New York Natural Heritage Program
Swamp Birch
Betula pumila L.
Dicots
Betula pumila, Rich shrub fen Troy Weldy
Family: Birch Family (Betulaceae)

State Protection: Threatened
listed species are those with: 1) 6 to fewer than 20 extant sites, or 2) 1,000 to fewer than 3,000 individuals, or 3) restricted to not less than 4 or more than 7 U.S.G.S. 7 minute topographical maps, or 4) listed as threatened by U.S. Department of Interior.

Federal Protection: Not Listed

State Rarity Rank: S2
A State Rarity Rank of S2 means: This plant is threatened/imperiled in New York because of rarity (typically 6-20 populations or few remaining individuals) or is vulnerable to extirpation from New York due to biological factors.

Global Rarity Rank: G5
A Global Rarity Rank of G5 means: This species is demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.


Did you know?
Swamp birch is the only shrubby birch in New York, hence its species name meaning small or dwarf. Its bark does not shred or peel. Native Americans would inhale the smoke from burning catkins to improve respiration.

State Ranking Justification [-]
As of 2004, there are at least nine known populations, including six excellent quality populations with hundreds of plants in high-quality to pristine habitat settings. This shrub is near its southern limit in New York, but in the appropriate habitat (bogs and shrub fens) it can do quite well. These sites are often well-protected, both ecologically and legally.

Short-term Trends [-]

Long-term Trends [-]