Uinta Basin hookless cactus (Sclerocactus wetlandicus)

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

Listing Status:   


General Information

Uinta Basin hookless cactus - Sclerocactus wetlandicus S. wetlandicus is a barrel-shaped cactus that ranges from 4 to 18 centimeters (cm) (1.5 to 7 inches (in.)) tall, with exceptional plants up to 30 cm (12 in.) tall. The stems have typically 12 to 15 ribs that extend from the ground to the tip of the plant. Along the ribs are areoles (small, cushion-like areas) with hooked spines radiating out (Heil and Porter 2004). There are two types of spines, radial and central, defined by the size and position on the plant (74 FR 47112, September 15, 2009). The 6 to 14 radial spines are located around the margin of the areole, extending in a plane parallel to the body of the plant. The radial spines are white or gray to light brown, and are 6 to 20 mm (0.24 to 0.8 in.) long. The one to five central spines (usually three) are 15 to 30 mm (0.5 to 2.0 in.) long, are generally longer than radial spines, and extend from the center of the areole. The central spines include abaxial and lateral forms. Abaxial spines are typically single and are noticeably bent at an angle usually less than 90 degrees. Lateral spines are usually present in pairs on either side of the abaxial spine, but are more or less straight and diverge from the abaxial spine at an acute angle (usually 20 to 50 degrees). The funnel-shaped flowers usually have pink to violet tepals (petal-like flower parts not differentiated into petals and sepals) with yellow stamens (the male reproductive organ of the flower), and are 2 to 5 cm (0.8 to 2 in.) long and 2 to 5 cm (0.8 to 2 in.) in diameter (74 FR 47112, September 15, 2009). The fruit is short, barrel-shaped, reddish or reddish grey when ripe, 7 to 12 mm (0.3 to 0.5 in.) wide, and 9 to 25 mm (0.35 to 1.0 in.) long.

  • States/US Territories in which the Uinta Basin hookless cactus, Wherever found is known to or is believed to occur:  Utah
  • US Counties in which the Uinta Basin hookless cactus, Wherever found is known to or is believed to occur:  View All
  • USFWS Refuges in which the Uinta Basin hookless cactus, Wherever found is known to occur:  Ouray National Wildlife Refuge
  • Additional species information
Current Listing Status Summary
Status Date Listed Lead Region Where Listed
2009-09-15 Mountain-Prairie Region (Region 6) Wherever found

» Federal Register Documents

Federal Register Documents
Date Citation Page Title
2009-09-15 00:00:00.0 74 FR 47112 47117 Taxonomic Change of Sclerocactus Glaucus to Three Separate Species
2006-12-14 00:00:00.0 71 FR 75215 75220 90-Day Finding on a Petition To Remove the Uinta Basin Hookless Cactus From the List of Endangered and Threatened Plants; 90-Day Finding on a Petition To List the Pariette Cactus as Threatened or Endangered
2016-05-27 00:00:00.0 81 FR 33698 33700 ETWP; Initiation of 5-Year Status Reviews of 21 Species in the Mountain-Prairie Region
2007-09-18 00:00:00.0 72 FR 53211 53222 12-month Finding on a Petition To List Sclerocactus brevispinus (Pariette cactus) as an Endangered or Threatened Species; Taxonomic Change From Sclerocactus glaucus to Sclerocactus brevispinus, S. glaucus, and S. wetlandicus

» Recovery

Current Recovery Plan(s)
Date Title Plan Action Status Plan Status
2010-04-14 Sclerocactus wetlandicus (Uinta Basin hookless cactus) Recovery Outline Recovery efforts in progress, but no implementation information yet to display Outline
Other Recovery Documents
Date Citation Page Title Document Type
2016-05-27 81 FR 33698 33700 ETWP; Initiation of 5-Year Status Reviews of 21 Species in the Mountain-Prairie Region
  • Notice 5-year Review, Initiation
Five Year Review
Date Title
2008-03-28 Uinta Basin hookless cactus 5-Year Review

» Critical Habitat

No critical habitat rules have been published for the Uinta Basin hookless cactus.

» Conservation Plans

No conservation plans have been created for Uinta Basin hookless cactus.

» Petitions

» Life History

Habitat Requirements

Sclerocactus wetlandicus is generally found on coarse soils derived from cobble and gravel river and stream terrace deposits, or rocky surfaces on mesa slopes at 1,350 to 1,900 meters (4,400 to 6,200 feet) in elevation (Service 1990; Heil and Porter 1994, 2004).

Reproductive Strategy

A broad assemblage of native bees and possibly other insects, including ants and beetles, pollinate Sclerocactus wetlandicus (Service 1990). Under pollination may be a problem for S. wetlandicus, but more studies are needed (Tepedino 2000).


Associated desert shrubland vegetation includes Atriplex confertifolia, Pleuraphis jamesii, Artemisia nova, and Achnatherum hymenoides (Service 1990). Relative size of individual plants within a population covering one habitat type is primarily a function of the age of the plant and only secondarily a function of relative site quality (Service 1990).

» 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.

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.