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Classification
Scientific Name: South Florida Pine Flatwoods
Unique Identifier: CES411.381

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Summary: This system is endemic to Florida, ranging from Lee, Desoto, Highlands, and Okeechobee counties southward. It was once an extensive system within its historic range. The vegetation is naturally dominated by Pinus elliottii var. densa, being largely outside the natural range of Pinus serotina, Pinus elliottii var. elliottii, and Pinus palustris. In natural condition, examples are generally open with a variety of low shrub and grass species forming a dense ground cover. Frequent, low-intensity fire was the dominant natural ecological force, but most areas have undergone long periods without fire, resulting in greater dominance of shrubs and saw palmetto, as well as denser canopies of slash pine.

Classification Approach: International Terrestrial Ecological Systems Classification (ITESC)

Classification Comments: No associations have currently been described in the USNVC for this system. More information is needed. The floristic composition of this system overlaps Florida Dry Prairie (CES203.380); the primary difference lies in taller and denser shrub cover (especially of Serenoa repens) (Huffman and Judd 1998). There is considerable variation between wet and "non-wet" flatwoods implied in this system.

Similar Ecological Systems
Unique Identifier Name
CES203.380 Florida Dry Prairie
CES411.367 South Florida Pine Rockland



Classifiers

Land Cover Class: Mixed Upland and Wetland
Spatial Pattern: Matrix
Natural/Seminatural: No
Vegetated ( > 10% vascular cover):
Upland: Yes
Wetland: Yes
Isolated Wetland: No

Diagnostic Classifiers
Primary Classifier Secondary Classifier
Needle-Leaved Tree  

Non-diagnostic Classifiers
Primary Classifier Secondary Classifier
Woody-Herbaceous  
Extensive Wet Flat  

At-Risk Species Reported for this Ecological System
Scientific Name
  (Common Name)
NatureServe Global Status U.S. Endangered Species Act Status
Aletris bracteata
  (Bracted Colicroot)
G2  
Campanula floridana
  (Florida Bellflower)
G3?Q  
Coreopsis floridana
  (Florida Tickseed)
G3G4  
Drymaeus dormani
  (Manatee Treesnail)
G2G3  
Dyschoriste angusta
  (Pineland Dyschoriste)
G2G3  
Elytraria caroliniensis var. angustifolia
  (Narrowleaf Carolina Scalystem)
G4T2  
Eriocaulon ravenelii
  (Ravenel's Pipewort)
G3G4  
Eupatorium mikanioides
  (Semaphore Thoroughwort)
G3?  
Justicia angusta
  (Pineland Water-willow)
G3Q  
Lachnocaulon minus
  (Small's Bogbutton)
G3G4  
Ludwigia curtissii
  (Curtiss' Seedbox)
G3G4  
Nemastylis floridana
  (Fall-flowering Ixia)
G2  
Nolina atopocarpa
  (Florida Bear-grass)
G3  
Pteroglossaspis ecristata
  (Giant Orchid)
G2G3  
Puma concolor coryi
  (Florida Panther)
G5T1 LE: Listed endangered
Schizachyrium stoloniferum
  (Creeping Bluestem)
G3G4Q  
Schoenolirion albiflorum
  (White Sunnybell)
G3  
Spiranthes brevilabris
  (Texas Ladies'-tresses)
G1G2  
Zephyranthes simpsonii
  (Rain Lily)
G2G3  

Vegetation Composition (incomplete)
Species Name Rounded Global Status Growth Form Stratum Char-
acter-
istic
Domi-nant Con-stant
Cover Class %
Con-
stancy
%
Pinus elliottii var. densa T4 Needle-leaved tree Tree canopy    
 
 
Ilex glabra G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Lyonia fruticosa G4 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Quercus minima G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Vaccinium myrsinites G5 Broad-leaved evergreen shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Serenoa repens G4 Palm shrub Shrub/sapling (tall & short)    
 
 
Pluchea rosea G4 Flowering forb Herb (field)    
 
 
Pteroglossaspis ecristata G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Spiranthes brevilabris G1 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Zephyranthes simpsonii G2 Flowering forb Herb (field)      
 
 
Aristida beyrichiana G5 Graminoid Herb (field)    
 
 


Animal Species Reported for this Ecological System
Scientific Name
  (Common Name)
Global Status U.S. Endangered Species Act Status Charact-
eristic
Exotic
Cemophora coccinea
  (Scarletsnake)
G5      
Coluber constrictor
  (North American Racer)
G5      
Crotalus adamanteus
  (Eastern Diamond-backed Rattlesnake)
G4      
Diadophis punctatus
  (Ringneck Snake)
G5      
Drymaeus dormani
  (Manatee Treesnail)
G2G3      
Pantherophis guttatus
  (Red Cornsnake)
G5      
Puma concolor coryi
  (Florida Panther)
G5T1 LE: Listed endangered    
Sistrurus miliarius
  (Pygmy Rattlesnake)
G5      
Storeria dekayi
  (Dekay's Brownsnake)
G5      
Thamnophis sauritus
  (Eastern Ribbonsnake)
G5      


Distribution
Color legend for Distribution Map
Nation: United States
United States Distribution: FL
Global Range: This system is found in southern Florida, extending north to mid-peninsula (e.g., Lee, Desoto, Highlands, and Okeechobee counties).

Biogeographic Divisions
Division Code and Name Primary Occurrence Status
203-Gulf and Atlantic Coastal Plain C: Confident or certain
411-Caribbean C: Confident or certain

The Nature Conservancy's Conservation Ecoregions
Code Name Occurrence Status
54 Tropical Florida Confident or certain
55 Florida Peninsula Confident or certain

MRLC 2000 Mapzones
Code Name Occurrence Status
56 Floridian Coastal Plain Confident or certain

National Mapping
ESLF Code (Ecological System Lifeform): 9115
ESP Code (Environmental Site Potential): 1446
EVT Code (Existing Vegetation Type): 2446

West Landfire Legend: No
East Landfire Legend: Yes

Authors/Contributors
Element Description Edition Date: 14Jan2014
Element Description Author(s): R. Evans and C. Nordman

Ecological data developed by NatureServe and its network of natural heritage programs (see Local Programs) and other contributors and cooperators (see Sources).


References
  • Brewer, S. 2008. Declines in plant species richness and endemic plant species in longleaf pine savannas invaded by Imperata cylindrica. Biological Invasions 10:1257-1264.

  • Comer, P., D. Faber-Langendoen, R. Evans, S. Gawler, C. Josse, G. Kittel, S. Menard, C. Nordman, M. Pyne, M. Reid, M. Russo, K. Schulz, K. Snow, J. Teague, and R. White. 2003-present. Ecological systems of the United States: A working classification of U.S. terrestrial systems. NatureServe, Arlington, VA.

  • Duever, M. J., J. E. Carlson, J. F. Meeder, L. C. Duever, L. H. Gunderson, L. A. Riopelle, T. R. Alexander, R. L. Myers, and D. P. Spangler. 1986. The Big Cypress National Preserve. National Audubon Society Research Report No. 8. National Audubon Society, New York. 444 pp.

  • FNAI [Florida Natural Areas Inventory]. 2010a. Guide to the natural communities of Florida: 2010 edition. Florida Natural Areas Inventory, Tallahassee, FL. 228 pp.

  • Huffman, J. M., and W. S. Judd. 1998. Vascular flora of Myakka River State Park, Sarasota and Manatee counties, Florida. Castanea 63:25-50.

  • McPherson, B. F. 1986. Vegetation map of the Big Cypress National Preserve. Figure 5.1 [back cover sleeve] in: M. J. Duever, J. E. Carlson, J. F. Meeder, L. C. Duever, L. H. Gunderson, L. A. Riopelle, T. R. Alexander, R. L. Myers, and D. P. Spangler. The Big Cypress National Preserve. National Audubon Society Research Report No. 8. National Audubon Society, New York.

  • NatureServe. 2011a. Metrics for rapid assessment of the ecological integrity of longleaf pine-dominated communities in the southeastern United States. Report conducted by NatureServe for USDA Forest Service, Region 8. NatureServe, Durham, NC.

  • Noel, J. M., W. J. Platt, and E. B. Moser. 1998. Structural characteristics of old- and second-growth stands of longleaf pine (Pinus palustris) in the Gulf Coastal region of the U.S.A. Conservation Biology 12:533-548.

  • Oswalt, C. M., J. A. Cooper, D. G. Brockway, H. W. Brooks, J. L. Walker, K. F. Connor, S. N. Oswalt, and R. C. Conner. 2012. History and current condition of longleaf pine in the southern United States. General Technical Report SRS-166. USDA Forest Service, Southern Research Station, Asheville, NC. 51 pp. [http://www.srs.fs.usda.gov/pubs/42259]

  • Stout, I. J., and W. R. Marion. 1993. Pine flatwoods and xeric pine forests of the southern (lower) coastal plain. Pages 373-446 in: W. H. Martin, S. G. Boyce, and A. C. Echternacht, editors. 1993. Biodiversity of the southeastern United States: Lowland terrestrial communities. John Wiley and Sons, New York.

  • Van Lear, D. H., W. D. Carroll, P. R. Kapeluck, and R. Johnson. 2005. History and restoration of the longleaf pine-grassland ecosystem: Implications for species at risk. Forest Ecology and Management 211:150-165.

  • Wahlenberg, W. G. 1946. Longleaf pine, its use, ecology, regeneration, protection, growth and management. Charles Lathrop Pack Forestry Foundation, Washington, DC. 429 pp.


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