Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database

For information to assist in referral, environmental assessment and compliance issues, refer to the Listing Advice and/or Conservation Advice and Recovery Plan. The Listing and/or Conservation Advice define the national ecological community and may include Key Diagnostic Characteristics, Condition Thresholds, Priority Research and Conservation Actions and additional considerations.
In addition, for recovery planning, mitigation and conservation information, refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice.


EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Critically Endangered
Date Effective 26 Aug 2005
Listing and Conservation Advices For ecological communities listed from 2013 onwards, there is no separate listing advice. Instead, the advice from the Threatened Species Scientific Committee regarding the listing status of the ecological community and recommendation regarding a recovery plan are contained within the Conservation Advice.
Commonwealth Listing Advice on Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2005bc) [Listing Advice].
Approved Conservation Advice for Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2014ad) [Conservation Advice].
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, included on the Commenced List (1/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Other EPBC Act Plans
Policy Statements and other Information Sheets Commonwealth Information Sheet on Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion (Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2005i) [Information Sheet].
Advice on the presence of hybrids in listed ecological communities (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2011an) [Information Sheet].
Federal Register of Legislative Instruments Inclusion of ecological communities in the list of threatened ecological communities under section 181 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (11/08/2005) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2005o) [Legislative Instrument].
Indicative Distribution Map(s) Map of Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion (Department of the Environment and Heritage (AGDEH), 2005j) [Indicative Map].
Distribution Map Community Distribution Map

This map has been compiled from datasets with a range of scales and quality. Species or ecological community distributions included in this map are only indicative and not meant for local assessment. Planning or investment decisions at a local scale should seek some form of ground-truthing to confirm the existence of the species or ecological community at locations of interest. Such assessments should refer to the text of the Listing Advice, which is the legal entity protected under the EPBC Act.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

The ecological community is known as the 'Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion'.
The name Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion has also been used by the New South Wales Scientific Committee. The related name Blue Gum High Forest has been used during vegetation mapping on the Cumberland Plain.

On the Cumberland Plain Blue Gum High Forest grades into Turpentine Ironbark Forest in lower rainfall zones within its area of occurrence and into Turpentine Ironbark Margin Forest where shale derived soils grade into sandstone derived soils (Tozer 2003).

Turpentine Ironbark Forest and Turpentine Ironbark Margin Forest together comprise the ecological community 'Turpentine-Ironbark Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion' which is listed as critically endangered under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (see Department of Environment and Water Resources 2007). For a summary of the distinguishing characteristics of Turpentine Ironbark Forest vegetation, see Turpentine-Ironbark Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

The current conservation status of the Blue Gum High Forest, under Australian and State Government legislation, is as follows:

National: Listed as a Critically Endangered ecological community under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth).

New South Wales: Listed as Critically Endangered in 2007 under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (NSW), Part 2 Schedule 1A (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007a, b). This followed its listing in 1997 as Endangered in Part 3 Schedule 1 of that Act (New South Wales Scientific Committee 1997).

The Blue Gum High Forest ecological community listed under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth) is narrower in scope than the ecological community of the same name listed under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (NSW). The former includes only remnant patches that meet specific patch size and canopy cover criteria (see Condition Classes). The latter includes all remnants of Blue Gum High Forest vegetation irrespective of the size of a remnant patch or its condition (see New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b).
The following animal species have been recorded as either resident or transient in Blue Gum High Forest (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b) or reported to be found in this forest type (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2002c).

Scientific name Common name National¹ NSW²
Calyptorhynchus lathami Glossy Black Cockatoo   Vulnerable
Lathamus discolor Swift Parrot Endangered Endangered
Ninox strenua Powerful Owl   Vulnerable
Pteropus poliocephalus Grey-headed Flying Fox Vulnerable Vulnerable
Saccolaimus flaviventris Yellow-bellied Sheathtail-bat   Vulnerable

¹ Status under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999(Commonwealth) (Department of Environment and Water Resources 2007)

² Status under the Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995(NSW) (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007a)

Three tree species that are common components of Blue Gum High Forest – Eucalyptus pilularis (Blackbutt), E. saligna (Sydney Blue Gum) and Angophora costata (Smooth-barked Apple) (see Description) – provide food resources (nectar and pollen) for the Grey-headed Flying Fox (Pteropus poliocephalus) (Law et al. 2002). The Grey-headed Flying Fox is also known to utilise the canopy tree, lower tree, and tall shrub layers of open forest vegetation for warming and cooling under various wind and day temperature conditions (Buchanan 1985).

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Blue Gum High Forest is tall open forest (also called wet sclerophyll forest) (Benson & Howell 1990a) with a lower tree layer, an open, low shrub layer and prominent ground layer. It occurs mainly in areas with deep clay soil derived from shale, generally at altitudes greater than 100 m above sea level, and that have an annual rainfall of more than 1050 mm (although it may also be present in sheltered locations with lower rainfall) (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007a; Tozer 2003).
Topography, soils and geology

Blue Gum High Forest is associated with the Cumberland Lowlands (Bannerman & Hazelton 1990). It occurs at elevations of 50–178 m above sea level, although on the Hornsby Plateau it is generally confined to altitudes higher than 100 m above sea level.

Slopes are usually gentle, with a mean slope of 6.8° (± 5.3°), and a range of 2.6–17.3° above horizontal (Tozer 2003).

Blue Gum High Forest is restricted to areas with deep clay soils (Benson & Howell 1990a) that are derived from shale and predominantly associated with Wianamatta Shale, although the parent geology may also be Hawkesbury Sandstone or the Mittagong Formation (Tozer 2003). Blue Gum High Forest is also known to occur in isolated valleys on soils associated with localised volcanic intrusions called 'diatremes' (Benson & Howell 1994; New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b).

Climatic conditions

Blue Gum High Forest occurs in areas with a mean annual rainfall of 1050 mm (±183.1 mm), although rainfall across its range varies from 816–1250 mm per annum (Tozer 2003). The mean maximum temperature in January is 27.4 °C (±1.2 °C) (Tozer 2003).
In addition to the work of Tozer (2003), Blue Gum High Forest vegetation has been sampled and described in the following studies:

  • Benson and Howell (1994), Sydney 1:100 000 map sheet, as Blue Gum High Forest (map unit 6b) (Tozer 2003; New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b) as Glen Forest (map unit 6c, i) (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b)
  • Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources (NSW) (2004), Penrith 1:100 000 map sheet, as Blue Gum High Forest (map unit WSF 153)
  • Keith (2004) North Coast Wet Sclerophyll Forests (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b)
  • New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (1997), Urban Bushland Biodiversity Survey, as Blue Gum High Forest (Tozer 2003).

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Unless shown otherwise, the following description of Blue Gum High Forest is derived from the Tozer (2003) vegetation map unit 152 (Blue Gum High Forest). The report by Tozer, which supersedes the report of the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002b), provides the most up-to-date, detailed quantitative information on the composition and distribution of vegetation on the Cumberland Plain.

Dominant tree layer

Blue Gum High Forest is dominated by either Eucalyptus pilularis (Blackbutt) or E. saligna (Sydney Blue Gum), with a mean tree height of 39.3 m (±16.2 m) and a mean foliage cover of 30.7% (±13.7%). In areas located close to the shale/sandstone boundary Angophora costata (Smooth-barked Apple) is present frequently in the tallest tree layer.

Lower-tree and shrub layers

A small tree layer is usually present with a mean height of 14.7 m (±0.8 m) and a mean foliage cover of 20.0% (±15.8%). Species frequently present include Pittosporum undulatum (Sweet Pittosporum), Elaeocarpus reticulatus (Blueberry Ash) and Allocasuarina torulosa (Forest Oak).

Species frequently present in the low shrub layer include Breynia oblongifolia (Coffee Bush), Clerodendrum tomentosum (Hairy Clerodendrum), Maytenus sylvestis (Narrow-leafed Orangebark), Notelaea longifolia f. longifolia (Mock Olive), Pittosporum revolutum (Rough-fruited Pittosporum), Polyscius sambucifolia subsp. A (Elderberry Panax) and Myrsine variabilis (Muttonwood; previously called Rapanea variabilis). The mean height of the shrub layer is 4.8 m (±1.3 m) and the mean foliage cover 8.0% (±4.0%).

In areas located close to the shale/sandstone boundary Persoonia linearis (Narrow-leaved Geebung) and Leucopogon juniperinus occur more frequently in the low shrub layer.

Ground layer

The ground layer contains a mixture of herbs, grasses and ferns, and has a mean foliage cover of 44.2% (±30.2%). Species frequently present include Adiantum aethiopicum (Maidenhair Fern), Calochlaena dubia (Common Ground Fern), Dianella caerulea, Entolasia marginata (Bordered Panic), Lomandra longifolia (Spiny-headed Mat-rush), Oplismenus hirtellus subsp. imbecilis (previously called Oplismenus imbecilis) and Pseuderanthemum variabile (Pastel Flower). Vine species are also present frequently, especially Clematis aristata (Australian Clematis), Eustrephus latifolius (Wombat Berry), Pandorea pandorana (Wonga Wonga Vine) and Tylophora barbata (Bearded Tylophora).

Remnant patches of vegetation that are part of the Blue Gum High Forest listed under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth) usually have component plants representing the characteristic native plant species in all of the above structural layers (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005). Tozer (2003) provides a list of species diagnostic of Blue Gum High Forest vegetation and a methodology for identifying the community with a high level of confidence (see Survey and Monitoring).

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

On the Cumberland Plain, Blue Gum High Forest grades into Turpentine Ironbark Forest in lower rainfall zones within its area of occurrence and into Turpentine Ironbark Margin Forest where shale derived soils grade into sandstone derived soils (Tozer 2003).

Turpentine Ironbark Forest and Turpentine Ironbark Margin Forest together comprise the ecological community 'Turpentine-Ironbark Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion' which is listed as critically endangered under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (see Department of Environment and Water Resources 2007). For a summary of the distinguishing characteristics of Turpentine Ironbark Forest vegetation, see Turpentine Ironbark Forest).

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Blue Gum High Forest is restricted to the Sydney Basin biogeographic region (IBRA region; see Environment Australia 2000).

It occurs on the Hornsby Plateau, at the north-eastern end of the Cumberland Plain (Tozer 2003). It is located on the north shore and northern suburbs of Sydney (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b) and is associated with the "central spine of the North Shore from Crows Nest to Hornsby, and further west on higher land between Castle Hill and Eastwood" (Benson & Howell 1990a). It is confined to the Hawkesbury/Nepean Catchment Management Region (Department of Environment and Conservation 2005b).

In 2005, the Blue Gum High Forest ecological community listed under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth) was limited to the Ku-ring-gai, Hornsby and Baulkham Hills local government areas (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005). As noted under Legal Status, remnant patches in these three local government areas that do not meet specific condition criteria are not part of this listed Blue Gum High Forest ecological community.

Other remnants of Blue Gum High Forest that are not part of the listed ecological community are also reported to occur in the Lane Cove, Parramatta, Ryde and Willoughby local government areas (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b). Data provided by Ku-ring-gai Council (undated) indicate that Blue Gum High Forest reported from Ryde and Parramatta local government areas has been re-classified as Turpentine-Ironbark Forest by the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, and that these two local government areas do not contain Blue Gum High Forest vegetation.
National extent

Blue Gum High Forest's modelled pre–1750 extent is 3720 ha (Tozer 2003).

In 1997 only 168 ha or 4.5% of the original extent of Blue Gum High Forest remained as better quality remnant patches (Tozer 2003). These patches were vegetation remnants mapped predominantly either as patches 0.5 ha or more in area with a crown cover equal to or exceeding 10%, or as patches 5 ha or more in area and with a crown cover of less than 10% (Tozer 2003).

Updated information in 2005 (Attachment 2 of Ku-ring-gai Council undated), based on revised New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service vegetation mapping, indicated just under 95 ha of remnant patches of Blue Gum High Forest remained then. This figure decreased to 88 ha when areas that supported canopy trees and little else were excluded. This total area (compared with a higher figure of 139 ha in 2004) was based on more accurate assessment of vegetation on the ground in mapped remnant patches and took account of areas originally mapped as Blue Gum High Forest but subsequently classified as, or mixed in with, Turpentine-Ironbark Forest.

Three of the five largest high-quality remnants of the listed Blue Gum High Forest ecological community (type 1 patches; see Condition Classes) occur on public land, i.e. Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve and Sheldon Forest in Ku-ring-gai Local Government Area (LGA) and Cumberland State Forest in Baulkham Hills and Hornsby LGAs (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005). The other two largest type 1 high quality listed remnants occur in Ku-ring-gai LGA near Fox Valley Road and Burns Road. Two occurrences of the listed ecological community within larger areas of native vegetation (type 2 patches; see Condition Classes) also occur in Ku-ring-gai LGA and are located near Burns Road (between Finchley and McRae Place) and south of Mount Pleasant Avenue (between Mt Pleasant and Browns Road) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005).

Other occurrence information

The modelled pre-1750 extent of Blue Gum High Forest on the Cumberland Plain indicates it would have been associated with eight modern local government areas (LGAs) (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2002b; see table below). By 1997, remnant patches more than 0.5 ha in area with a crown cover exceeding 10%, or patches more than 5 ha in area and with a crown cover of more than 5%, were located in only three local government areas – Hornsby, Ku-ring-gai and Sutherland (see table below).

Local Government AreaModelled pre-1750 extent (ha)*1997–98 extent (from API)*% extant 1997*#
Hawkesbury38.400
Hornsby1595.434.62.2
Ku-ring-gai1709.296.65.7
Lane Cove0.400
Penrith1.900
Sutherland1.51.599.9
Willougby22.700
Wollondilly21.300

* Data from Appendix 2 of New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002b).

# Further clearing of native vegetation is expected to have occurred since 1997 (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2000).
Blue Gum High Forest can be considered naturally restricted, as its modelled pre-1750 extent of occurrence is only 3720 ha (Tozer 2003).
The New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b) noted that the largest remnant patches of Blue Gum High Forest were less than 20 ha in area. Information in 2005 (Attachment 2 of Ku-ring-gai Council undated), based on revised New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service vegetation mapping, indicated that the largest remnant was only 9 ha in area.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Blue Gum High Forest vegetation is highly fragmented, occurring as small remnant patches in an urban environment (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b; Tozer 2003). The New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b) commented that this habitat fragmentation contributes to a very large reduction in the ecological function of Blue Gum High Forest.
Rainforest understorey species in Blue Gum High Forest rely on birds and mammals to disperse their seeds (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004b). This function is likely to have been disrupted in part through the extensive removal of large old trees from the vegetation (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b) which is known to result in the loss of habitat elements essential for a range of tree-dependent fauna (Gibbons & Lindenmeyer 1996).

The New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b) also noted that Blue Gum High Forest remnants with their understorey substantially modified through frequent burning, mowing or other forms of disturbance are likely to have reduced functionality, through adverse impacts on the recruitment of native plant species in artificially open areas and through degraded habitat for a range of bird and small mammal species.

Recher and colleagues (1993) noted that the history of landuse on the Cumberland Plain, that has involved clearing and habitat fragmentation, changed fire regimes and the introduction of exotic species, resulted in a decline in the abundance of its native fauna and local extinctions. Although it was possible to generally reconstruct a sense of the pre-European mammal and bird fauna of the open-forest and tall open-forest vegetation (i.e. which would have included Blue Gum High Forest), they noted little data existed for the original occurrence of reptile, frogs and invertebrates in these forests.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Only high quality remnant patches with characteristic native plant species present in all structural layers (see Description) and that have the following characteristics are part of the Blue Gum High Forest ecological community listed under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005):

  • tree canopy cover >10%, patch area > 1 ha, or
  • tree canopy cover <10%, patch area > 1 ha and patch is located within native vegetation with an area >5 ha.

The type 1 patches, whose total area is 136 ha, have the greatest conservation value and their size generally makes them most resilient to disturbance (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005). The type 2 patches, whose total area is 4 ha, enhance the potential for connectivity and the viability of the ecological community, act as a buffer against disturbance and support gene flow in the plant and animal species associated with the ecological community (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005).

Occurrences of Blue Gum High Forest that do not meet the above criteria, although not part of the listed ecological community, still have conservation values as biodiversity reservoirs, faunal corridors etc.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Tozer (2003) provides a detailed description of the sampling procedure that should be adopted for using positive diagnostic species to identify the type of vegetation present in remnants on the Cumberland Plain.
The identity of Blue Gum High Forest on the Cumberland Plain can be confirmed through the use of positive diagnostic species (Tozer 2003). These are plant species that have a higher probability of occurring in a particular vegetation type than expected, based on their frequency of occurrence in the data set.

Tozer (2003) lists 41 positive diagnostic species for Blue Gum High Forest, comprising 11 tree species, eight shrub species, seven climber species and 15 grass or herb species in the ground layer. The presence of at least 17 of these species in a 0.04 ha sample plot provides confirmation, at a 95% confidence level, that the vegetation being sampled is Blue Gum High Forest, provided the total number of native plant species growing in the plot is 34 or more.

The work of Lewis (2001) and McDonald and colleagues (2002) (see under Conservation Advice) highlights the importance of monitoring before and following Blue Gum High Forest restoration activities to be able to measure and assess changes in vegetation composition and structure.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Past threats

Blue Gum High Forest was extensively logged for timber subsequent to European settlement, and most of the community on the north shore of Sydney was cleared by the 1860s so the land could be used for orchards (Benson & Howell 1990b; Tozer 2003). Suburbs had spread to the north shore ridge by 1920 (Benson & Howell 1990b) and the community continued to be cleared for ongoing urban expansion (Benson & Howell 1994).

Current and future threats

The main ongoing threats to Blue Gum High Forest are further clearing of vegetation for urban development and the subsequent impacts from fragmentation, urban runoff and its associated increased nutrient and sediment loads, weed invasion, mowing and inappropriate fire regimes (Department of Environment and Conservation 2005b).

Threats from urbanisation – vegetation clearance

Vegetation clearance for urban development includes sale of public and freehold land for housing, small scale clearing associated with residential subdivision, road widening/upgrading, construction of freeways, extension and maintenance of service easements (e.g. power and water service corridors) and channelling/piping of creeks (Benson & Howell 1990a; New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b). The cumulative impact of further clearing of remnants is likely to result in an overall loss of floristic diversity (Tozer 2003).

Threats from urbanisation – other impacts

Many of the threats to Blue Gum High Forest in urban areas relate to the juxtaposition of the remnants with intensively disturbed and built over land and often arise from activities on these adjoining areas (Tozer 2003). The threats include:

  • increased soil phosphorus levels from garden fertilisers, dumped refuse, sewer discharges and pet excrement (Benson & Howell 1990a)
  • dispersal of weed propagules from stormwater, dumped garden refuse, fruit-eating birds and wind (Benson & Howell 1990a; Lewis 2001; McDonald et al. 2002)
  • escape of cultivated gardens plants (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a)
  • excessive moisture, pollutants and nutrients from stormwater influx (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a; New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b), and
  • changed fire regimes (e.g. McLoughlin 1998).

Weed invasion – introduced species

Nutrient-enriched runoff, changed fire regimes and changed water regimes facilitate weed invasion of remnant patches of Blue Gum High Forest (Benson & Howell 1990a; Tozer 2003). Remnants with a high perimeter to area ratio have a high risk of invasion (Tozer 2003), and weeds are often most common along the boundary of remnant areas (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a).

The weeds listed in the table below are commonly associated with Blue Gum High Forest (Benson & Howell 1994; New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a; New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b; Tozer 2003).

Scientific nameCommon nameHabit
Asparagus asparagoidesBridal CreeperClimber
Cinnamomum camphora*Camphor laurelTree
Lantana camara*LantanaShrub
Ligustrum lucidum*Large-leaved PrivetTree
Ligustrum sinense*Small-leaved PrivetTree
Ochna serrulata*Ochna; Mickey Mouse PlantShrub
Passiflora edulis*PassionfruitClimber
Passiflora subpeltataPassionfruitClimber
Pennisetum clandestunumKikuyuGrass
Rubus ulmifolius*BlackberryShrub
Senna pendula var. glabrata#CassiaShrub
Tradescanta albifloraWandering JewHerb
Tradescantia fluminensisWandering JewHerb

* species often present even in least disturbed parts of high quality remnants (Tozer 2003)

# listed as Senna colutioides in New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b)

Lantana camara, which is listed as a threatening process in New South Wales, is considered a specific threat to Blue Gum High Forest (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2006).

Weeds in high densities can displace native plants and lead to a decline in the diversity of native grasses, herbs and small shrubs (Benson 1992; Buchanan 1989). Species like Wandering Jew smother native ground species, prevent seedling recruitment and are difficult to eradicate (Benson & Howell 1994).

Weed invasion – native species

Although a natural component of Blue Gum High Forest, Sweet Pittosporum (Pittosporum undulatum) is considered a weed in remnants if it reaches high densities. In Blue Gum High Forest in the Ludovic Blackwood Memorial Sanctuary, areas with a closed canopy layer of Sweet Pittosporum (or under dense Large-leaved Privet) lacked native grasses, herbs and small shrubs in above-ground vegetation (Buchanan 1989). The dense shade and leaf litter of Sweet Pittosporum also prevented the establishment of saplings of the dominant eucalypts.

Inappropriate fire regimes

Fire is considered to be an important part of the ecology of Blue Gum High Forest (see Fire; under Conservation advice). However changed fire regimes, either high frequency fires, total exclusion of fires, or changes to the season in which vegetation is burnt can, or is likely, to lead to changes in vegetation structure and/or native species composition as well as to the type and abundance of weeds in the vegetation (Benson & Howell 1990a; McLoughlin 1998).

High fire frequency, which is listed as a threatening process in New South Wales, is considered a specific threat to Blue Gum High Forest on the Cumberland Plain, and is likely to result in the loss of plant species in the community (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2000).

The absence of fire in Blue Gum High Forest (e.g. for at least 40 years, Buchanan 1989) is known to lead to the native plant Sweet Pittosporum (Pittosporum undulatum) becoming dominant in the understorey and causing long-term loss of other plant species (McDonald et al. 2002; New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004b).

Mowing

Regular mowing of the ground layer in Blue Gum High Forest can prevent the component species flowering and setting seed, and lead to a gradual loss of species in the vegetation. Cessation of mowing and active removal of weeds in degraded Blue Gum High Forest over a ten-year period can lead to native grasses, herbs and shrubs reproducing, an almost trebling of the native species present in the above-ground vegetation, and the restoration of a shrub layer and a multi-age tree structure (Buchanan 1989; Lewis 2001).
In 1997 only 168 ha of good quality Blue Gum High Forest remained, while updated data in 2005 indicated this had decreased to 88 ha.

Factors relevant to condition and status of remnants

The New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b) notes that most stands of Blue Gum High Forest are in a state of regrowth following past extensive removal of large old trees as a result of clearing or logging activities, and that tree height and density in these stands may thus differ from that in undisturbed stands. Because of this type of past disturbance Blue Gum High Forest (including the listed ecological community) may now occur with either an open forest or woodland vegetation structure (Threatened Species Scientific Committee 2005).

The plant species composition of Blue Gum High Forest at any given site will vary with factors such as the site's past history of disturbance (including the fire regime), and with recent rainfall or drought conditions. Vascular plant species that are absent from the above-ground vegetation may be present below the ground as part of the soil seed store or as vegetative structures such as bulbs, corms, rhizomes, rootstocks and lignotubers (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b). Many remnant stands of Blue Gum High Forest have a highly modified understorey in which the native woody component has been replaced largely by woody exotic species or by increased abundance of native and exotic grasses (New South Wales Scientific Committee 2007b).

A variety of weed species are commonly found in Blue Gum High Forest, even in the least disturbed parts of remnant patches (Tozer 2003). Weed species most commonly associated with the vegetation and that threaten its condition are listed in the section Threats.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

The NSW Department of Environment and Conservation has been preparing a recovery plan for endangered ecological communities on the Cumberland Plain that will include Blue Gum High Forest (Department of Environment and Conservation 2005a).
Pending completion of a recovery plan the Department of Environment and Conservation (2005a) has published generic best practice guidelines for the management and restoration of bushland on the Cumberland Plain. Specific topics covered in the guidelines include site assessment to identify the most appropriate management options, bush regeneration techniques including weed control, and the use of fire, soil disturbance, reduction in plant biomass, grazing management and other 'triggers' to promote natural regeneration. The three key generic management steps recommended in the guidelines for Cumberland Plain communities are:

  • retain all existing native vegetation where possible
  • protect any retained vegetation from further degradation (including fencing remnants and linking remnants through targeted revegetation), and
  • actively manage all retained and protected vegetation remnants (including weed suppression, control of feral animals, encouraging regeneration of native plants).

Key mechanisms identified for the protection and recovery of Blue Gum High Forest (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004b; Department of Environment and Conservation 2005a) include:

  • protecting high conservation value remnants through reservation, environmental protection zoning, development control processes and voluntary conservation agreements
  • preventing further clearing or fragmentation of remnants
  • developing plans of management and implementing appropriate management regimes, using best practice standards (see Department of Environment and Conservation 2005a) to prevent further loss or decline
  • managing weed infestations
  • implementing appropriate bush regeneration strategies, and
  • restoring remnants to create buffer zones and corridors to link remaining patches.

Other desirable management actions identified specifically for Blue Gum High Forest vegetation (see Department of Environment and Conservation 2005b) include the following:

  • applying necessary fire regimes to maintain the appropriate floristic and structural diversity
  • avoiding unnecessary mowing to promote regeneration
  • controlling run-off entering Blue Gum High Forest remnants if the runoff would change water, nutrient and sediment levels or cause erosion, and
  • restoration activities including bush regeneration and revegetation.

The NSW Department of Environment and Conservation has identified 22 priority actions, grouped into 13 strategies, to help recover the Blue Gum High Forest community listed under New South Wales law (see Department Environment and Conservation 2005c).
Only 17.7 ha (10.6% of the extant community) of mapped Blue Gum High Forest was located in national parks in 2002. At that time 37.2 ha (22.1% of extant) occurred in local government Special Use zones and 47.7 ha (28.4%) in local government Open Space (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2002b).

Presence of listed Blue Gum High Forest ecological community in conservation reserves

The Threatened Species Scientific Committee (2005) noted that only the following public lands contain remnants of the five largest high-quality remnants (type 1 remnants; see Condition Classes) of the Blue Gum High Forest ecological community listed under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Commonwealth):

  • Cumberland State Forest, West Pennant Hills-reported to contain 5 ha of Blue Gum High Forest (Ku-ring-gai Council undated; see also New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002b)
  • Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve, St Ives-reported to contain 9 ha of Blue Gum High Forest (Ku-ring-gai Council undated; see also New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2002b, 2004a; Waite 2004)
  • Sheldon Forest, Turramurra-reported to contain 4.32 ha of Blue Gum High Forest (Ku-ring-gai Council undated; see also (Benson & Howell 1994).

The plan of management for Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a) includes the following policies:

  • conservation of native plant communities, with priority given to the Blue Gum High Forest
  • control of introduced plants and where possible eradication
  • revegetation work using only plant species endemic to the reserve, and where possible using plant material propagated from seed collected within the area to be treated
  • control of introduced plants by techniques that cause minimal disturbance to the environment.

Presence of other Blue Gum High Forest on public lands

Other public lands reported to contain Blue Gum High Forest and that are managed by local government councils (Ku-ring-gai Council undated) include the parks and reserves shown in the table below. This table excludes drainage reserves and road reserves along county roads.

Name of Reserve/ParkSuburbCategory*
BAULKHAM HILLS GOVERNMENT AREA  
Castlewood community reserveCastle HillR2
Eaton Rd ReserveWest Pennant HillsR3
Heritage ParkCastle HillR2
Lisle Court ReserveWest Pennant HillsR3
Mount Wilberforce ReserveWest Pennant HillsR3
Telfer Way ReserveCastle HillR3
HORNSBY LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA  
Campbell ParkWest Pennant Hills5
Fearnley ParkBeecroftR3
Kelly ParkWest Pennant Hills5
Kenley ParkNormanhurstR3
Kent Street ReserveEppingR3
Lakes of CherrybrookCherrybrookR2
Netherby St ReserveWahroongaR3
Observatory ParkPennant HillsR2
Samuel Oxley ParkWest Pennant Hills5
Tim Brownscombe ReserveGalstonR3
Upper Pyes Creek/ Erlestoke ParkCastle HillR3
Vimiera ParkEppingR3
KU-RING-GAI LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA  
Blackbutt ReservePymbleR2
Blytheswood ReserveTurramurraR3
Browns ForestSt IvesR1
Clive Evatt ReserveWahroongaR2
Duff Street ReserveTurramurraR3
Granny Springs ReserveTurramurraR2
Huntley's ForestSt IvesR3
Irish Town Grove ReservePymbleR3
Maddison ReservePymbleR3
Orana ReservePymbleR3
The GladeWahroongaR3
Turiban ReserveWahroongaR3
Turramurra Memorial ParkTurramurraR3
WILLOUGHBY LOCAL GOVERNMENT AREA  
Anzac Memorial ReserveChatswood West5
Artarmon ReserveArtarmonR3
Blue Gum ReserveChatswood WestR3
Campbell ParkChatswood WestR3
Coolaroo ReserveChatswood WestR3
Ferndale ReserveChatswood WestR3
The Cresent-Anglo St ReserveChatswood West5

*Key to Category (based on Attachment 2 of Ku-ring-gai Council, undated)

R1 Area that would have a suitable zoning, shape and size to have minimum impact from surrounding urban land use; typically > 10 ha in size if isolated or mostly isolated, > 3 ha if part of a main bushland reserve; typically regular in shape with dimension (width) > 150 m

R2 Area that would have suitable zoning but would not have adequate size or shape to sustain a significant core area; edge effects and / or urban drainage would impact on most of the area; typically 0.5–3 ha in size and has dimension (width) > 60 m

R3 Area that can support canopy trees and a limited range of understorey; significant edge effects and / or urban impact on all of the reserve; typically has dimension (width) < 60 m (an area that can support canopy trees; would normally be associated with residential land use, some road reserves, parks with exotic grasses or mown understorey, play areas etc).

Other parks/reserves where Blue Gum High Forest occurrences have been reported include:

  • Berowra Valley Regional Park (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2002a)
  • Castle Hill Reservoir (McDonald et al. 2002)
  • Lane Cove National Park (Brown 2001)
  • Ludovic Blackwood Sanctuary (Attachment 2 of Ku-ring-gai Council undated)
  • McQuoin Park, Wahroonga (National Trust of Australia undated)
  • Mobbs Reserve, Epping (Parramatta City Council 2001)
  • Rapanea Forest, Dundas (Parramatta City Council 2001)
  • Richard Webb Reserve, Pennant Hills (McDonald et al. 2002).

The Blue Gum High Forest vegetation in the above types of areas is not part of the listed Blue Gum High Forest ecological community, but would have conservation values as biodiversity reservoirs, faunal corridors etc.

Blue Gum High Forest reported to occur in Brush Farm Park (Benson & Howell 1994; McDonald et al. 2002; Oculus Environmental Planning 2001), Burrows Park (McDonald et al. 2002), Deniston Park and Darvall Park, Deniston (e.g. see Benson & Howell 1994; McDonald et al. 2002; Oculus Environmental Planning 2001), Edna May Hunt Reserve (Benson & Howell 1994), Galaringi Reserve (Parramatta City Council 2002) and Mobbs Hill, Carlingford are now considered to be Turpentine Ironbark Forest (Parramatta City Council 2002; Tozer 2003; Attachment 2 of Ku-ring-gai Council undated).
The on-ground work of McDonald and colleagues (2002) showed the importance of active management of degraded Blue Gum High Forest. It indicated that restoration of the community by artificial planting of presumed native species should only be carried out after other methods promoting natural regeneration have been tested. McDonald and colleagues (2002) note that the success of the latter may decrease at sites that have been subject to intense degradation or that have remained unburnt for so long that soil seed stores are diminished.

Many native understorey species persist as propagules in the soil and are able to re-establish in favourable germination and regrowth conditions (Benson & Howell 1994). This observation has been supported by monitoring in highly degraded Blue Gum High Forest vegetation, where the use of fire and/or manual weed removal has promoted substantial natural regeneration (Lewis 2001; McDonald et al. 2002).

Consolidating the boundaries of reserved areas can be important to minimise edge effects such as weed fronts, nutrient flows from adjoining areas and increased frequency of hazard reduction burning (Waite 2004). Waite (2004) noted this also benefits adjacent properties by providing a stable basis for councils, fire authorities and neighbours to do long-term planning, investment, asset protection, building standards and vegetation management.

Weed removal

Techniques for the control of introduced herbaceous and woody weeds are described in the best practice guidelines Recovering Bushland on the Cumberland Plain (Department of Environment and Conservation 2005a). The information is relevant to many of the weed species listed earlier (see Threats) that are threats to Blue Gum High Forest. The guidelines reiterate the importance of using weed control techniques that achieve the desired management objectives with the least intervention practicable, and note that an integrated approach involving a number of techniques is usually necessary.

McDonald and colleagues (2002) showed that manual weed removal in Blue Gum High Forest vegetation can lead to regeneration of mesic and sclerophyllous shrub species and grass and herb species in the ground layer. They found that even low levels of disturbance through manual removal of weeds triggered some germination of native species which normally germinate in high numbers after fire.

Bush regeneration projects have been successful in removing weeds in Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve and allowing the centre of the reserve to remain largely weed free (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a). However the Plan of Management noted the need for more work to significantly reduce the continued invasion of weeds from neighbouring private properties and from lands managed by Sydney Water, Ku-Ring-gai Council and the Roads and Traffic Authority (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2004a).

The New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2004b) suggested that fire should be used to control some weed species (as well as stimulate the regeneration of native plants) in Blue Gum High Forest. It is known however, that some weed species, including Rubus fruticosus (Blackberry), Ligustrum sinense (Small-leaved Privet) and Ochna serrulata (Ochna) are able to resprout vegetatively after fire in the northern Sydney area (see Thomson & Leishman 2005).

Prescribed fires in combination with other control techniques, including herbicides and biological control, are considered to offer an opportunity to remove the above-ground biomass of Bridal Creeper (Asparagus asparagoides) in Cumberland Plain Woodlands (Willis et al. 2003), and may also be relevant to its control in Blue Gum High Forest. Burning alone will not control this weed, as the plants produce vegetative regrowth after being burnt.

Where natural bushfire regimes cannot be reinstated (see below), New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2004b) indicated it may be necessary to control the native Pittosporum undulatum (Sweet Pittosporum) to maintain plant species diversity. Buchanan (1989) found Sweet Pittosporum can be removed from Blue Gum High Forest by a combination of cutting and burning, with McDonald and colleagues (2002) reporting that 50–70% of unwanted Sweet Pittosporum plants can be killed by a prescribed fire.

Fire

Experimental burns in Sheldon Forest and Ludovic Blackwood Memorial Sanctuary have shown that fire is important to maintain the plant species diversity of Blue Gum High Forest (Buchanan 1989; McDonald et al. 2002). The New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2004b) considered that in drier locations with Blue Gum High Forest, relatively frequent fires would have been important in maintaining understorey diversity.

The New South Wales Rural Fire Service guidelines for fire management (fuel reduction burning) of Blue Gum High Forest indicate that there should be no fire more than once every 15 years in the community and that the fires should be of low intensity (New South Wales Rural Fire Service 2004). These guidelines also specify that mechanical forms of hazard reduction in Blue Gum High Forest cannot include slashing, trittering or tree removal. In addition, the 'Rules and Notes' specify that no part of an endangered ecological community is to be subjected to successive fires more frequently than the minimum fire interval, and that at least 50% of the endangered ecological community within each local government area "must exist in a state that has been burnt less frequently than the minimum fire interval" (New South Wales Rural Fire Service undated). These fire frequency specifications must take into account both wildfire and fuel reduction burns.

The New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service fire regime guidelines for Blue Gum High Forest in Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve are for a minimum interval between successive fires of 25 years and a maximum between-fire interval of 60 years, with crown fires to be avoided in the lower end of the interval range (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2006). The guidelines note that the minimum between-fire interval "is based on the primary juvenile periods of species sensitive to extinction under frequent fire regimes and does not include the time to replenish seed bank reserves." The maximum interval is used to indicate the time since a fire at which species may disappear from the above-ground vegetation due to senescence (New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service 2006).

In Lane Cove National Park, Brown (2001) notes that fire regimes for Blue Gum High Forest vegetation is not less than 15 years or more than 30 years between fires.

Reliable records of historical burns, including those started by Aborigines, indicate that most fires in the Sydney region at the time of early European settlement occurred during spring and early summer (August to January), suggesting this period would be the most optimal time for prescribed burns in Cumberland Plain vegetation (McLoughlin 1998). In contrast, McLoughlin (1998) reported that prescribed burns carried out by the New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service and Hornsby Shire Council in northern Sydney (areas where Blue Gum High Forest remnants are present) from 1980 to 1995 were conducted predominantly in autumn-winter. The consequences for the structure and species composition of the affected vegetation (compared with the impact of fires during the 'natural' spring-early summer fire season) are not known.

Experimental burns in degraded Blue Gum High Forest vegetation in Sheldon Forest (McDonald et al. 2002) have shown that low intensity fire together with active weed control can help restore the ground and shrub layers and overall diversity of plants in the vegetation, through both vegetative regrowth and germination of seed in the soil seed bank. Seed of sclerophyllous shrub species were especially stimulated by fire compared with the germination response of more mesic shrub species, or the germination response of sclerophyllous shrub species to mechanical soil disturbance.

For the legal definition of the ecological community please refer to the listing advice and other documents under Legal Status and Documents.

Bannerman, SM and Hazelton, PA (1990) Soil landscapes of Penrith 1:100 000 map sheet, Soil Conservation Service, Sydney.

Benson, DH (1992) The natural vegetation of the Penrith 1:100,000 map sheet, Cunninghamia 2(4), 541-96.

Benson, D and Howell, J (1990a) Taken for Granted: the Bushland of Sydney and its Suburbs, Kangaroo Press in association with the Royal Botanic Gardens, Sydney.

Benson, DH and Howell, J (1990b) Sydney's vegetation 1788-1988: utilization, degradation and rehabilitation, Proceedings of the Ecological Society of Australia 16, 115-127.

Benson, D and Howell, J (1994) The natural vegetation of the Sydney 1:100 000 map sheet, Cunninghamia 3(4), 677-787.

Brown, IR (2001) Lane Cove: national park in the city, Parks 11(3), 21-27, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www.iucn.org/themes/wcpa/pubs/pdfs/PARKS/Parks11.3.pdf .

Buchanan, R (1985) Site assessment of the Gordon Bat Colony-weed control and restoration of native vegetation, Ku-ring-gai Bat Colony Committee, Gordon, New South Wales.

Buchanan, RA (1989) Bush Regeneration: Recovering Australian Landscapes, TAFE New South Wales, Sydney.

Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) (2005a) Recovering Bushland on the Cumberland Plain: Best practice guidelines for the management and restoration of bushland. Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW), Sydney, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/Recovering_Cumberland_Plain_pre.pdf .

Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) (2005b) Blue Gum High Forest - Hawkesbury/Nepean: Distribution and vegetation associations in the Hawkesbury/Nepean, viewed 10 May 2007, http://threatenedspecies.environment.nsw.gov.au/tsprofile/profile_data.aspx?id=10094&cma=Hawkesbury/Nepean .

Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) (2005c) Blue Gum High Forest - priority actions, viewed 10 May 2007, http://threatenedspecies.environment.nsw.gov.au/tsprofile/pas_profile.aspx?id=10094 .

Department of Environment and Water Resources (Commonwealth) (2007), Species Profile and Threats Database, viewed 30 May 2007, http://www.environment.gov.au/cgi-bin/sprat/public/sprat.pl .

Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources (NSW) (2004) Vegetation Penrith - 9030, 1:100 000 map sheet (First edition), Native Vegetation Map Report Series No. 4, Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources, Sydney.

Environment Australia (2000) Revision of the Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation of Australia (IBRA) and the Development of Version 5.1 - Summary Report, Department of Environment and Heritage, Canberra, viewed 20 June 2007, http://www.environment.gov.au/parks/nrs/ibra/version5-1/summary-report/index.html .

Gibbons P and Lindenmeyer DB (1996) A review of issues associated with the retention of trees with hollows in wood production forests, Forest Ecology and Management 83, 245-279.

Keith, DA (2004) Ocean shores to desert dunes: the native vegetation of New South Wales and the ACT, NSW Department of Environment and Conservation, Sydney.

Ku-ring-gai Council (undated) Supplementary material on the Blue Gum High Forest nomination for listing as a critically endangered ecological community under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, unpublished report provided to the Department of Environment and Heritage (Commonwealth).

Law, B, Eby, P and Somerville, D (2002) Tree-planting to conserve flying foxes and reduce orchard damage, in P Eby and D Lunney (eds) Managing the Grey-headed Flying-fox as a threatened species in NSW, Royal Zoological Society of New South Wales, Sydney, pp 84-90.

Lewis, JA (2001) Regeneration of remnant Blue Gum High Forest following the cessation of mowing, Cunninghamia 7(2), 173-182.

McDonald, T, Wale, K and Bear, V (2002) Restoring Blue Gum High Forest: lessons from Sheldon Forest, Ecological Management & Restoration 3, 15-26.

McLoughlin, LC (1998) Season of burning in the Sydney region: the historical records compared with recent prescribed burning, Austral Ecology 23(4), 393-404.

National Trust of Australia (NSW) (undated) Bushland management: our experience with restoration projects, National Trust of Australia (NSW), Sydney, viewed 8 June 2007, http://www.nsw.nationaltrust.org.au/bush_new/experience.asp .

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (1997) Native flora in western Sydney, Urban Bushland Biodiversity Survey Stage 1: Western Sydney, New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, Hurstville.

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2000) Native Vegetation Maps of the Cumberland Plain Western Sydney, Technical report, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Sydney.

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002a) Fire Management Plan Berowra Valley Regional Park, NSW NPWS, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/fmp_final_Berowra.pdf .

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002b) Interpretation Guidelines for the Native Vegetation Maps of the Cumberland Plain, Western Sydney, Final Edition NSW NPWS, Hurstville, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/cumb_plain_mapping_interpguidelines.pdf .

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2002c) National Biodiversity Audit. Biodiversity Strategy Case Study-Cumberland Plain Subregion, Sydney Basin Bioregion, New South Wales, SB8: Cumberland, viewed 15 May 2007, http://audit.deh.gov.au/anra/vegetation/docs/case_studies/sb8_casestudy.pdf.

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2004a) Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve Plan of Management, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW), viewed 11 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/pdfs/pom_dalrymple-haynr.pdf.

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2004b) Endangered ecological community information: Blue Gum High Forest. NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, viewed 9 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/EECinfo_Blue_Gum_High_Forest.pdf.

New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service (2006) Fire Management Strategy Lane Cove National Park Wallumatta Nature Reserve Dalrymple-Hay Nature Reserve, Department of Environment and Conservation, Sydney, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www3.environment.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/LCNP_WNR_DHNR_FMS.pdf.

New South Wales Rural Fire Service (undated) Rules and notes for implementation of the threatened species fire hazard reduction list for the [2006] Bush Fire Environmental Assessment Code, New South Wales Rural Fire Service, viewed 15 May 2007, http://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/file_system/attachments/State/Attachment_20050304_B716085D.pdf .

New South Wales Rural Fire Service (2004) Threatened species hazard reduction list - Part 3 - Endangered Ecological Communities, South Wales Rural Fire Service, viewed 15 May 2007, http://www.rfs.nsw.gov.au/file_system/attachments/State/Attachment_20050304_61C9CAC7.pdf.

New South Wales Scientific Committee (1997) Final Determination for listing Blue Gum High Forest as an Endangered Ecological Community, NSW Government Gazette, Sydney.

New South Wales Scientific Committee (2000) Ecological consequences of high frequency fires - key threatening process declaration - final determination, New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, viewed 15 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/npws.nsf/content/ecological%20consequences%20of%20high%20frequency%20fires%20key%20threatening%20process%20declaration.

New South Wales Scientific Committee (2006) Lantana camara - key threatening process declaration - final determination, New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, viewed 15 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/npws.nsf/Content/lantana_ktp.

New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007a) Threatened Species Conservation Act Schedules 1, 2 and 3, updated to 16th February, 2007, viewed 30 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/PDFs/tsca_schedules_070216.pdf.

New South Wales Scientific Committee (2007b) Blue Gum High Forest in the Sydney basin Bioregion - critically endangered ecological community listing - final determination, New South Wales National Parks and Wildlife Service, viewed 11 May 2007, http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/npws.nsf/Content/blue_gum_high_forest_endangered.

Oculus Environmental Planning (2001) Urban bushland in the Ryde LGA, prepared for Ryde City Council, viewed 10 May 2007, http://www.ryde.nsw.gov.au/WEB/SITE/RESOURCES/DOCUMENTS/Environment/urbanbushland.pdf.

Parramatta City Council (2001) Our endangered vegetation communities, Bushcare Bulletin Issue 24, Spring 2000/01, viewed 10 May 2007, http://64.233.179.104/scholar?hl=en&lr=&q=cache:3pIyLFdmf-IJ:www.parracity.nsw.gov.au/publications/bushcareBulletin/BushCareSpring01f.pdf++%22Blue+Gum+High+Forest+%22 .

Parramatta City Council (2002) Galaringi, Cox Park, Dandarbong Reserve, Eric Mobbs Memorial Park Plan of Management, Parramatta City Council, viewed 14 may 2007, http://www.parracity.nsw.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0020/2576/GalaringiCombined.pdf.

Recher, HF, Hutchings, PA and Rosen, S (1993) The biota of the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment: reconstruction and restoration, Australian Zoologist 29, 3-41.

Thomson VP and Leishman MR (2005) Post-fire vegetation dynamics in nutrient-enriched and non-enriched sclerophyll woodland, Austral Ecology 30, 250-260.

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (2005) Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion. Advice to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage on amendments to the List of Ecological Communities under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act), viewed 30 May 2007, http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/communities/sydney-blue-gum.html.

Tozer, M (2003) The native vegetation of the Cumberland Plains, western Sydney: systematic classification and field identification of communities, Cunninghamia 8(1), 1-75.

Waite, L (2004) An urban conservation dilemma: the endangered ecological community of Blue Gum High Forest, Australasian Plant Conservation 13(1), 15-16.

Willis, AJ, McKay, R, Vranjic, JA, Kilby, MJ and Groves, RH (2003) Comparative seed ecology of the endangered shrub, Pimelea spicata and a threatening weed, Bridal Creeper: Smoke, heat and other fire-related germination cues, Ecological Management & Restoration 4 (1),55-65.


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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Blue Gum High Forest of the Sydney Basin Bioregion in Community and Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed 2014-10-01T23:20:45AEST.