Habitats of North Carolina
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Floodplain Forests
General Poplar Forests
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General Description The key factor for this habitat is the presence of poplars, aspens, or cottonwoods, all in the genus Populus. Individually these species occupy a range of different habitats, including high elevation summits, in the case of Bigtooth Aspen and a relict population of Quaking Aspen, to bottomlands in the case of Eastern Cottonwood and permanently flooded coastal swamps in the case of Swamp Cottonwood. None occupy the complete range of these environments and are included in separate habitats rather than this more generalized type.

Instead of the Populus species, it is the herbivorous insects that feed on the entire range of Populus species that are the Determining Species of this habitat; they are the ones that show a high fidelity to any habitat that contains any one of the Populus species. Some feed to some extent on Willows (also in the Salicaceae), but their ranges appear to be most closely determined by the presence of Populus.

Abiotic Factors Geographic Regions: Lower Coastal Plain to High Mountains. USDA Hardiness Zones: 6-8. Landform: ridges, slopes, bottomlands, wet flats, and swamps. Slope Aspect: north, east, south, and west, also flat. Soil Moisture: Dry to hydric. Soil texture: loamy, silty,or mucky. Soil pH: acdic to circumneutral. Soil Nutrient Content: rich for most terrestrial sites to poor in blackwater swamps. Microclimate: cool to warm; dry to humid. Hydrological Features: streamheads on ridges and slopes, swamps in Outer Coastal Plain. Flood Frequency: essentially never flooded on ridges to permanently flooded in swamps. Flood Duration: nonexistent to permanent. Fire Frequency: uncommon on ridges, rare in swamps. Drought Frequency: uncommon in uplands, rare in swamp forests. Ice Storm Damage: high in the mountains, low in the Outer Coastal Plain. Wind Storm Damage: moderate. Insolation: canopies are well insolated, lower strata are deeply shaded.

Biotic Structure Vegetation Type: Closed-canopy forests composed of broadleaf, deciduous trees. Key Species: One of the species of Populus must be present. Strata Subcanopy, shrub, and herb-layers are generally sparse in both floodplain and ridgetop examples. Woody debris and leaf litter plentiful in bottomland examples but often submerged in swamp forests and frequenbtly swept away in bottomlands subject to flooding.

Co-evolved Species Groups Phagic and Competitory Symbioses:
Populus species // Acronicta lepusculina-Catocala amatrix-Catocala concumbens-Catocala marmorata-Gluphisia septentrionis-Ipimorpha pleonectusa-Lobophora nivigerata-Nycteola metaspilella-Pachysphinx modesta-Paranthrene dollii-Raphia frater

Determining Species
Scaphoideus cylindratusSNR
Amphipyra glabellaSmooth Amphipyra MothG5S1S2S1S20.11107
Meroptera cviatellaPoplar Bud Borer MothGNRS1S2S1S20.11107
Pachysphinx modestaBig Poplar SphinxG5S1S3S1S20.11107
Pheosia rimosaBlack-rimmed ProminentG5S1S2S1S20.11107
Catocala marmorataMarbled UnderwingG3G4S1S3S1S30.03699
Lobophora nivigerataPowdered Bigwing MothG5S1S3S1S30.03699
Metanema inatomariaPale Metanema MothG5S1S3S1S30.03699
Protitame virginalisThe Virgin MothG5S1S3S1S30.03699
Acronicta lepusculinaCottonwood DaggerG5S2S3S2S30.01230
Ipimorpha pleonectusaEven-lined SallowGNRS2S3S2S30.01230
Apotomis deceptanaDeceptive Apotomis MothGNRS2S4S2S40.00407
Framinghamia helvalisS2S40.00407
Gluphisia septentrionisCommon GluphisiaG5S3S4S3S40.00132
Raphia fraterThe BrotherG5S3S4S3S40.00132
Catocala amatrixThe Sweetheart UnderwingG5S4S40.00041
Notodonta scitipennisFinned-willow ProminentG5SHSH
Paranthrene dolliiDoll's clearwing mothGNRSNRSNR
Nr = Number of Ranked Species = 16
Ner = Number of Extant, Ranked Species = 15
Nv = Number of Historic and Extirpated Species = 1
Nar = Number of Species at Risk of Extirpation (State rank > S5) = 15
Nss = Number of Secure Species (State Rank = S5) = 0
Pss = Proportion of Secure Species (Nss/Ner) = 0.00000
ENE = Expected Number of Extirpations (Sum of PE) = 0.62803
Average PE (ENE/Ner) = 0.04187
Habitat Risk Index = (Nar+Nv) x Average PE = 16 x 0.04187 = 0.66992

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
References Ostry, M.E., L.F. Wilson, H.S. McNabb, and L.M. Moore. 1989. A guide to insect, disease, and animal pests of poplars. Agriculture Handbook 677; USDA Forest Service, 118 p. Available online at: https://bugwoodcloud.org/resource/files/14931.pdf
Updated on 2021-12-13 13:06:50