Scientific Name: Tephrosia virginiana
Other/Previous Names: Goat's-rue
Taxonomy Group: Vascular Plants
Last COSEWIC Assessment: November 2009
Last COSEWIC Designation: Endangered
SARA Status: Schedule 1, Endangered
Image of Virginia Goat's-rue
The Virginia Goat's-rue is a perennial herb with one to several stems, which branch from a woody crown and long, slender, woody roots. Stems, branches and petioles are covered with fine, whitish hairs. The leaves are compound (consisting of multiple leaflets) and measure 5 to 15 cm long. The leaves also bear slender stalks about 1 cm long. Each leaf contains 15 to 25 leaflets, which are 11 to 31 mm long, 2 to 10 mm wide. Leaflet tops are smooth to hairy; the bottoms are densely hairy to woolly. Leaflets are bluish-, greyish- or yellowish-green at the tips. Short peduncles connect slower clusters to the main stem. Petals are pink and yellow with greenish buds, and measure 15 to 20 mm long.
Distribution and Population
The species is the most widely distributed of its genus in North America. It ranges north to New Hampshire, New York, southern Ontario, southern Michigan and southern Wisconsin. I t extends south to Florida and western Texas. The southern Ontario population is restricted to a few scattered sites on Norfolk Sand Plain near Turkey Point on Lake Erie's north shore. The largest Ontario population is in Turkey Point Provincial Park. It covers an area of 30 by 40 square metres. The site also consists of scattered patches growing in outlying areas. There is a small population in Charlotteville Township's Anderson Tract, and another on a small dune ridge near Vittoria.
Goat's Rue grows in well-drained soils in open oak and pine woods on ridges, sand prairies and sand dunes. It is also found on roadsides, abandoned fields and other rural sites. It can grow in shifting dunes, but is most abundant in partially stabilized areas. It seems to favour direct sunlight.
It appears to spread by seed and vegetative growth (from rhizomes). The rhizomes produce shoots above the ground and roots below. The Ontario populations consist of large patches and individual scattered plants. Collected seeds have almost a 100 % germination rate.
Shade cast by canopy-forming trees in oak savannas seems to be the primary factor affecting the species. One population in Charlotteville was evidently eliminated when a White Pine wood grew around it. Successional growth is due to suppression of natural fires. The Vittoria population is expanding toward a roadside. The population could be affected by sand removal, herbicide spraying, road widening. Weevils are hazardous to all Ontario populations. Field studies, in 1991 and 1994, revealed that most mature seed pods sampled in Ontario had been invaded by weevils. A majority of seeds had either aborted or been consumed as a result.
Federal ProtectionThe Virginia Goat's-rue is protected under the federal Species at Risk Act (SARA). More information about SARA, including how it protects individual species, is available in the Species at Risk Act: A Guide.
Provincial and Territorial Protection
Status of Recovery Planning
Recovery Strategies :
Name Recovery Strategy for the Virginia Goat's-rue (Tephrosia virginiana) in Canada
Status First posting on SAR registry
PLEASE NOTE: Not all COSEWIC reports are currently available on the SARA Public Registry. Most of the reports not yet available are status reports for species assessed by COSEWIC prior to May 2002. Other COSEWIC reports not yet available may include those species assessed as Extinct, Data Deficient or Not at Risk. In the meantime, they are available on request from the COSEWIC Secretariat.
7 record(s) found.
- COSEWIC Status Reports (1 record(s) found.)
- COSEWIC Assessments (1 record(s) found.)
- Response Statements (1 record(s) found.)
- Recovery Strategies (1 record(s) found.)
- COSEWIC Annual Reports (1 record(s) found.)
- Consultation Documents (1 record(s) found.)
- Recovery Document Posting Plans (1 record(s) found.)
COSEWIC Status Reports
COSEWIC Annual Reports
COSEWIC Annual Report - 2010 (2010)Under Canada’s Species At Risk Act (SARA), the foremost function of COSEWIC is to “assess the status of each wildlife species considered by COSEWIC to be at risk and, as part of the assessment, identify existing and potential threats to the species”. During the past year, COSEWIC held two Wildlife Species Assessment Meetings and reviewed the status of 79 wildlife species (species, subspecies, populations). During the meeting of November 2009, COSEWIC assessed or reviewed the classification of the status of 28 wildlife species. COSEWIC assessed or reviewed the classification of an additional 51 wildlife species (species, subspecies and populations) during their April 2010 meeting. For species already found on Schedule 1 of SARA, the classification of 32 species was reviewed by COSEWIC and the status of the wildlife species was confirmed to be in the same category (extirpated - no longer found in the wild in Canada but occurring elsewhere, endangered, threatened or of special concern). The wildlife species assessment results for the 2009-2010 reporting period include the following: Extirpated: 6 Endangered: 39 Threatened: 16 Special Concern: 17 Data Deficient: 1 This report transmits to the Minister the status of 46 species newly classified as extirpated, endangered, threatened or of special concern, fulfilling COSEWIC’s obligations under SARA Section 24 and 25. A full detailed summary of the assessment for each species and the reason for the designation can be found in Appendix I of the attached report. Since its inception, COSEWIC has assessed 602 wildlife species in various risk categories, including 262 Endangered, 151 Threatened, 166 Special Concern and 23 Extirpated. In addition, 13 wildlife species have been assessed as Extinct. Also, to date, 46 wildlife species have been identified by COSEWIC as Data Deficient and 166 wildlife species were assessed as Not at Risk. This year has been a particularly productive year for COSEWIC’s Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge (ATK) Subcommittee. In April 2010 COSEWIC approved the Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge Process and Protocol Guidelines, providing clear and agreed principles for the gathering of Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge to carry out COSEWIC functions as required under Section 15(2) of SARA (See Appendix III of the attached report). We are grateful for the rich and enthusiastic contribution made by community elders and experts in helping the ATK Subcommittee prepare the ATK protocols.
Recovery Document Posting Plans
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