ADVERTISEMENT
  About the SA Blog Network

Posts Tagged "rare plants"

Extinction Countdown

From Saved to Stolen: Thief Absconds with Extinct-in-the-Wild Water Lily

Nymphaea thermarum

This is why we can’t have nice species: Last week one of the world’s rarest plants was stolen from public display in London at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. An unknown thief or thieves walked in, pulled or dug up the plant and disappeared with it. The tiny thermal water lily (Nymphaea thermarum) is the [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Lawsuit to Remove Plant from Endangered Species List Completely Backfires

Indian Knob

Oh what a difference a few years makes. Just four years ago, the rare California shrub known as the Indian Knob mountain balm (Eriodictyon altissimum) was poised to drop off the endangered species list after the threats to its existence had mostly been abated. This week, however, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) decided [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Rare Naked Ladies Crocus Infected with Even Rarer Smutty Fungus

Urocystis colchici

Who knew botany and mycology could be so naughty? Naked ladies and smut have come to light in the U.K., but not in the way you might think. Yes, you can get your minds out of the gutter. We’re talking about the rare plant called the naked ladies crocus (Colchicum autumnale) and the even rarer [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Endangered Plants for Sale Online: Are They Legal?

Pritchardia remota

Did you know that it is often legal to buy and sell endangered species of plants through the mail? It’s true. Take, for example, the rare Hawaiian palm tree Pritchardia remota, one of several species collectively known as lou’lu. The tree, like many in its genus, is listed as endangered under the U.S. Endangered Species [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Deadly Snakes, Ugly Critters, Leonardo DiCaprio and Other Links from the Brink

Bothriechis guifarroi

A deadly but critically endangered snake, one of the world’s rarest birds and a heavily guarded flower are among the endangered species in the news this week. A New Snake with a Sad Story: A gorgeous but extremely dangerous new snake species has been discovered in Honduras. The new palm pit viper has been named [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Amazing Hawaiian Plant Loved by Tourists but Endangered by Climate Change

silversword

Every year up to two million people visit Haleakalā National Park in Hawaii, the only habitat for the endangered Haleakalā silversword (Argyroxyphium sandwicense macrocephalum), a spectacular and unusual plant that is now threatened by climate change. According to research published January 7 in Global Change Biology, these silverswords have suffered a dramatic population decline in [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Dung from Critically Endangered Kakapo Parrots Could Save Endangered Plant

kakapo

A fossilized sample of thousand-year-old parrot dung has revealed a previously unknown ecological relationship that could help save a threatened parasitic plant from extinction. Yup, conservation science is sometimes weird. The plant in question is called Dactylanthus taylorii (aka wood rose or Hades flower). A parasitic plant that only grows on the roots of about [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Last-of-Its-Kind Plant Could Get Federal Protection

There’s just one Franciscan manzanita (Arctostaphylos hookeri franciscana) plant left in the wild, and it could soon get protected status under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) this week proposed adding the extremely rare shrub to the ESA in response to a petition from the conservation organizations Wild Equity [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Ecuadorian Hydroelectric Plant Could Cause Extinction of Rare Plant

A planned hydroelectric project on Ecuador’s Rio Topo will generate 22 megawatts of energy for the surrounding area, but building it also will likely wipe out a rare plant. The plant, a mosslike liverwort called Myriocolea irrorata that lives only in the region, was first discovered on the banks of the Rio Topo in 1857 [...]

Keep reading »
Extinction Countdown

Rediscoveries, Recovery and Other Good News for Endangered Species

Every few months, I try to point out that the news about endangered species isn’t all doom and gloom. Oh sure, most of the stories I cover are pretty depressing, but then I come across the success stories that make it all worthwhile. Recovered First up, we have this week’s announcement that the Lake Erie [...]

Keep reading »

More from Scientific American

Scientific American MIND iPad

Give a Gift & Get a Gift - Free!

Give a 1 year subscription as low as $14.99

Subscribe Now >>

X

Email this Article

X