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 Critically Endangered as Thelymitra kangaloonica
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Listing Advice on Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2005g) [Listing Advice].
 
Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
 
Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan not required, "the Kangaloon Sun-orchid is known from three populations. Current threats associated with the endangered ecological community in which the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs include inappropriate fire regimes, grazing by cattle, illegal collection, hydrology changes from road works, and drying out of swamps from climate change and suburban development. Potential threats include long-wall coal mining and pumping of the Kangaloon aquifer for water supply purposes, although results from pumping trials in 2007/2008 indicate that there is no connection between the aquifer system and the perched water associated with the swamps, and that the swamps are rainfall dependent. The approved conservation advice for the species provides sufficient direction to implement priority actions and mitigate against key threats (19/12/2008)".
 
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
Inclusion of species in the list of threatened species under section 178 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (71) (19/12/2008) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2008c) [Legislative Instrument] as Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108).
 
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 Thelymitra kangaloonica.
 
State Listing Status
NSW: Listed as Critically Endangered (Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (New South Wales): December 2013 list) as Thelymitra kangaloonica
Scientific name Thelymitra kangaloonica [81861]
Family Orchidaceae:Orchidales:Liliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author Jeanes
Infraspecies author  
Reference Jeanes, J.A., (2011) Resolution of the Thelymitra aristata (Orchidaceae) complex of south-eastern Australia. Muelleria 29(2): 123-125, Figs 3b, 4b, 6g-i [tax. nov.]
Other names Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) [81971]
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

A recent revision of the taxonomy of the genus Thelymitra has been undertaken which proposes that the Kangaloon Sun-orchid be elevated to species status. This species has not yet been formally published (manuscript name Thelymitra kangaloonica) (CHAH 2009; Jeanes unpubl.). Until the species has been formally published the phrase name, Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108), is the accepted name (CHAH 2007; 2009; TSSC 2008afc). This species has been described as Thelymitra kangaloonica in A Complete Guide to the Orchids of Australia(Jones 2006).

Herbarium specimens collected have previously been ascribed to Thelymitra aristataeLindl. affinis, however, this species grows in higher altitude swampy habitats and plants are more slender with a generally narrower leaf and smaller flowers that appear later in the season.

 

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid is a terrestrial orchid, with a green or purplish flower stem (scape) growing 20–56 cm high. The narrow fleshy leaf grows 15–35 cm long and 5–20 mm wide, and is green with a purplish base. The plant produces two to 15 dark blue flowers that are 15–32 mm across with darker longitudinal veins (Jeanes unpubl.).

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs in NSW and is known from three locations near Robertson in the Southern Highlands. This species occurs within the Southern Rivers Natural Resource Management Region (TSSC 2008afg).

The species has an estimated extent of occurrence of 300 km² (TSSC 2008afc).

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid has an estimated area of occupancy of 10 km². The three localities are Butler's Swamp (0.125 km²), Stockyard Swamp (once known as Molly Morgan Swamp) (7 km²) and Wildes Meadow Swamp (3 km²), and are all located above what is known as the Kangaloon Aquifer (TSSC 2008afc).

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid has not been extensively surveyed.

Snowy Mountains Engineering Corporation (SMEC) conducted a field survey in the Upper Nepean Catchment from 5th–9th and the 19th of November 2007. The Kangaloon Sun-orchid was a target threatened species in this survey. Only one Kangaloon Sun-orchid was located during this survey, within Butlers Swamp. No Kangaloon Sun-orchids were found in the other upland swamps surveyed (SMEC 2007).

There is no accurate estimate of total population abundance for the Kangaloon Sun-orchid.

From the known herbarium specimens for this species, it has only ever been collected at three localities: Stockyard Swamp (previously known as Molly Morgan Swamp), Butler's Swamp in East Kangaloon and Wildes Meadow Swamp (Fitzroy Falls). Butler's Swamp is the type locality for the Kangaloon Sun-orchid. The original (mapped) area of Butler's Swamp has reduced by approximately 60%, owing to draining of the swamp which is located on private land. Wildes Meadow Swamp was inundated when the Fitzroy Falls Reservoir was built, and approximately 80% of its area was lost. Wildes Meadow Swamp is the only suitable habitat within the Fitzroy Falls area for this species (Evans 2007; TSSC 2008afc).

The known areas of habitat occur within the 'Special Area' under the Sydney Water Catchment Management Act 1998 and require permission from the Sydney Catchment Authority for access.

Approximately 40% of the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community, which the Kangaloon Sun-orchid is associated, occurs in the Blue Mountains National Park (TSSC 2005g).

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid is endemic to the Central Coast/Tablelands of NSW, in the Fitzroy Falls/Robertson/Kangaloon area. The species grows in seasonally swampy sedgeland on grey silty clay loam at 600–700 m above sea level (Jeanes unpubl.; TSSC 2008afg).

Butler's Swamp, Stockyard Swamp and Wildes Meadow Swamp occur within the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community, which is listed as endangered under the EPBC Act.

Generation length is not known, but the Kangaloon Sun-orchid is presumed to be a short lived perennial.

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid flowers in late October and early November. The species has friable, mealy pollen with a high degree of capsule development that suggests the species can self pollinate if it is not fertilised by other means (facultatively autogamous). The flowers are moderately large, freely opening with a strong spicy fragrance and a functional viscidium (a sticky pad) which indicate this species may sometimes be capable of entomophily (pollination by insects) (Jeanes unpubl.; Jones 2006).

Jones (2006) describes the Kangaloon Sun-orchid as being differentiated from other similar species of Sun-orchids (Thelymitra spp.) by its narrow, depth thick leaf and flowers that are deep blue with dark veins. The "post-anther lobe" is tapered, smooth, curved, notched and the lobes are irregularly toothed.

The species is highly localized, being restricted to the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone. It grows amongst tall sedges and rushes in grey silty soil, in open swamps which are seasonally wet. The strongly scented flowers open fairly readily on sunny days (in late October and November). Surveys within the known locations require methodical surveying of the main swamps (Butler's Swamp and Stockyard Swamp).

Butler's Swamp and Stockyard Swamp are the key known locations for the species, in the Kangaloon Aquifer area. Severe reduction of habitat occurred when Fitzroy Falls Reservoir inundated the original extent of Wildes Meadow Swamp, resulting in a localised loss of 80% of its habitat. Butler's Swamp has also been reduced to about two-thirds of its original area due to draining of the swamp. Alteration to the water flow regime of these swamps is a direct threat to the survival of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid. The remaining areas of Butler's Swamp and Stockyard Swamp are in relatively natural condition. These two areas of habitat are the least disturbed habitats for the Kangaloon Sun-orchid (Evans 2007; TSSC 2008afc).

The main threats associated with the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community in which the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs include inappropriate fire regimes, grazing by cattle, illegal collection, hydrology changes from road works and drying out of swamps from climate change and suburban development (TSSC 2005g; TSSC 2008afc). The Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community is susceptible to changes in water flow, changes in the level of the water table and structural damage. Several areas of the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community have been degraded through alterations to water flows and a change to the level of the watertable (TSSC 2005g). Interference with water flows is a known threatening process to this community and therefore to the habitat in which the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs.

The Illawarra Plateau is underlain by a recognized coal resource and coal mining leases are being re-activated directly under the Kangaloon Aquifer area. In other areas on the Illawarra Plateau longwall mining techniques have been employed to extract coal from coal seams equivalent to that which lies underneath the Kangaloon Aquifer. There is a threat that coal mining could crack the Kangaloon Aquifer, which would have severe consequences for the groundwater dependent ecosystems in the Kangaloon Aquifer area. Should catastrophic drying of swamps occur, as a result of interference with the groundwater supplies, it would potentially eliminate Stockyard Swamp and Butler's Swamp as suitable habitat for this species (TSSC 2005g; TSSC 2008afc).

Minister's Reasons for Recovery Plan decision

The Kangaloon Sun-orchid is known from three populations. Current threats associated with the endangered ecological community in which the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs include inappropriate fire regimes, grazing by cattle, illegal collection, hydrology changes from road works and drying out of swamps from climate change and suburban development. Potential threats include long-wall coal mining and pumping of the Kangaloon aquifer for water supply purposes, although results from pumping trials in 2007/2008 indicate that there is no connection between the aquifer system and the perched water associated with the swamps, and that the swamps are rainfall dependent. The approved Conservation Advice for the species provides sufficient direction to implement priority actions and mitigate against key threats. A recovery plan is not considered to be necessary at this time.

Priority recovery and threat abatement actions identified by the Threatened Species Scientific Committee (2008afg) that would support the recovery of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid include:

  • Design and implement a monitoring program.
  • Undertake survey work in suitable habitat and potential habitat at flowering time (during October and November) to obtain estimated total population size and to locate any additional populations/occurrences.
  • Undertake seed germination and/or vegetative propagation trials to determine the requirements for successful establishment, including mycorrhizal association trials.
  • Monitor known populations to identify key threats.
  • Manage threats to areas of vegetation that contain populations/occurrences of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid.
  • Ensure road widening and maintenance activities (or other infrastructure or development activities) involving substrate or vegetation disturbance in areas where the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occurs do not adversely impact on known populations.
  • Manage sites to prevent introduction of invasive weeds, which could become a threat to the Kangaloon Sun-orchid, using appropriate methods.
  • Raise awareness of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid within the local community.

    All known populations of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid occur within the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community, and as such the health of this community is of high importance to the recovery of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid. Priority recovery and threat abatement actions that would benefit the Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community include (TSSC 2005g):

  • Develop conservation agreements or covenants with landholders who have the swamps on their properties.
  • Fence important remnants to control the impacts of certain introduced animals.
  • Identify seasonal and long-term fluctuations in the water flows and water quality regimes within the swamps.
  • Minimise impacts from changes to water flow and water quality.
  • Manage weeds within and immediately adjacent to existing remnants.
  • Rehabilitate degraded remnants with local species, which are known to occur in these specific environments.

  • The approved Conservation Advice outlines the threats to the Kangaloon Sun-orchid and provides priority recovery and threat abatement actions that would support the recovery of the Kangaloon Sun-orchid (TSSC 2008afg).

    There is also a Conservation Advice for Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone ecological community.

    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 Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Biological Resource Use:Gathering Terrestrial Plants:Illegal collection Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Climate Change and Severe Weather:Climate Change and Severe Weather:Climate change altering atmosphere/hydrosphere temperatures, rainfall patterns and/or frequency of severe weather events Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Habitat loss/conversion/quality decline/degradation Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Restricted geographical distribution (area of occupancy and extent of occurrence) Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Energy Production and Mining:Mining and Quarrying:Habitat modification through open cut mining/quarrying activities Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Energy Production and Mining:Mining and Quarrying:Habitat modification through underground mining Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Alteration of hydrological regimes and water quality Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Changes in hydrology including habitat drainage Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Extraction of ground water Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Natural System Modifications:Dams and Water Management/Use:Habitat disturbance caused by underground mining Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].
    Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afg) [Conservation Advice].
    Transportation and Service Corridors:Roads and Railroads:Development and/or maintenance of roads Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2008afc) [Listing Advice].

    Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (CHAH) (2007). Australian Plant Census. [Online]. Australian National Herbarium, Australian National Botanic Gardens and Australian Biological Resources Study . Available from: http://www.anbg.gov.au/chah/apc/.

    Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (CHAH) (2009). Australian Plant Census. [Online]. Australian National Herbarium, Australian National Botanic Gardens and Australian Biological Resources Study . Available from: http://www.anbg.gov.au/chah/apc/.

    Evans, W.R. (2007). Report on the connectivity between Butlers Swamp and the regional groundwater system of the Upper Nepean area.

    Jeanes, J. (unpubl.). Circumscription of Thelymitra kangaloonica Jeanes sp. nov.

    Jones, D.L. (2006). A complete guide to Native Orchids of Australia, including the island Territories. Sydney, NSW: New Holland Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd.

    Snowy Mountains Engineering Corporation (SMEC) (2007). Baseline Groundwater Dependent Ecosystem Evaluation Study - Upper Nepean Groundwater Pilot Studies -Threatened Species Report. prepared for Sydney Catchment Authority. [Online]. Available from: http://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/asp/06_0331.asp.

    Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2005g). Commonwealth Listing Advice on Temperate Highland Peat Swamps on Sandstone. [Online]. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/communities/temperate-highland-peat-swamps.html.

    Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2008afc). Commonwealth Listing Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108). [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/species/pubs/81971-listing-advice.pdf.

    Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2008afg). Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Thelymitra sp. Kangaloon (D.L.Jones 18108). [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/species/pubs/81971-conservation-advice.pdf.

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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). Thelymitra kangaloonica in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Thu, 18 Sep 2014 01:09:40 +1000.