pp.

  • Lesica, P. 1993c. Loss of fitness resulting from pollinator exclusion in Silene spaldingii (Caryophyllaceae). Madrono 40(4)193-201.

  • Lesica, P. 1994c. Monitoring Silene spaldingii on Dancing Prairie Preserve: 1993 progress report prepared for The Nature Conservancy, Helena, Montana. 10 pp.

  • Lesica, P. No date. Selfing, inbreeding depression and the importance of pollinators to the threatened plant, SILENE SPALDINGII (CARYOPHYLLACEAE). The Nature Conservancy, Montana Field Office, Helena. 18 pp.

  • Lesica, P., and B. Heidel. 1996. Pollination biology of Silene spaldingii. Unpublished report to Montana Field Office of The Nature Conservancy. Montana Natural Heritage Program, Helena. 16 pp.

  • Lorain, C.C. 1991. Report on the conservation status of Silene spaldingii in Idaho. Idaho Dept. of Fish and Game.

  • Mancuso, M., and R. Moseley. 1994. Vegetation description, rare plant inventory, and vegetation monitoring for Craig Mountain, Idaho. Unpublished report prepared for Bonneville Power Administration. 176 pp. [http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cdc/cdc_pdf/mancm94a.pdf]

  • Meinke, R.J. 1982. Threatened and Endangered Vascular Plants of Oregon: An Illustrated Guide. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Region 1, Portland, Oregon. 326 pp.

  • Morrison-Maierle. 1988. Draft Eureka airport master plan study: Chapter 5 - environmental assessment. 32 pp plus appendices.

  • Peck, M.E. 1961. A manual of the higher plants of Oregon. 2nd edition. Binsford & Mort, Portland, Oregon. 936 pp.

  • Schassberger, L. A. 1988. Report on the conservation status of ilene spaldingii, a candidate threatened species. Unpublished report to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Montana Natural Heritage Program. Helena, MT. 71 pp. plus appendices.

  • Siddall, J. L., and K. L. Chambers. 1978. Status report for Silene spaldingii. Oregon Rare and Endangered Plant Program, Lake Oswego, OR. Not paged.

  • 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.

  • Washington Natural Heritage Program. 1994. Endangered, threatened and sensitive vascular plants of Washington. Dept. of Natural Resources, Olympia, Washington. 52 pp.

  • Watson, S. 1875. Revision of the genus CEANOTHUS and descriptions of new plants, with a synopsis of the western species of SILENE. Proceedings American Academy Science 10:333-350.

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