Hordeum secalinum 

Scope: Global
Language: English

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
Plantae Tracheophyta Liliopsida Poales Poaceae

Scientific Name: Hordeum secalinum Schreb.
Regional Assessments:
Common Name(s):
English False-rye Barley, Knotted Barley, Meadow Barley
Critesion secalinum (Schreb.) Á.Löve
Hordeum maximum Vill.
Hordeum pratense Huds.
Hordeum rothii Link
Zeocriton maritimum P.Beauv.
Zeocriton secalinum (Schreb.) P.Beauv.
Taxonomic Notes: Hordeum secalinum Schreb. is a tertiary wild relative of Barley, H. vulgare L.(USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program 2010).

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2016
Date Assessed: 2014-08-01
Assessor(s): Rhodes, L., Bradley, I. & Maxted, N.
Reviewer(s): Fielder, H.
Contributor(s): Kik, C., Economou, G., Vögel, R. & Kell, S.P.
Hordeum secalinum is assessed as Least Concern as it is very widely distributed throughout Europe and northern Africa and the species is assessed as Least Concern in Europe which contains the majority of the species' distribution (Kell 2011). However this species is reported to be uncommon throughout some of its range and is in decline in some areas, it is threatened by urbanization and agricultural activities. As a result, establishing active in situ population management and monitoring is a priority for this species and complementary ex situ conservation is also recommended.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description:Hordeum secalinum is native to the Madeira Islands in Macaronesia, northern Africa and is widespread in Europe (USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Progam 2014). It generally occurs at low altitudes of 500 m a.s.l. or less, however in North Africa it occurs at elevations between 1,000 to 2,100 m a.s.l. (von Bothmer et al. 1995).
Countries occurrence:
Algeria; Belgium; Bulgaria; Denmark; France (France (mainland)); Germany; Greece (Greece (mainland)); Hungary; Ireland; Italy (Italy (mainland), Sicilia); Luxembourg; Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of; Malta; Netherlands; Poland; Portugal (Madeira, Portugal (mainland)); Slovenia; Spain (Spain (mainland)); Sweden; Switzerland; Ukraine (Krym); United Kingdom (Great Britain)
Additional data:
Estimated area of occupancy (AOO) - km2:2212
Upper elevation limit (metres):2100
Range Map:Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population:Von Bothmer et al. (1995) state that, despite being previously abundant in inland localities in Europe, it has become a rare species and both inland and coastal populations are decreasing. The same authors also describe its distribution in the Mediterranean and inland Europe as scattered and that only a few localities are known from North Africa.

Knowledge of the European population at national level is as follows (Kell 2011):
  • Greece: not frequent.
  • Germany: the population is decreasing, mainly in southern parts of its range.
  • UK: according to Preston et al. (2002), this species’ distribution has declined very slightly in the north and west of Britain.
  • Ireland: according to Preston et al. (2002), this species’overall distribution is stable.
  • Netherlands: before 1950 the species occurred in 479 hour-squares and after 1950 in 531 (Mennema et al. 1985). Tamis et al. (2003) report that the species occurs in 1,001–3,000 km grid squares.
Current Population Trend:Decreasing
Additional data:
Continuing decline of mature individuals:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations:NoPopulation severely fragmented:Unknown
Continuing decline in subpopulations:Unknown
Extreme fluctuations in subpopulations:NoAll individuals in one subpopulation:No

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology:It is found in moist, saline, mainly coastal areas or very scattered inland areas in saline or (rarely) freshwater habitats such as meadows and pastures. It is rarely found in ruderal areas (von Bothmer et al. 1995).

According to the European Red List (Kell 2011), in Germany, this species grows in coastal salt meadows, pastures and grasslands (Bundesamt für Naturschutz 2010). In the UK, this lowland species grows in meadows and pastures, along roadsides and in river valley floodplains—it prefers sticky, clay soils (Preston et al. 2002). At the coast it is often found in grazing marsh grasslands and on earthen sea walls (Preston et al. 2002). In the Netherlands, it grows in brackish wet soils and in humid and very fertile soils (Tamis et al. 2003).
Systems:Terrestrial; Freshwater
Continuing decline in area, extent and/or quality of habitat:Yes

Use and Trade [top]

Use and Trade: Hordeum secalinum is a tertiary genetic relative of Barley (H. vulgare) and so it has the potential for use as a gene donor for crop improvement (von Bothmer et al. 1995).

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s):

Urbanization, expansion of cultivation, use of fertilisers and drainage, and the associated habitat conversion and degradation compose a threat to both inland and coastal populations (von Bothmer et al. 1995). 

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: The genus Hordeum is listed in Annex I of the International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) which aims to guarantee sustainable agriculture and food security through the conservation and sustainable use of plant genetic resources for food and agriculture, as well as ensuring the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of their use (FAO 2009).

Vincent et al. (2012) report 62 accessions from seven sources thought to contain the largest collections of wild Hordeum seed accessions, identifying this species as medium priority for ex situ conservation within its genus.

No evidence of active in situ conservation was found for this species, however, predicted species distribution overlaps numerous protected areas across the species range, inferred using GeoCAT (Bachman et al. 2011) and so passive conservation is presumed.

Classifications [top]

4. Grassland -> 4.4. Grassland - Temperate
suitability:Suitable season:resident 
5. Wetlands (inland) -> 5.1. Wetlands (inland) - Permanent Rivers/Streams/Creeks (includes waterfalls)
suitability:Suitable season:resident 
12. Marine Intertidal -> 12.5. Marine Intertidal - Salt Marshes (Emergent Grasses)
suitability:Suitable season:resident major importance:Yes
1. Land/water protection -> 1.2. Resource & habitat protection
2. Land/water management -> 2.1. Site/area management
2. Land/water management -> 2.3. Habitat & natural process restoration
3. Species management -> 3.4. Ex-situ conservation -> 3.4.2. Genome resource bank

In-Place Research, Monitoring and Planning
  Action Recovery plan:No
  Systematic monitoring scheme:No
In-Place Land/Water Protection and Management
  Conservation sites identified:Unknown
  Occur in at least one PA:Yes
  Area based regional management plan:No
  Invasive species control or prevention:Not Applicable
In-Place Species Management
  Harvest management plan:No
  Successfully reintroduced or introduced beningly:Unknown
  Subject to ex-situ conservation:Yes
In-Place Education
  Subject to recent education and awareness programmes:No
  Included in international legislation:Yes
  Subject to any international management/trade controls:Yes
1. Residential & commercial development -> 1.1. Housing & urban areas
♦ timing:Ongoing ♦ scope:Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity:Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score:Medium Impact: 6 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.1. Annual & perennial non-timber crops -> 2.1.4. Scale Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing:Ongoing ♦ scope:Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity:Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score:Medium Impact: 6 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

2. Agriculture & aquaculture -> 2.3. Livestock farming & ranching -> 2.3.4. Scale Unknown/Unrecorded
♦ timing:Ongoing ♦ scope:Majority (50-90%) ♦ severity:Slow, Significant Declines ⇒ Impact score:Medium Impact: 6 
→ Stresses
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.1. Ecosystem conversion
  • 1. Ecosystem stresses -> 1.2. Ecosystem degradation
  • 2. Species Stresses -> 2.1. Species mortality

1. Research -> 1.5. Threats
1. Research -> 1.6. Actions
3. Monitoring -> 3.4. Habitat trends

Bibliography [top]

Bachman, S., Moat, J., Hill, A.W., de la Torre, J. and Scott, B. 2011. Supporting Red List threat assessments with GeoCAT: geospatial conservation assessment tool. In: V. Smith and L. Penev (eds) e-Infrastructures for data publishing in biodiversity science. Zookeys 150: 117–126.

Bundesamt für Naturschutz. 2010. FloraWeb. Bonn Available at:

FAO. 2009. International Treaty on Plant Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture (ITPGRFA) [Online]. Rome: Food and Agriculture Organisation. Available at: (Accessed: 18/12/2012).

GRIN. 2010. Germplasm Resources Information Network – (GRIN) [Online Database]. National Germplasm Resources Laboratory, Beltsville, Maryland. Available at:

IUCN. 2016. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2016-3. Available at: (Accessed: 07 December 2016).

Kell, S.P. 2011. Hordeum secalinum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2011: e.T172091A6822059. Available at: (Accessed: 2013).

Mennema, J., Quene-Boterenbrood, A.J. and Plate, C.L. 1985. Atlas van de Nederlandse Flora. Deel 1, 2 & 3. Bohn, Scheltema & Holkema, Utrecht, the Netherlands.

Preston, C.D., Pearman, D.A. and Dines, T.D. 2002. New Atlas of the British and Irish Flora. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Tamis, W.L.M., van der Meijden, R., Runhaar, J., Bekker, R.M., Ozinga, W.A., Ode, B. and Hoste, I. 2003. Standaardlijst van de Nederlandse flora. Gorteria: 101–194.

USDA, ARS, National Genetic Resources Program. 2014. Germplasm Resources Information Network – (GRIN) [Online Database]. Beltsville, Maryland Available at: (Accessed: 17 February).

Vincent, H., von Bothmer, R., Knupffer, H., Amri, A., Konopka, J. and Maxted, N. 2012. Genetic gap analysis of wild Hordeum taxa. Plant Genetic Resources: Characterization and Utilization 10(3): 242–253.

von Bothmer, R., Jacobsen, N. and Baden, C. 1995. An ecogeographical study of the genus Hordeum. IBPGR, Rome, Italy.

Citation: Rhodes, L., Bradley, I. & Maxted, N. 2016. Hordeum secalinum. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2016: e.T172091A19409324. . Downloaded on 22 July 2018.
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