The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has confirmed that Hickman's cinquefoil, a rare plant, grows on Montara Mountain on or near the proposed route of the 4.5-mile Martini Creek Bypass.
On Aug. 20, the federal agency held a hearing in Monterey to consider adding the plant to the federal endangered species list. A decision is not expected for six months to a year.
Fish and Wildlife spokeswoman Patricia Foulk said botanists have documented the plant growing on Devil's Slide. Historically, the plant has been restricted to the Monterey Peninsula and Half Moon Bay area, but its habitat is threatened by development.
Hickman's cinquefoil, also called Hickman's potentilla, is already listed under the California Endangered Species Act, affording it some protection. Listing under the federal act would provide additional protection, Foulk said.
Last week's hearing was open to the public, but no one spoke in favor or against listing the plant. The hearing also sought comment on five additional listings _ three plants, a tree and a legless lizard.