Parachute beardtongue (Penstemon debilis)

Federal Register | Recovery | Critical Habitat | Conservation Plans | Petitions | Life History

Listing Status:   

Where Listed: WHEREVER FOUND

General Information

Parachute beardtongue was discovered in 1986, and was first described by OíKane and Anderson in 1987. Parachute beardtongue is a mat-forming perennial herb with thick, succulent, bluish leaves, each about 0.8 in. (2 cm) long and 0.4 in. (1 cm) wide. Plants produce shoots that run along underground, forming what appear as new plants at short distances away. Individual Parachute beardtongue plants are able to survive on the steep, unstable, shale slopes by responding with stem elongation as leaves are buried by the shifting talus. Buried stems progressively elongate down slope from the initial point of rooting to a surface sufficiently stable to allow the development of a tuft of leaves and flowers. The funnel-shaped flowers are white to pale lavender, and bloom during June and July. Parachute beardtongue plants produce a small number of seeds that are dispersed by gravity. The species is threatened primarily by oil and gas development and small population sizes.

  • States/US Territories in which the Parachute beardtongue is known to or is believed to occur:  Colorado
  • US Counties in which the Parachute beardtongue is known to or is believed to occur:  View All
 
Current Listing Status Summary
Status Date Listed Lead Region Where Listed
08/26/2011 Mountain-Prairie Region (Region 6)

» Federal Register Documents

Federal Register Documents
Date Citation Page Title
07/27/2011 76 FR 45054 45075 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Determination of Endangered Status for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa Skyrocket) and Threatened Status for Penstemon debilis (Parachute Beardtongue) and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque Phacelia); Final Rule
03/27/2012 77 FR 18157 18172 Designation of Critical Habitat for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa skyrocket), Penstemon debilis (Parachute beardtongue), and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque phacelia):Revised proposed rule; reopening of comment period.
08/13/2012 77 FR 48367 48418 Designation of Critical Habitat for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa skyrocket), Penstemon debilis (Parachute beardtongue), and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque phacelia); Final Rule
06/13/2002 67 FR 40657 40679 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Review of Species That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Recycled Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions
09/19/1997 62 FR 49398 49397 Review of Plant and Animal Taxa
09/30/1993 58 FR 51144 51190 ETWP; Review of Plant Taxa for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species
02/28/1996 61 FR 7597 7613 ETWP; Review of Plant and Animal Taxa That Are Candidates for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species
09/12/2006 71 FR 53756 53835 Review of Native Species That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions
05/11/2005 70 FR 24870 24934 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Review of Native Species That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions; Proposed Rule
12/10/2008 73 FR 75176 75244 Review of Native Species That Are Candidates for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions; Proposed Rule
06/23/2010 75 FR 35721 35746 Listing Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa Skyrocket) as Endangered Throughout Its Range, and Listing Penstemon debilis (Parachute Beardtongue) and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque Phacelia) as Threatened Throughout Their Range
12/06/2007 72 FR 69034 69106 Review of Native Species That Are Candidates for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions; Proposed Rule
02/21/1990 55 FR 6184 6229 ETWP; Review of Plant Taxa for Listing as Endangered or Threatened Species; Notice of Review; 55 FR 6184 6229
10/30/2001 66 FR 54808 54832 ETWP; Review of Plant and Animal Species That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened,Annual Notice of Findings on Recycled Petitions, and Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions; Proposed Rule
07/27/2011 76 FR 45078 45128 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Designation of Critical Habitat for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa skyrocket), Penstemon debilis (Parachute beardtongue), and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque phacelia); Proposed Rule
10/25/1999 64 FR 57535 57547 Review of Plant and Animal Taxa That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Recycled Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions
05/04/2004 69 FR 24876 24904 Review of Species That Are Candidates or Proposed for Listing as Endangered or Threatened; Annual Notice of Findings on Resubmitted Petitions; Annual Description of Progress on Listing Actions

» Recovery

Current Recovery Plan(s)
Date Title Plan Action Status Plan Status
01/23/2013 RECOVERY OUTLINE: Parachute beardtongue (Penstemon debilis) Recovery efforts in progress, but no implementation information yet to display Outline

» Critical Habitat

Date Citation Page Title Document Type Status
08/13/2012 77 FR 48367 48418 Designation of Critical Habitat for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa skyrocket), Penstemon debilis (Parachute beardtongue), and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque phacelia); Final Rule Final Rule Final designated
07/27/2011 76 FR 45078 45128 Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Designation of Critical Habitat for Ipomopsis polyantha (Pagosa skyrocket), Penstemon debilis (Parachute beardtongue), and Phacelia submutica (DeBeque phacelia); Proposed Rule Proposed Rule Not Required

To learn more about critical habitat please see http://ecos.fws.gov/crithab

» Conservation Plans

No conservation plans have been created for Parachute beardtongue.

» Petitions

» Life History

Habitat Requirements

Parachute beardtongue seems to be adapted to natural physical disturbance . Many of the characteristics that are most similar among sites promote continual shifting of the substrate: steep slopes, unstable surface layers of broken shale rubble, and no surface soil. The plants grow on steep, oil shale outcrop slopes of white shale talus at 8,000 to 9,000 ft (2,400 to 2,700 m) in elevation on the southern escarpment of the Roan Plateau above the Colorado River and the town of Parachute, Colorado. The Roan Plateau falls into the geologic structural basin known as the Piceance Basin. Average annual precipitation at Parachute, Colorado, is 12.75 in (32.4 cm), which is considered a high desert climate. Parachute beardtongue is found only on the Parachute Creek Member of the Green River Formation. Parachute beardtongue is often found growing with other species endemic to the Green River formation, including Mentzelia rhizomata (Roan Cliffs blazingstar), Astragalus lutosus (dragon milkvetch), Festuca dasyclada (Utah fescue), and Thalictrum heliophilum (sun-loving meadowrue), as well as several non-endemics.

Movement / Home Range

The historical range and distribution for this species is unknown. All of the currently known occurrences occupy about 91.8 ac (37.2 ha) on the Green River geologic formation in Garfield County, Colorado. Although this formation is underground throughout most of the Piceance Basin, it is exposed on much of the southern face of the Roan Plateau, to which the plant is restricted. The total area of the plantís geographic range is about 2 mi (3 km) wide and 17 mi (27 km) long. Six occurrences of Parachute beardtongue were found between 1986 and 2005; two of them are no longer viable. It is likely that unknown occurrences exist, because many areas are inaccessible to surveyors due to cliff-side terrain or private land ownership or both.

Reproductive Strategy

Parachute beardtongue plants require cross pollination, and have many different pollinators that vary between occurrences. None of the pollinators are specialists to Parachute beardtongue, nor are any of them rare.

» Other Resources

NatureServe Explorer Species Reports -- NatureServe Explorer is a source for authoritative conservation information on more than 50,000 plants, animals and ecological communtities of the U.S and Canada. NatureServe Explorer provides in-depth information on rare and endangered species, but includes common plants and animals too. NatureServe Explorer is a product of NatureServe in collaboration with the Natural Heritage Network.

ITIS Reports -- ITIS (the Integrated Taxonomic Information System) is a source for authoritative taxonomic information on plants, animals, fungi, and microbes of North America and the world.

FWS Digital Media Library -- The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's National Digital Library is a searchable collection of selected images, historical artifacts, audio clips, publications, and video.