Based on the best available scientific and commercial information available, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has determined that the Georgia bully, a flowering shrub found in Georgia, Florida and Alabama, is not at risk of extinction and does not warrant listing under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Also known as Thorne’s buckthorn, swamp buckthorn and swamp bumelia, there are 45 known populations of Georgia bully with 18 of those populations on state and federally protected lands, including Eglin Air Force Base in Florida and Fort Stewart-Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia. Both of these military bases include Georgia bully in their Integrated Natural Resource Management Plans (INRMPs) and consider the species in the planning and implementation of projects. The remainder of the populations occur on lands that are privately owned, with three of those populations protected by conservation easements or land trusts.
Georgia bully inhabitsforests and forested wetlands and can live for over 30 years. It may reproduce both sexually and asexually (vegetatively), depending on environmental conditions. The species was originally known to exist in only a few counties in southwest Georgia. Today, it is found in 29 counties – three in Alabama, six in Florida and 20 in Georgia.
The Service continues to support partners in their conservation and research efforts on behalf of this plant. The species status assessment (SSA) completed for the species in 2021 summarizes the data the Service assembled and reviewed for the plant and incorporates the best scientific and commercial information available. The SSA will be available in our online catalog system at https://ecos.fws.gov/ecp/ March 14, 2022 when the rule publishes in the Federal Register. SSAs are living reports and the Service accepts relevant new information on these species at any time.
A detailed description and contact information for this finding will be available online at the Federal eRulemaking Portal on March 14, 2022: http://www.regulations.gov/ under the following docket number: FWS–R4–ES–2021–0129.