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Endangered Plant Species List

spreading globe flowerIn 1989, the Endangered Plant Species List Act was enacted. The act directed the Division of Parks and Forestry to create the State’s first official list of plant species endangered in New Jersey. One reason for creation of the list was to more effectively and efficiently incorporate the preservation of New Jersey’s natural diversity into government planning functions. Endangered plants were defined in the act as native species whose survival in the State or nation is in jeopardy, including plant species listed, proposed or under review by the federal government as endangered or threatened in the United States, any additional species known or believed to be rare throughout its worldwide range, and any species having five or fewer extant populations within the State.

In 1991 the Endangered Plant Species List was first adopted through rulemaking. Since then, the list has been periodically updated based on new information in the Department’s Natural Heritage Database. Although the list itself and the rule of which it is part do not provide any protection for officially listed species, several regulatory agencies in DEP responsible for protecting plant habitat have incorporated the Endangered Plant Species List into their criteria for review of permits. The list of Special Plants of New Jersey contains all 356 native New Jersey plant species on the Endangered Plant Species List, as well as information on all other plants currently tracked by the Natural Heritage Database.

Endangered Plant Species Research and Management

swamp pinkIn 1986, the ONLM signed a cooperative agreement with the Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service, which directs the ONLM to perform research and conduct management on globally endangered plant species of New Jersey. As a result of this agreement, the ONLM has received approximately $300,000 in federally matching funds from the Service, primarily through the provisions of the federal Endangered Species Act. These funds have been used to conduct field surveys, prepare management plans, monitor populations, and perform management of critical populations and their habitats. One on-going project funded through our Section 6 cooperative agreement is annual monitoring and management of the State’s last surviving population of the state and federally endangered American chaffseed (Schwalbea americana), located on a precarious roadside in Brendan T. Byrne State Forest. New Jersey’s population of S. americana is now the only population north of North Carolina. Another plant that has recently received considerable attention is the state endangered and federally threatened sea-beach amaranth (Amaranthus pumilus). This species occupies the specialized and dynamic habitat of open sandy beach between the high tide line and the toe of the primary dune, and recently reappeared in NJ after almost a century of absence. The List of ONLM Publications includes many of the reports resulting from this federally supported research and management program. Contact the ONLM to inquire about publications that interest you.

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Copyright © State of New Jersey, 1996-2004
Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 402
Trenton, NJ 08625-0402

Last Updated: January 4, 2007

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