Sophora gypsophila - B.L. Turner & Powell
Gypsum Necklace
Taxonomic Status: Accepted
Related ITIS Name(s): Sophora gypsophila B.L. Turner & Powell (TSN 505294)
Unique Identifier: ELEMENT_GLOBAL.2.155365
Element Code: PDFAB3N040
Informal Taxonomy: Plants, Vascular - Flowering Plants - Pea Family
 
Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family Genus
Plantae Anthophyta Dicotyledoneae Fabales Fabaceae Sophora
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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: Sophora gypsophila
Conservation Status
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NatureServe Status

Global Status: G1
Global Status Last Reviewed: 03Aug2009
Global Status Last Changed: 19Feb1997
Rounded Global Status: G1 - Critically Imperiled
Reasons: This species' range in the United States is limited to less than 250 square km in western Texas and adjacent New Mexico. It is also known from a single disjunct site in Chihuahua, Mexico.
Nation: United States
National Status: N1

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 New Mexico (S1), Texas (S1)

Other Statuses

NatureServe Global Conservation Status Factors

Range Extent Comments: Chihuahua, Mexico between Coyame and Chihuahua City, and disjunct 300 km north in the Brokeoff Mountains and Upper Dog Canyon area of the Guadalupe Mountains in New Mexico and adjacent Culberson County, Texas (Northington 1976; Powell 1998; Sivinski 1999).

Number of Occurrences: 1 - 5
Number of Occurrences Comments: Seventeen EOs in New Mexico and two in Texas, but many close enough to each other to suggest they may be part of one fragmented population. Also known from one site in eastern Chihuahua.

Population Size Comments: Approximately 2000.

Overall Threat Impact: High
Overall Threat Impact Comments: Interest in oil and gas development has recently increased in the region and is a threat (USFWS 2007). May be susceptible to climatic change and decline if the area becomes drier.

Intrinsic Vulnerability Comments: Unpalatable to grazers (Sivinski 1999).

Other NatureServe Conservation Status Information

Distribution
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Global Range: Chihuahua, Mexico between Coyame and Chihuahua City, and disjunct 300 km north in the Brokeoff Mountains and Upper Dog Canyon area of the Guadalupe Mountains in New Mexico and adjacent Culberson County, Texas (Northington 1976; Powell 1998; Sivinski 1999).

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 NM, TX

Range Map
No map available.

National Distribution Outside of U.S. & Canada: Mexico

U.S. Distribution by County Help
State County Name (FIPS Code)
NM Eddy (35015), Otero (35035)
TX Culberson (48109)*, Hudspeth (48229)*
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
U.S. Distribution by Watershed Help
Watershed Region Help Watershed Name (Watershed Code)
13 Salt Basin (13050004)+, Upper Pecos-Black (13060011)+*
+ Natural heritage record(s) exist for this watershed
* Extirpated/possibly extirpated
Ecology & Life History
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Basic Description: A shrub, 6-20 dm tall, with silvery, leathery foliage and purple flowers.
Terrestrial Habitat(s): Savanna, Shrubland/chaparral
Habitat Comments: Var. gypsophila of northcentral Mexico is restricted to gypsum flats. Var. guadalupensis of the Guadalupe Mountains near the New Mexico/Texas border occurs on outcrops of pink, limy, fine-grained, slightly gypeous sandstone in Chihuahuan desert scrub and juniper savanna, associated with Tiquilia hispidissima (an obligate gypsophile) (Sivinski 1999; Poole et al. 2007). There may be a surface pavement of limestone gravel and cobble (Sivinski 1999). Var. guadalupensis was originally thought to occur on limestone soils without measurable amounts of gypsum (Northington 1976) but more recent study found the soils contain one percent gypsum (Sivinski and Knight 1996).
Economic Attributes Not yet assessed
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Management Summary
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Stewardship Overview: If oil and gas development occur in the area, prevent impacts to this species' habitat (Sivinski 1999).
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: 05Jan1997
NatureServe Conservation Status Factors Author: Juanita Ladyman, rev. A. Tomaino (2009)
Management Information Edition Date: 17Aug2009
Management Information Edition Author: Tomaino, A.

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
  • 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.

  • Northington, D.K. 1976. Evidence bearing on the origin of infraspecific disjunction in Sophora gypsophila (Fabaceae). Plant Systematics and Evolution 125: 233-244.

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

  • Powell, A.M. 1998. Trees and shrubs of the Trans-Pecos and adjacent areas. Univ. Texas Press, Austin. 498 pp.

  • Sivinski R. C., and P. J. Knight. 1996. Narrow endemism in the New Mexico flora. Pages 286-296 In: J. Maschinski, D. H. Hammond, and L. Holter [eds.], Southwestern rare and endangered plants: proceedings of the second conference. USDA Forest Service General Technical Report RM-GTR-283 Fort Collins, Colorado.

  • Sivinski, R. 1999. New Mexico Rare Plants: Sophora gypsophila var. guadalupensis (Guadalupe mescal bean). New Mexico Rare Plant Technical Council, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Online. Available: http://nmrareplants.unm.edu (accessed 2009).

  • Sivinski, R., and K. Lightfoot, eds. 1994. Inventory of the rare and endangered plants of New Mexico. 2nd edition. Miscellaneous Publication No. 3, New Mexico Forestry and Resources Conservation Division, New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Dept., Santa Fe. 46 pp.

  • Turner, B.L., and A.M. Powell. 1972. A new gypsophilic Sophora (Leguminosae) from northcentral Mexico and adjacent Texas. Phytologia 22(5): 419-423.

  • U.S. Forest Service (USFS). 2007. September 21 last update. Southwestern Region Sensitive Plants spreadsheet. Online. Available: www.fs.fed.us/r3/sfe/wildlife/R3_sensitive_plants.xls (accessed 2009).

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