Page author: David Giblin
Pedicularis ornithorhynchos
duck's-bill, bird's beak lousewort

Distribution: In the Cascades of Washington; Alaska south to Washington.

Habitat: High mountain meadows.

Flowers: July-September

Origin: Native

Conservation Status: Not of concern


Fibrous-rooted perennial with a woody base, the stems 0.5-3 dm. tall, glabrous below the inflorescence.


Basal leaves 3-12 cm. long, slightly exceeding the petiole, sub-pinnatifid, the narrow leaflets deeply cleft and often again toothed; cauline leaves few and poorly developed, or wanting.


Inflorescence capitate, often with one or two smaller, separate, lower clusters; bracts cleft; calyx lobes 5, short, equal; corolla pinkish-purple, bilabiate, the upper lip hooded, extending at right angles into a straight beak; lower lip 3-lobed; stigma capitate.


Capsule glabrous, flattened, curved.

Identification Notes:

The only other species in our are of a similar reddish color, P. groenlandica, has an elongate inflorescence; P. ornithorhynchus's inflorescence is head-like, about as wide as high.

Accepted Name:
Pedicularis ornithorhynchos Benth.
Publication: Flora Boreali-Americana 2: 108. 1838.

Synonyms & Misapplications:
Pedicularis ornithorhyncha Benth., orthographic variant [HC]
Additional Resources:

PNW Herbaria: Specimen records of Pedicularis ornithorhynchos in the Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria database.

WA Flora Checklist: Pedicularis ornithorhynchos checklist entry.

E-Flora BC: Pedicularis ornithorhynchos atlas page.

CalPhotos: Pedicularis ornithorhynchos photos.

USDA Plants: Pedicularis ornithorhynchos information.

28 photographs:
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