Tucson, Arizona 2021-11-25 10:00:00 –
The endangered plant has almost disappeared from the San Pedro Liparian National Reserve, according to a Tucson-based environmental group suing the federal agency responsible for protecting it.
Robin Silver, co-founder of the Center for Biological Diversity, said two volunteer biologists in the group went looking for Huachuca umbel plants on November 11th, but they were empty.
Silver fears that this decline corresponds to the “local extinction” of rare semi-aquatic plants from a protected area about 80 miles southeast of Tucson.
“I don’t think the species is complete, but losing the core population raises serious concerns,” he said.
The umbel of Huachuca is a bright green herb-like member of the carrot family, with small tubular stems that can grow to a height of about 1 foot when fully moist.
Silver helped to be designated as an endangered species in 1993 by petitioning the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.
Important federal habitats include parts of the San Pedro River, the Santa Cruz River in the San Rafael Valley, Sonoita Creek, and several watersheds in the Huachuca Mountains west of Sierra Vista.
Umbel was also found in parts of Pima County, but habitat loss eliminated all known native populations in the county.
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