Recovery Strategies

Recovery Strategy for the Eastern Prickly Pear Cactus (Opuntia humifusa) in Canada

The Eastern Prickly Pear Cactus (Opuntia humifusa) is a perennial, low-spreading, succulent cactus with jointed, rounded, but flattened, green stems measuring 5 to 12 cm in length. Stem segments are fleshy or firm, and sparsely covered with clusters of barbed bristles and spines. It occurs in small patches or large, scattered colonies of thousands of stems.

An Endangered plant species in Canada, it reaches the northern edge of its range in the southern tip of Ontario. It occurs there in two protected areas: two native populations in Point Pelee National Park and one in Fish Point Provincial Nature Reserve on Pelee Island. These populations are threatened mainly by loss and degradation of suitable habitat and by collection. In Canada, the species is limited to dry, sandy substrates, typically dunes, that are in the early stages of succession in habitats known collectively as Lake Erie Sand Spit Savannas.

The first version of this recovery strategy was originally posted in 2010. The current version posted here has been amended, as per Section 45 of the Act, from the first version, to include some additional language regarding Traditional Ecological Knowledge.

Consultation period: 2010-05-05 to 2010-07-04

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Contact Person(s)

John Haselmayer
Species at Risk Coordinator
Parks Canada
Bruce Peninsula National Park of Canada
248 Big Tub Road
Tobermory, ON
N0H 2R0
Tel: 519-596-2444
Fax: 519-596-2062
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