Submitted to: Oklahoma Academy of Science Proceedings
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 9/9/2003
Publication Date: 7/30/2004
Citation: Springer, T.L. and Tyrl, R.J. 2003. Status of phlox oklahomensis (polemoniaceae) in northwestern Oklahoma and adjacent Kansas: Assessment 20 years later. Proceedings Oklahoma Academy of Science. 83:89-92. Interpretive Summary: Observations in 1980-1982 indicated that Phlox oklahomensis, at one time considered a candidate for federal protection as a threatened plant species, was not threatened. A second field survey was conducted in April 2002 and 2003. Populations of P. oklahomensis occur in 67 land survey sections in Woods County and 39 sections in Woodward County, Oklahoma, and 7 sections in Comanche County, Kansas. Populations range in size from those with a few scattered individuals to those with hundreds of plants. These populations appear stable and contain both vegetative and reproductive plants. Based on this survey and intensive observations of several populations, we suggest an Oklahoma Natural Heritage Inventory State ranking S2S3 rather than the current S1S2 ranking (the S in S2 stands for State).
Technical Abstract: Phlox oklahomensis Wherry was initially considered a candidate as a threatened plant species under the guidelines of the 1973 Threatened and Endangered Species Act. Studies conducted in 1980-1982 indicated that the species was not threatened, but, that future monitoring of Phlox oklahomensis was appropriate. Because 20 years have elapsed since the original census and a major fire and a number of periods of drought have occurred in the area, we undertook another survey of the species. The objective of the work reported here was to compare the geographic range of P. oklahomensis in northwestern Oklahoma in 1983 to that of today and to reassess the status of this species after a 20-year period. Phlox oklahomensis continues to flourish in northwestern Oklahoma and adjacent Kansas. We encountered populations in 113 sections as compared to 79 in 1980-82. Based on our census in 2002-2003 and the close observation of several populations, we suggest an Oklahoma Natural Heritage Inventory State ranking S2S3 rather than the current S1S2 ranking (the S in S2 stands for State).