Cochise Pincushion cactus (Coryphantha robbinsiorum)

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

Listing Status:   


General Information

A small (1-1.5 cm above ground) unbranched cactus, usually not more than 4 cm wide. Has "cottony" areoles and bright white radial spines. Central spines usually lacking, but each areole may have 1-3 slender spines. Most of the stem remains underground all year, during dry periods the portion of the plant exposed may shrink and become flush with the ground surface.

  • States/US Territories in which the Cochise Pincushion cactus, Wherever found is known to or is believed to occur:  Arizona
  • US Counties in which the Cochise Pincushion cactus, Wherever found is known to or is believed to occur:  View All
  • Countries in which the the Cochise Pincushion cactus, Wherever found is known to occur:  Mexico
  • Additional species information
Current Listing Status Summary
Status Date Listed Lead Region Where Listed
1986-01-09 Southwest Region (Region 2) Wherever found

» Federal Register Documents

Federal Register Documents
Date Citation Page Title
2006-04-21 00:00:00.0 71 FR 20714 20716 5-Year Review of 25 Southwestern Species
1985-03-06 00:00:00.0 50 FR 9083 9086 Proposal to Determine Coryphantha robbinsorum (Cochise Pincushion Cactus) to be Thr. Species; 50 FR 9083-9086
1986-01-09 00:00:00.0 51 FR 952 956 Determination of Thr. Status for Coryphantha robbinsorum; 51 FR 952 956

» Recovery

Current Recovery Plan(s)
Date Title Plan Action Status Plan Status
1993-09-27 Cochise Pincushion Cactus View Implementation Progress Final
Other Recovery Documents
Date Citation Page Title Document Type
2006-04-21 71 FR 20714 20716 5-Year Review of 25 Southwestern Species
  • Notice 5-year Review, Initiation
Five Year Review
Date Title
2007-04-06 Cochise Pincushion Cactus 5-Year Review

» Critical Habitat

No critical habitat rules have been published for the Cochise Pincushion cactus.

» Conservation Plans

No conservation plans have been created for Cochise Pincushion cactus.

» Petitions

» Life History

Habitat Requirements

Found only on one type of high-calcium limestone outcrop in the Mexican Highland vegetation community at elevations of 1,280-1,433 meters (4,200 feet). Soils are thin with a soil crust of lichens, mosses, and algae, and bedrock is very near the surface at occupied sites. Plants tend to be in the open, not underneath other plants. Overall vegetation at occupied sites is sparse.

Movement / Home Range

Known range is very small and limited. Individuals are not distributed across all potential habitat, so there are likely microsite factors also controlling distribution. Insect predation (moths and beetles) is a significant cause of mortality to adult plants.

Reproductive Strategy

Flowering begins in mid-March extending to mid-April. Flowers are pale yellow to parchment in color, and 10-18.5 mm in length. Fruits are spheroid to ovoid, initially orange-red to scarlet but turn brownish when dry. Each fruit has approximately 20 seeds. Seedling mortality is high, with rainfall an important factor. Plants achieve sexual maturity at 17-28 mm in diameter. The number of flowers produced increases with the age and size of the plant and are also positively correlated with rainfall.


Very vulnerable to ground disturbing activities that can damage or kill individual cacti. The thin soils may be disturbed by vehicle use, livestock trampling, or humans hiking across the landscape. The normally sparse native vegetation provides some protection from wildfire; however, invasive non-native plants that establish and increase overall plant density increase the risk of damaging fires in the habitat. Losses of adults to drought or predation restricts the ability of a local population to survive over time.

» 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.