Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database


For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
 
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Vulnerable as Pterostylis mirabilis
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, included on the Commenced List (1/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Policy Statements and Guidelines Draft survey guidelines for Australia's threatened orchids (Department of the Environment, 2013b) [Admin Guideline].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Declaration under s178, s181, and s183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of threatened species, List of threatened ecological communities and List of threatening processes (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000) [Legislative Instrument] as Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474).
 
Amendment to the list of threatened species under section 178, 181 and 183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) (160) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2014h) [Legislative Instrument] as Pterostylis mirabilis.
 
State Government
    Documents and Websites
SA:Draft recovery plan for 23 threatened flora taxa on Eyre Peninsula, South Australia 2007-2012 (Pobke, K., 2007) [State Recovery Plan].
State Listing Status
SA: Listed as Vulnerable (National Parks and Wildlife Act 1972 (South Australia): June 2011 list) as Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474)
Scientific name Pterostylis mirabilis [86228]
Family Orchidaceae:Orchidales:Liliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author (D.L.Jones) R.J.Bates
Infraspecies author  
Reference Barker, R.M. & Bates, R.J., (2008) New combinations in Pterostylis and Caladenia and other name changes in the Orchidaceae of South Australia. Journal of the Adelaide Botanic Gardens 22.: 103 [comb. nov.]
Other names Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) [64688]
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

Previously referred to as Oligochaetochilus aff. despectans "Eyre Peninsula", Pterostylis aff. despectans "summer flowered form" and Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474).

The Nodding Rufoushood is a terrestrial herb with a tall, slender flowering stem growing to 8 cm in height and covered in long scaly sheathing bracts. There are approximately 5–12 small, lanceolate, overlapping leaves in ground-hugging rosettes 3 cm across that are withered well before flowering occurs. There are one to several greenish to white flowers, and these sit on long pedicels bent at right angles to the stem so the flowers face down. The galea (hood-shaped part of flower) is narrow and about 2 cm in length, with a 1.5 cm long, straight and filiform (thread shaped) apex. The labellum (lip) is narrow ovate, thin in texture and greenish or pale brown, growing to 8 mm in length. The structure has two long setae (hair-like structures) growing from mounds near the base and many shorter ones on the lateral margins. The lateral sepals are deflexed (curved downward) and slender, with the upper portion growing to 1.2 cm in length. The filiform tips of the structures are bent backward and grow to 2.5 cm in length (Bates 2011).   

The Nodding Rufoushood is restricted to approximately a dozen localities. It is endemic to eastern Eyre Peninsula (South Australia). It is found between 75–200 m above sea level, in the 300 mm rainfall zone between Cleve and Kimba (Bates 2000 pers. comm.; Bates 2011; TSSC 2008tu). The orchid is known to occur in coastal areas, but is also found in locations to about 100 km inland (TSSC 2008tu).

The total Nodding Rufoushood population was estimated (in 2007) to comprise approximately 220 plants. The population and occurs within an estimated area of 190 km² (Pobke 2007).

The orchid grows mostly in stony brown loam soils, among rocks on hilly slopes in scrublands of Broombush (Melaleuca uncinata). The Nodding Rufoushood is also known from Callitris and Eucalypt woodland (Bates 2011).

Flowering occurs from late October to early January. It is the last orchid to flower on Eyre Peninsula, with the flowers opening successively over approximately eight weeks. By the time the last flower closes, the basal rosette has been dead for up to twelve weeks. Other Pterostylis (or Oligochaetochilus) species occur throughout its range, however these are largely un-described. No hybrids have been observed between the Nodding Rufoushood and other orchid species (Bates 2011).

The Nodding Rufoushood could be confused with the similarly late flowering Lowly Greenhood (Pterostylis despectans). However the latter species does not occur on Eyre Peninsula, has less narrow flowers that are brown (not green) and the flowers are placed on the ground (Bates 2011).

As threats to the Nodding Rufoushood have not been quantified, they remain potential threats only. They include habitat loss and fragmentation, grazing and trampling, weed invasion, inappropriate fire regimes and agricultural spray drift. Most recent observations (undertaken in 2004 and cited in 2007) indicate that the orchid has a good seed set and recruitment at all known populations, and thus genetic depression has not been observed. It is, therefore, most likely that habitat fragmentation, which would reduce populations sizes and genetic variability, remains a potential threat to the species. Populations occurring on private land may be affected by grazing and trampling by the Sheep (Ovis aries) and the Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus). The latter activity, which remains un-quantified at the sites, may inhibit seed germination due to soil disturbance or compaction or by encouraging weed growth (Pobke 2007 cited in TSSC 2008tu). Furthermore, fires that are too frequent or not frequent enough may cause populations of the Nodding Rufoushood to become locally extinct (Pobke 2007). While weed invasion has not been assessed at many of the species’ sites since 2000, Cape Weed (Arctotheca calendula) and other weeds may threaten the orchid (Pobke 2007). Finally, agricultural spray drift may threaten the species both directly (due to primary application onto the plant) and indirectly (by affecting the insect pollinators of the plant) (Pobke 2007; TSSC 2008tu).

The following is a summary of the regional and local priority recovery and threat abatement actions identified in the Approved Conservation Advice for the Nodding Rufoushood (TSSC 2008tu):

Habitat Loss, Disturbance and Modification

  • Monitor known populations to identify key threats.
  • Monitor the progress of recovery, including the effectiveness of management actions and the need to adapt them if necessary.
  • Identify populations of high conservation priority.
  • Minimise adverse impacts from land use at known sites.
  • Ensure chemicals used in agriculture do not have a significant adverse impact on the species.
  • Investigate formal conservation arrangements, management agreements and covenants on private land, and for crown and private land investigate inclusion in reserve tenure if possible.

Trampling, Browsing or Grazing

  • Implement the Threat Abatement Plan for Competition and Land Degradation by Feral Rabbits (EA 1999c) for the control of rabbits in the region.
  • Where appropriate, prevent grazing pressure at known sites through exclusion fencing or other barriers.

Invasive Weeds

  • Identify and remove weeds in the local area, which could become a threat to the Nodding Rufoushood, using appropriate methods.
  • Manage sites to prevent introduction of invasive weeds, which could become a threat to the species, using appropriate methods.
  • Ensure chemicals or other mechanisms used to eradicate weeds do not have a significant adverse impact on the species.

Fire

  • Develop and implement an appropriate fire management regime for local populations.
  • Provide maps of known occurrences to local and state Rural Fire Services and seek inclusion of mitigative measures in bush fire risk management plans, risk register and/or operation maps.

Enable Recovery of Additional Sites and/or Populations

  • Undertake appropriate seed and mycorrhizal fungi collection and storage.
  • Investigate options for linking, enhancing or establishing additional populations.
  • Implement national translocation protocols (Vallee et al. 2004 cited in TSSC 2008tu) if establishing additional populations is considered necessary and feasible.

Management documents for the Nodding Rufoushood can be found at the start of this profile. Other management documents for the species include:

  • Draft recovery plan for 23 threatened flora taxa on Eyre Peninsula, South Australia 2007-2012 (Pobke 2007).

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Livestock Farming and Grazing:Grazing pressures and associated habitat changes Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Livestock Farming and Grazing:Habitat alteration (vegetation, soil, hydrology) due to trampling and grazing by livestock Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Loss and/or fragmentation of habitat and/or subpopulations Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation Oryctolagus cuniculus (Rabbit, European Rabbit) Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation by weeds Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].
Pollution:Airborne Agricultural pollutants:Drift of agricultural chemicals Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008tu) [Conservation Advice].

Bates, R.J (2011). South Australia's Native Orchids. Compact disc. Native Orchid Society of South Australia.

Bates, R.J. (2000). Personal Communication.

Ecological Evaluation (2002). Clarification of name of Pterostylis aff. despectans (R. Bates 19474).

Environment Australia (EA) (1999c). Threat Abatement Plan for Competition and Land Degradation by Feral Rabbits. [Online]. Biodiversity Group, Environment Australia. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/tap/rabbits08.html.

Pobke, K. (2007). Draft recovery plan for 23 threatened flora taxa on Eyre Peninsula, South Australia 2007-2012. [Online]. South Australia: Department for Environment and Heritage. Available from: http://www.environment.sa.gov.au/biodiversity/west_bcp/pdfs/draft_recovery_plan_for23.pdf..

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (2008tu). Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Pterostylis sp. Eyre Peninsula (R.Bates 19474). [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/species/pubs/64688-conservation-advice.pdf.

EPBC Act email updates can be received via the Communities for Communities newsletter and the EPBC Act newsletter.

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). Pterostylis mirabilis in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Mon, 22 Sep 2014 04:45:21 +1000.