Biodiversity Series, Paper No. 4
S.R. Morton, J. Short and R.D. Barker, with an Appendix by G.F. Griffin and G. Pearce
Department of the Environment, Sport and Territories, 1995
11. Refugia in South Australia
11.1. Reference number SA1
Refuge area: Dalhousie Springs
Biogeographic region: Stony Plains
Type of refuge: Mound springs
Lat./Long. 26°11’S / 135°24’E
Quality of refuge: Highly significant (6)
Area (km²): <100
Chief refuge value
Highly restricted habitat for species confined for long periods of time to tiny and isolated pockets.
Artesian springs of the Great Artesian Basin1.
The plant Eriocaulon carsonii (E)1.
Endemics among invertebrates include the isopod Phreatomerus latipes, the ostracod Ngarawa dirga, further undescribed ostracods, a phreatic amphipod Phreatochiltonia anophthalma, further species of the amphipod genus Austrochiltonia, possibly endemic copepods, and a macrostomid flatworm2. There is a substantial radiation of hydrobiid snails endemic to Dalhousie Springs6. The fishes Chlamydogobius sp., Neosilurus sp., Craterocephalus dalhousiensis and C. gloveri are endemic to the Dalhousie basin4. A plant – Nicotiana burbidgeae – is endemic to the springs complex5.
One plant is the only record for central Australia (Lemna disperma), and three constitute the only records for northern South Australia (Baumea arthrophylla, Hydrocotyle verticillata and Polygonum salicifolia)5. Most of the endemics mentioned in the previous section represent evolutionary relicts.
Other significant species
Water drawdown, pressure from visitors, feral animals and infestations of date palms.
Within Witjira National Park.
1. Harris (1992)
2. Ponder (1986)
3. Zeidler and Ponder (1989)
4. Kodric-Brown & Brown (1993)
5. Mollenmans in Zeidler and Ponder (1989)
6. Ponder et al. (1989)