For Immediate Release, October 2, 2013
Contact: Jaclyn Lopez, (727) 490-9190, firstname.lastname@example.org
Two Rare Florida Flowers Proposed for Endangered Species Act Protection
With 2,707 Acres of Critical Habitat
MIAMI— The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed Endangered Species Act protection today for two flowers from Miami-Dade County. The proposal to protect Florida brickell-bush and Carter’s small-flowered flax results from an agreement with the Center for Biological Diversity to fast-track protection decisions for 757 imperiled species across the country. The two rare flowers are found near Everglades National Park and nowhere else on Earth.
“Part of what makes Florida so amazing is all the unique plants and animals that live in our state,” said Jaclyn Lopez, a Florida attorney at the Center. “And Endangered Species Act protection for these two lovely flowers will make sure their last remaining wild habitat remains safe for future generations.”
Both flowers have been on a waiting list for federal protection since 1985. The proposal to protect them was prompted by a 2011 agreement between the Center and the Fish and Wildlife Service that expedited protection decisions for all the species on the candidate waiting list and for a host of other species that had been petitioned for protection.
Carter’s small-flowered flax is 1 foot tall and has yellow petals. At least five populations have been lost to development. There are seven surviving populations and a total population size of only 1,300 flowers.
Florida brickell-bush is a white, perennial flower in the aster family that grows to more than 3 feet in height. At least nine known populations have been wiped out by development. There are 17 known surviving populations. The total number of plants is estimated to have declined by 50 percent since 1999, and the overall population is estimated at 2,100 to 3,700 plants.
Both flowers are threatened by conversion of native habitat for urban and agricultural development and by inadequate fire management and invasive plant species.
The scientific name of Florida brickell-bush is Brickellia mosieri, and the scientific name of Carter’s small-flowered flax is Linum carteri var. carteri.
The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 625,000 members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.