The Carnivorous Plant FAQ v. 11.5
- courtesy of -
The International Carnivorous Plant Society

Q: What are ICPS Location Codes and how do they relate to conservation?

Sarracenia alabamensis subsp. alabamensis
S. alabamensis, AL002

A: There is a great deal of poaching of rare carnivorous plants. Some of this poaching is probably being done by carnivorous plant horticulturists, so the ICPS developed a program that would provide carnivorous plant growers with legal and inexpensive specimens of these rare plants. The hope is to cut down on poaching by providing an alternative. This project has gone on, hand in hand, with education about conservation issues such as poaching.

One tricky element to this is the issue of "location information." Carnivorous plant growers (and this is especially true for Sarracenia growers) like to know the provenance information for their plants. But location information for rare carnivorous plants is so jealously guarded that the ICPS does not reveal it. (It is ICPS policy to reveal the locations of rare carnivorous plants only to the county level or its equivalent.) So instead, the ICPS conservation program devised the notion of "ICPS Location Codes." This notion was vetted by conservation partners of the ICPS, and they all gave their approval.

In 2003, the ICPS obtained a permit from the US Fish and Wildlife Service to proceed with a Sarracenia Distribution Program. Hundreds of plants were distributed within the USA at very low cost to the hobbyist (just a few dollars per plant). The ICPS hopes that this plan will reduce poaching of these rare plants by making them easily available. For the first (and to date, only) iteration of this program, specimens of Sarracenia alabamensis subsp. alabamensis were distributed.

ICPS Location Codes consist of a two letter geographic code, followed by a sequential three digit number. Within the USA, the geographic code is the state postal abbreviation. The three digit number tracks the site within the geographical region. The plants distributed in the 2003 ICPS Sarracenia Distribution Program are from sites AL001, AL002, and AL003.

More pages on this site about ICPS Location Codes:
What are ICPS "Location Codes"?
What are Location Coded sites like?

Page citations: Rice, B.A. 1996, 2001a, 2003a; personal observation.

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Revised: January 2007
©Barry Rice, 2005