The Goats Foot is one of the most important early colonisers of seashore dunes and is widely distributed due to the dispersion of its seeds by ocean currents.
The Goats Foot is a sprawling creeper with long runners bearing pairs of bilobed leaves, resembling a goat's cloven hoof. The flowers are trumpet-shaped and bright purple. Size: Leaves 60 mm long; stems many metres long. Similar Species: Canavalia rosea (northern Natal to Mozambique), a creeping dune coloniser with trilobed leaves; has small purple flowers resembling those of a pea plant.
The Goats Foot is found on the sub-tropical and tropical beaches and dunes of the Indian, Pacific and Atlantic Oceans. It is common throughout its range and is salt resistant allowing it to survive in full spray of salt water. The seeds float and are salt resistant, making it one of the most important examples of oceanic species dispersal.