To promote recovery of Gentner’s fritillary by augmenting the size of existing populations and reintroducing a series of created populations into managed sites within the species’ historic range.
2000 - present
, a southern Oregon endemic, is threatened by loss of habitat due to urban and agricultural development, and habitat degradation due to exotic weed infestations. In response to concern regarding these threats, Gentner’s fritillary was listed as endangered by Oregon Department of Agriculture in 1995, and by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 1999. A Recovery Plan
(pdf document, 2.24 MB), specifying actions needed to recover this unique species and including recommendations for population augmentation and creation, was drafted by ODA and issued by USFWS in 2003.
In 2000–2002, protocols for harvesting small, asexually produced bulblets from mature plants of F. gentneri, with subsequent replacement of donor bulbs, were developed. An average of 50 bulblets were collected from each bulb, and monitoring of mother bulbs after replanting demonstrated that this procedure did not harm the mature bulbs.
In 2003, ODA Native Plant Conservation Program began cooperating with Bureau of Land Management, City of Jacksonville, and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to collect bulblets from representative populations in each Recovery Unit (as specified in the Recovery Plan). Collected bulblets are grown under controlled conditions at Oregon State University until they reach a size suitable for transplanting – we currently have more than 12,000 bulblets in cultivation.
Once bulblets are suitably mature, they are transplanted into selected sites in ecologically appropriate and administratively protected habitat. The City of Jacksonville and BLM have provided sites for transplanting, and we have transplanted over 13,000 bulbs and bulblets to date. Monitoring to evaluate the success of these outplanting projects was begun in 2005, and results are promising, with 33% of large bulbs and approximately 1% of small bulbs surviving at some sites in 2006.
Eight additional sites are scheduled to receive transplants in the next three years. We anticipate that our created populations will become established, reducing the threat of extinction, and contributing toward our goal of recovery for F. gentneri.
For more information about this species, visit the Gentner's fritillary plant profile.