Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Liliopsida Cyperales Gramineae

Scientific Name: Bromus interruptus
Species Authority: (Hack.) Druce
Taxonomic Notes: Bromus interruptus (interrupted brome) almost certainly arose in the 19th century as a new species through a major and sudden genetic change (UK Biodiversity Group 1998).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Extinct in the Wild ver 3.1
Year Published: 2013
Date Assessed: 2011-01-10
Assessor(s): Bilz, M.
Reviewer(s): Rich, T.C.G. & Walker, K.
Bromus interruptus was last seen in the wild in Cambridgeshire in 1972. Since 2001, three populations have been reintroduced to Cambridge, Aston Rowant and Cholderton. These populations are not yet considered to be self-sustaining.
Previously published Red List assessments:
1998 Extinct (EX)

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:This species is endemic to the UK. Historically it was found scattered mostly south of a line from the Wash to the Severn estuary (Biodiversity Action Reporting System 2010). It is extinct in the wild since 1972. It was introduced to the Netherlands but never persisted there (Rich and Lockton 2002).
Countries occurrence:
Regionally extinct:
United Kingdom (Great Britain)
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Three introductions have taken place since 2001 (Biodiversity Action Reporting System 2010). Several hundred plants were observed germinating and fruiting in summer 2005 at the Aston Rowant National Nature Reserve in the Chiltern Hills (Marren 2005) and is believed to be regenerating at this site (K. Walker pers. comm. 2010).
Additional data:
Population severely fragmented:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:This annual species was an arable weed, especially of sainfoin, clover or rye-grass (Morgan and Leon 1992, Rich and Lockton 2002).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): The causes for its extinction were probably crop sprays and improved seed screening (Rich and Lockton 2002).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: This species is listed under Appendix I of the Convention on the Conservation of European Wildlife and Natural Habitats (Bern Convention).
Reintroductions have taken place. The plant is grown in several botanic gardens in the UK (e.g. Cambridge Botanic Garden, Royal Botanic Gardens Kew) and in private gardens (K. Walker pers. comm. 2010).

Classifications [top]

14. Artificial/Terrestrial -> 14.1. Artificial/Terrestrial - Arable Land
suitability: Suitable  

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
In-Place Species Management
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:Yes
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:Yes
In-Place Education
2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.1. Shifting agriculture
♦ timing: Past, Unlikely to Return ♦ scope: Whole (>90%) ♦ severity: Very Rapid Declines ⇒ Impact score: Past Impact 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

Bibliography [top]

Biodiversity Action Reporting System. 2010. National Action Plan - Bromus interruptus. Available at: (Accessed: 04/03/2010).

IUCN. 2011. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2011.1). Available at: (Accessed: 16 June 2011).

Marren, P. 2005. Not extinct, only interrupted. Plant Talk 42: 16-17.

Morgan, V. and Leon, C. 1992. Datasheets of flora species for revision of Appendix I of the Bern Convention. Volume II. Nature and Environment. Council of Europe, Strasbourg.

Rich, T.C.G. and Lockton, A.J. 2002. Bromus interruptus (Hack.) Druce (Poaceae) - an extinct English endemic. Watsonia 24: 69-80.

UK Biodiversity Group. 1998. UK Biodiversity Group Tranche 2 Action Plans - Volume I: Vertebrates and vascular plants. English Nature, Peterborough.

Citation: Bilz, M. 2013. Bromus interruptus. In: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2013: e.T165247A5995954. . Downloaded on 09 October 2015.
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