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POPULATION LOSS OF GOLDENSEAL, HYDRASTIS CANADENSIS L., (RANUNCULACEAE), IN OHIO

by Mulligan, Margaret R.

Abstract (Summary)
Goldenseal, Hydrastis canadensis L., is a slow-growing perennial herb that is harvested for the medicinal properties of its rhizome. It has become increasingly rare throughout its range, and in Ohio, the core of its range, it is believed to be declining. Voucher specimens from eight herbaria in Ohio were examined to determine what proportion of sites that historically supported goldenseal populations still support them today. Out of 269 voucher specimens reviewed, 71 had sufficient detail for the collection site to be relocated. Of these sites, 13% were deforested and no longer supported populations. The remaining sites were visited and goldenseal was found on 65% of these forested sites. This study revealed that nearly half of documented goldenseal populations have become extinct, suggesting an overall decline in the number of goldenseal populations in Ohio. Most of this population loss appears due to overharvest, rather than habitat loss or deer herbivory.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:

School:Miami University

School Location:USA - Ohio

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:hydrastis goldenseal habitat loss harvest medicinal herb deer herbivory extinction ohio deforestation cites ecoregion urban sprawl population

ISBN:

Date of Publication:01/01/2003

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