National recovery plan for the Thick-margined Leucopogon (Leucopogon marginatus)
Department of Environment and Conservation, Kensington
- National recovery plan for the Thick-margined Leucopogon (Leucopogon marginatus) (PDF - 276 KB) | (RTF - 1.4 MB)
- Scientific Name: Leucopogon marginatus
- Common Name: Thick Margined Leucopogon
- Family: Epacridaceae
- Flowering Period: July - August
- DEC Region: Midwest
- DEC District: Geraldton, Moora
- Shires: Mullewa, Greenough, Three Springs
- Recovery Team: Geraldton and Moora District Threatened Flora Recovery Teams
- NRM Region: Northern Agricultural
Illustrations and/or further information:
Atkins, K. (2008) Declared Rare and Priority Flora List for Western Australia. Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia. Blackall, W. E. and Grieve, B. J. (1981) How to Know Western Australian Wildflowers IIIB, 2nd ed: p 345. University of Western Australia Press, Nedlands; Brown, A., Thomson-Dans, C. and Marchant, N. (Eds) (1998) Western Australia’s Threatened Flora, Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia; Brown, E. (1997) Unpublished illustration and description; DEC (2008) Western Australian Herbarium FloraBase 2 – Information on the Western Australian Flora. Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia. http://www.calm.wa.gov.au/science/ ; Elliot, W. R. and Jones D. L. (1993) Encyclopaedia of Australian Plants Suitable for Cultivation 6: pp. 167. Lothian Publishing Company, Melbourne; Fitzgerald, W. V. (1904) Leucopogon marginatus, Journal of the Western Australian Natural History Society, 2(1):27.
Leucopogon marginatus was declared as Rare Flora under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 in October 1996 and was ranked as Endangered (EN) under World Conservation Union (IUCN 1994) Red List criterion D in 2000 as less than 250 individuals were known at that time. The main threats are inappropriate fire regimes, vegetation clearing, rabbits, weeds, road and firebreak maintenance and gravel removal. The species is listed as Endangered under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
Leucopogon marginatus is a dwarf shrub 40-60 cm tall with smooth, young growth and erect, smooth stems. This species is distinguished from others by the crisp, undulate and membranous margins of the leaf, and the white bearded flowers that appear in the upper leaf axils in groups of one to three per stalk. The lance-like pointed leaves are dark green, overlapping and embrace the stem(Brown et al. 1998).
Leucopogon marginatus is currently known over a range of 100 km from east of Geraldton, south to the Arrino Sandplain. The species is found on white, pale yellow or grey-brown sand over laterite, in open scrub and dense low heath with Allocasuarina humilis, Jacksonia nutans, Daviesia daphnoides, Hakea prostrata, H. trifurcata, Acacia blakelyi, Hibbertia hypericoides, Eremaea beaufortioides, Banksia scabrella, B. prionotes, Grevillea candelabroides and Melaleuca sp.
Habitat critical to the survival of the species and important populations:
Given that Leucopogon marginatus is ranked as EN, it is considered that all known habitat for wild populations is critical to the survival of the species, and that all wild populations are important populations. Habitat critical to the survival of L. marginatus includes the area of occupancy of populations; areas of similar habitat surrounding and linking populations (these providing potential habitat for population expansion and for pollinators); additional occurrences of similar habitat that may contain undiscovered populations of the species or be suitable for future translocations and the local catchment for the surface and/or groundwater that maintains the habitat of the species.
Benefits to other species or ecological communities:
Recovery actions implemented to improve the quality or security of habitat of Leucopogon marginatus will also protect other Declared Rare Flora (DRF) and Priority Flora. Associated DRF are Conostylis micrantha and Conostylis dielsii subsp. teres. Priority flora include Grevillea hirtella (P3), Grevillea erinacea (P3), Baeckea sp. Walkaway (P3) and Banksia scabrella (P4).
This plan is fully consistent with the aims and recommendations of the Convention on Biological Diversity, ratified by Australia in June 1993, and will assist in implementing Australia’s responsibilities under that Convention. Leucopogon marginatusis not listed under any specific international treaty and this IRP does not affect Australia’s obligations under any other international agreements.
The Aboriginal Sites Register maintained by the Department of Indigenous Affairs does not list any significant sites in the vicinity of known populations of Leucopogon marginatus, however, the Yamatji Land and Sea Council, was consulted in order to identify possible indigenous interest in the habitat or recovery of Leucopogon marginatus and a representative was invited to become a member of the Geraldton District Threatened Flora Recovery Team.
Social and economic impact:
As Populations 14 to 20 and 23 to 26 occur on private property the protection of the species in these areas has the potential to affect future development. Recovery actions refer to continued liaison between stakeholders.
Evaluation of the plan’s performance:
The Department of Environment and Conservation, in conjunction with the Geraldton and Moora Districts Threatened Flora Recovery Teams, will evaluate the performance of this IRP. In addition to annual reporting on progress and evaluation against the criteria for success and failure, the plan will be reviewed following five years of implementation.
Completed Recovery Actions
- Relevant land managers have been made aware of the location and threatened status of the species.
- Declared Rare Flora (DRF) markers are in place for road and most firebreak populations.
- Rabbit baiting was conducted at a Nature Reserve population in 1999. Follow-up baiting was undertaken in 2000.
- New populations have been found as a result of surveys undertaken by staff from DEC’s Geraldton District and the WA Herbarium.
- A botanist contracted to DEC’s Moora District in 2005 found six new populations on private property while undertaking a survey of remnant sandplain vegetation.
- Staff from DEC’s Geraldton District have implemented a pre-suppression fire management strategy in a Nature Reserve that contains seven populations of the species.
Ongoing and future recovery actions
- Staff from DEC’s Geraldton District regularly monitor populations of the species and maintain close liaison with relevant land managers.
- The Geraldton District Threatened Flora Recovery Team (GDTFRT) and Moora District Threatened Flora Recovery Team (MDTFRT) are overseeing the implementation of this IRP and will include information on progress in their annual reports to DEC’s Corporate Executive and funding bodies.
The objective of this IRP is to abate identified threats and maintain or enhance viable in situ populations to ensure the long-term preservation of the species in the wild.
Criteria for success:
The number of populations has increased or the number of individuals within populations have increased by ten percent or more over the five year term of the plan.
Criteria for failure:
The number of populations has decreased or the number of individuals within populations have decreased by ten percent or more over the five year term of the plan.
- Coordinate recovery actions
- Map habitat critical to survival of Leucopogon marginatus
- Liaise with relevant land managers and Indigenous groups
- Monitor populations
- Implement rabbit control
- Implement weed control
- Obtain information on post fire regeneration
- Develop and implement a fire management strategy
- Conduct further surveys
- Collect seed
- Promote awareness
- Install markers
- Review this plan and assess the need for further recovery actions