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Montana Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Brewer's Cliffbrake - Pellaea breweri

Native Species

Global Rank: G5
State Rank: S4
(see State Rank Reason below)

Agency Status
MNPS Threat Rank:

External Links

State Rank Reason (see State Rank above)
Pellaea breweri occurs widely scattered in central and western Montana. From 1949 and 1973-2014 about 30 locations have been found. Populations appear to be secure and grow in protected areas, such as the crevices of limestone in montane to subalpine habitats.
  • Details on Status Ranking and Review
    Brewer's Cliffbrake (Pellaea breweri) Conservation Status Review
    Review Date = 09/06/2017
    View State Conservation Rank Criteria
    Range Extent

    ScoreF - 20,000-200,000 sq km (~8,000-80,000 sq mi)

    Area of Occupancy

    ScoreD - 6-25 4-km2 grid cells

    Number of Populations

    ScoreC - 21 - 80

    Number of Occurrences or Percent Area with Good Viability / Ecological Integrity

    ScoreC - Few (4-12) occurrences with excellent or good viability or ecological integrity

    Environmental Specificity

    ScoreB - Narrow. Specialist or community with key requirements common


    ScoreD - Low

    CommentNo known threats.

General Description
Leaves 4–15 cm long with petiole shorter than the blade. Leaf blade linear, once pinnate. Pinnae ascending, some 2-lobed or mitten-shaped. Sporangia with 64 spores (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Species Range

Range Comments
In MT scattered locations mostly in the southwest, although as far east as Big Horn County and north (disjunct) in Teton County; WA to MT south to CA, UT (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

Observations in Montana Natural Heritage Program Database
Number of Observations: 30

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Crevices of limestone cliffs; montane to treeline.This species is strongly associated with Paleozoic rock formations (Lesica 2012. Manual of Montana Vascular Plants. BRIT Press. Fort Worth, TX).

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Citation for data on this website:
Brewer's Cliffbrake — Pellaea breweri.  Montana Field Guide.  .  Retrieved on , from