• The Point Reyes Beach as viewed from the Point Reyes Headlands

    Point Reyes

    National Seashore California

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Point Reyes National Seashore's First "Rare-Plant-A-Thon"

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Date: May 15, 2001
Contact: John Dell'Osso, 415-464-5135

On May 5th and 6th, Point Reyes National Seashore, with the support of the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, California Native Plant Society, and the Point Reyes National Seashore Association, hosted its first "Rare-Plant-A-Thon". Thirty eight volunteers arrived over the two days, traveling from Sacramento, Davis, San Francisco and even as far as Death Valley National Park! The group had a diversity of botanical experience and background.

The Rare-Plant-A-Thon is an effort to inventory unrecorded rare plant populations throughout the 71,000-acre Point Reyes National Seashore. Point Reyes is host to over 850 species of flowering plants, which represents approximately 16% of the plant species known to occur in California. Point Reyes has a diversity of habitats and lies in a temperate region which lends itself to tremendous diversity. Thirty-four of the species reach their southern range limit at Point Reyes and eleven reach their northern limit. At least 61 species occur nowhere else in the world!

Four of the plant species are listed as Federally-Endangered or Threatened and 21 are listed as Species of Concern. An additional 24 plant species are listed by the California Native Plant Society.

The following are the highlights of what was accomplished over the weekend:

  • 8 unrecorded rare plant populations were recorded and mapped – including one new addition to the Seashore – Humboldt Bay owl’s-clover (Castilleja ambigua ssp. humboltiensis).
  • Known populations of Coast lily (Lilium maritimum), Point Reyes horkelia (Horkelia marinensis), and San Francisco owl’s-clover (Triphysaria floribunda) were mapped and monitored.
  • The endangered Beach layia, (Layia carnosa), was censused and mapped using the Global Positioning System (GPS).

As a follow-up to this successful event, the next "Rare-Plant-A-Thon" is scheduled for June 30 and July 1, 2001. For more information about this upcoming event, call (415) 464-5221.


Did You Know?

Bull elephant seal © Richard Allen

Four species of pinnipeds (seals and sea lions) rest onshore or breed at Point Reyes: the Northern elephant seal (Mirounga angustirostris), the harbor seal (Phoca vitulina), the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), and the Steller sea lion (Eumetopias jubatus). More...