Habitats of North Carolina
Habitat Group:
Habitat Type:
Members of Rock Outcrops, Glades, and Barrens:
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Rock Outcrops, Glades, and Barrens
Xeric-Mesic Sand Barrens and Glades
General Description Species belonging to this habitat require loose, sparsely vegetated, sandy soils as a primary requirement. Some are adapted to living in areas completely devoid of vegetation but the majority reside in open, sunny woodlands that have patches of bare sand interspersed with sparse ground cover and woody debris.

Many of the animal species of this habitat are burrowers, constructing either permanent tubes or capable of swimming through the sands. Others are active hunters that pursue their prey across the open barrens. The plant species are all psammophitic and xerophytic, adapted to living in sparse populations under harsh conditions, with high temperatures, little or no available water, and scarce nutrients all routinely experienced. At least one moth species, Pygarctia abdominalis, appears to be an obligate herbivore on the Spurge species found in these habitats. Another species, Elaphria cyanympha, may feed on xerophitic lichens.

This group contains species that are adapted to the driest sandy habitats in the state. Species associated with sandy river bars or other wet sandy habitats are treated separately.

Abiotic Factors
Biotic Structure
Co-evolved Species Groups Phagic and Competitory Symbioses:
Euphorbia ipecacuanhae // Pygarctia abdominalis

Determining Species
Cicindela nigriorAutumn Tiger BeetleG2G3S1S2S1S20.11107
Cicindela scutellarisFestive Tiger BeetleG5T5S3S4S3S40.00132
Cicindelidia abdominalisEastern Pinebarrens Tiger BeetleG3G4S3S4S3S40.00132
Ellipsoptera gratiosaWhitish Tiger BeetleG3G4S3S4S3S40.00132
Bryodesma acanthonotaSand Spikemoss G4S2S3S2S30.01230
Paronychia baldwiniiBaldwin's NailwortG4S2S3S2S30.01230
Polygonella polygamaOctober-flowerG4S2S3S2S30.01230
Stylisma pickeringiiPickering's DawnflowerG4S3S30.00407
Mononeuria carolinianaG5S3S4S3S40.00132
Asclepias humistrataPine-woods MilkweedG4G5S4S40.00041
Euphorbia ipecacuanhaeWild IpecacG5S4S40.00041
Stipulicida setaceaCoastal Plain WireplantG4G5S4S40.00041
Chrysopsis gossypinaCottony GoldenasterG5S5S50.00000
Cnidoscolus stimulosusRisky Tread-softlyG5S5S50.00000
Baptisia bracteataCream Wild-indigoG4G5SHSH
Eriogonum tomentosumSouthern Wild-buckwheatG4G5SHSH
Polygonella articulataCoast JointweedG5SHSH
Trifolium carolinianumCarolina CloverG5SHSH
Bulbostylis wareiWare's HairsedgeG3G4SHSH
Elaphria cyanymphaG4S2S3S2S30.01230
Idaea ostentariaShowy WaveGNRS2S3S2S30.01230
Lobocleta plemyrariaStraight-lined Wave MothG2G4S2S3S2S30.01230
Pygarctia abdominalisYellow-edged PygarctiaG3S2S3S2S30.01230
Schinia nubilaCamphorweed Flower MothG5S3S4S3S40.00132
Agrotis vetustaOld Man Dart MothG5S4S40.00041
Spharagemon cristatumRidgeback Sand GrasshopperG5S3S4S3S40.00132
Spharagemon marmorata pictaSouthern Marbled LocustG5TNRS3S4S3S40.00132
Psinidia fenestralisLonghorn Band-Winged GrasshopperG5S4S40.00041
Gryllus firmusSand Field CricketGNRS4S5S4S50.00010
Micrurus fulviusEastern Coral SnakeS10.33330
Coluber flagellumCoachwhipS20.03699
Heterodon simusSouthern Hog-nosed SnakeG2S2S20.03699
Pituophis melanoleucusEastern PinesnakeG4S2S20.03699
Geolycosa pikeiEarth WolfGNRS3S4S3S40.00132
Geolycosa fatiferaGNRSUSU0.00202
Nr = Number of Ranked Species = 35
Ner = Number of Extant, Ranked Species = 30
Nv = Number of Historic and Extirpated Species = 5
Nar = Number of Species at Risk of Extirpation (State rank > S5) = 28
Nss = Number of Secure Species (State Rank = S5) = 2
Pss = Proportion of Secure Species (Nss/Ner) = 0.06667
ENE = Expected Number of Extirpations (Sum of PE) = 0.66024
Average PE (ENE/Ner) = 0.02201
Habitat Risk Index = (Nar+Nv) x Average PE = 33 x 0.02201 = 0.72633

Estimated Risk to the Determining Species
Estimated Risk to the Co-evolved Species Groups
Estimated Security of the Habitat
Index of Habitat Imperilment
Identified Risks
Observed Trends
Distribution Map
Major Conservation Reserves
Priority Areas for Surveys and Conservation Protection
Stewardship and Management Recommendations
Updated on 2022-01-01 00:19:58