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COSEWIC assessment and update status report on the Bluehearts in Canada

Limiting Factors and Threats

Major natural limiting factors include habitat specification and dynamic nature of habitat. This is a seral species that disappears from stable communities (Ostlie 1990). In Ontario, fluctuating water level is an extremely important factor in maintaining the open conditions favoured by this species. The major anthropogenic impact in Ontario is a drastic reduction in amount of natural interdunal habitat due to conversion for cottages and residences. This species is increasingly threatened by recreational activities (Oldham 1995).

The major limiting factor in the United States is habitat loss from physical disturbance, development and succession. In the United States where B. americana occurs primarily in prairie habitats, fire is a necessary disturbance regime for seed germination and growth (Ostlie 1990). Prescribed burning on a rotational 3-4 year cycle is the primary management technique used for this species in Indiana, Illinois, Missouri and Ohio.