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 Endangered
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, included on the Commenced List (1/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
 
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].
 
State Listing Status
WA: Listed as Endangered (Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 (Western Australia): September 2013 list)
Scientific name Darwinia apiculata [8763]
Family Proteaceae:Proteales:Magnoliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author N.Marchant
Infraspecies author  
Reference Nuytsia 5 (24 Oct. 1984) 63.
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

Scientific Name: Darwinia apiculata

Common Name: Scarp Darwinia

Darwinia apiculata is a densely branched, rounded shrub 40–50 cm tall with red, slender young branchlets. Leaves are linear, scattered with erect petioles with prominent, decurrent leaf bases; 3–5 mm long on young stems, 5–6.5 mm long on mature stems with apiculate (pointy) apices. The flowers are pale green with involucral (at the base of a flower/s) bracts narrowly ovate; green, yellow-green or yellow and red. The floral tube is slightly enlarged, hardened, palecoloured; lower part brown and upper part yellow–green. The calyx lobes (outer floral envelope of a bud) broadly ovate to broadly obovate, 1 mm long by 1 mm wide, entire, and obtuse with ten filaments and a red style, 6–9 mm long. One or two tiny seeds 0.6–0.8 mm diameter are produced (Brown et al 1998; DEC 2009c; Hopper et al 1990).

The species was first described from a specimen collected near the Perth suburb of Kalamunda, Western Australia, in 1982 (Brown et al 1998; Kelly et al 1990).

Darwinia apiculata is endemic to the Darling Range where it is known from three populations (DEC 2009c).

There are three known populations within the Perth Hills. These are summarised below (DEC 2009c):

Summary of populations

Locality Population Land Status Year Population Numbers (Juveniles) Condition
Kalamunda, Perth Hills    1a  Reserve 1999 63 Healthy
2000 15 (400: 1a, 1b and 1c)
1b Reserve 1999 264 Poor
2000 170 (400: 1a, 1b and 1c)
2002 53 (37)
2002  2
1c  Reserve 1999 129 Healthy
2000  170 (400: 1a, 1b and 1c)
1d Private 2000 21 (4) Healthy
2006 166 (6)
Mundaring, Perth Hills 2 Reserve 1999 1646 Healthy
Gosnells, Perth Hills 3a Private 2003 200 Healthy
3b Crown

The species' habitat generally consists of open Jarrah-Marri woodland on shallow, gravely soil over laterite, or open heathland over sandy loams with granite boulders (Marchant 1984; Marchant et al 1987; Kelly et al 1990). It may also grow on hilltops and slopes, in red clay or gravel soils (Atkins 1998).

All three sites, where populations occur, are slightly different in their habitat characteristics (Kelly et al 1990; DEC 2009c):

Population 1 occurs on shallow gravely soil over laterite in open Jarrah-Marri woodland with Allocasuarina fraseriana, Banksia sessilis and Xanthorrhoea preissii.

Population 2 occurs on sandy loam soils amongst granite boulders in open Marri-Wandoo woodland with Xanthorrhoea preissii, Banksia nivea, Hibbertia hypericoides, Hakea lissocarpha and Hypocalymma angustifolium.

Population 3 occurs on sandy loams amongst granite boulders in open to semi-closed sites with Kingia australis, Banksia armata and other perennial shrubs.

The species flowers from October to November (Hopper et al 1990). It is destroyed by fire but regenerates from soil-stored seed (Atkins 1998; Brown et al 1998).

A wildfire during early 1999 destroyed many of the adult plants in Population 1. Seedlings appeared the next year and, by November 2000, plants were vigorous. However, the majority of these seedlings died from very dry conditions experienced over the next two years.

The species is threatened due to the severe fragmentation of populations and the continuing decline in the number of mature individuals. The main threats are inappropriate fire regimes, road and firebreak maintenance, dieback disease, recreational activities, weed invasion, rubbish dumping, and mining (DEC 2009c; Kelly et al 1990).

Inappropriate fire regimes

The viability of all populations is affected if fires are too frequent, recurring before regenerating or juvenile plants reach maturity and replenish the soil seed bank. However, occasional fires are needed for reproduction of this species. Many populations have weeds on the edges of habitat, which are likely to invade post-fire without weed control (DEC 2009c).

Road and firebreak maintenance

Road grading occurs on an annual basis in the area of Subpopulation 1b and firebreak maintenance affects the other subpopulations. Further threats associated with maintenance include construction of drainage channels and slashing of roadside vegetation. These actions also encourage weed invasion (DEC 2009c).

Dieback disease

Phytophthora cinnamomi may pose a threat to Darwinia apiculata. It is not known how susceptible the species is to the pathogen, however, it is thought to have already impacted on the habitat of Subpopulations 1a and 1b. Even if the species is resistant, the presence of dieback poses a threat to the highly susceptible Jarrah-Marri woodland in which it grows (DEC 2009c).

Recreational activities

Bike-riding is a threat to Subpopulations 1a and 1b. Specifically, BMX riders have constructed jumps by moving dirt from bushland near Subpopulation 1b. Bushwalking occurs to a lesser extent in the area of Population 2 and in the bushland that adjoins Subpopulations 3a and 3b. Bushwalking is, however, unlikely to have a severe impact on Darwinia apiculata plants due to their distance from walking trails and the large area over which plants occur (DEC 2009c).

Weeds

Weeds are currently a significant threat to Population 1, and a minor threat to Population 3. Weeds compete with native seedlings and plants for soil nutrients, moisture and space. They could dramatically increase in numbers if a fire or other disturbance occurred in the area. They also exacerbate grazing pressure and increase the fire hazard due to the presence of high fuel loads, which are produced annually by many grass weed species (DEC 2009c).

Grazing

Grazing and trampling by rabbits is thought to be a minor problem in Population 1. Soil disturbance, weed invasion and the addition of nutrients are secondary effects of animal movement in areas inhabited by Darwinia apiculata (DEC 2009c).

Mining

Mining and associated clearing activities may be an issue at Subpopulation 3a (DEC 2009c).

Actions for the recovery of the Scarp Darwinia are described in the National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (DEC 2009c).

Management documents for the Scarp Darwinia can be found at the start of the profile.

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
Biological Resource Use:Logging and Wood Harvesting:Habitat loss, modification and degradation due to firewood collection Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Restricted geographical distribution (area of occupancy and extent of occurrence) Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Energy Production and Mining:Mining and Quarrying:Habitat modification through open cut mining/quarrying activities National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Disturbance, especially from human recreational activities and development Species threats data recorded on the SPRAT database between 1999-2002 (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012i) [Database].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Soil disturbance and/or trampling due to bushwalking National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:bicycles (off road) National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation Oryctolagus cuniculus (Rabbit, European Rabbit) National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation by weeds National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Vegetation and habitat loss caused by dieback Phytophthora cinnamomi National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Threat abatement plan for disease in natural ecosystems caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi (Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (DEWHA), 2009w) [Threat Abatement Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Habitat degradation caused by firebreak construction and/or maintenance National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].
Species threats data recorded on the SPRAT database between 1999-2002 (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012i) [Database].
Pollution:Garbage and Solid Waste:Dumping of household and industrial waste Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Residential and Commercial Development:Housing and Urban Areas:Habitat clearance for rural, peri-urban and urban development Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Residential and Commercial Development:Housing and Urban Areas:Habitat loss, modification and fragmentation due to urban development Species threats data recorded on the SPRAT database between 1999-2002 (Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC), 2012i) [Database].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Low numbers of individuals Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage, 2006gt) [Internet].
Transportation and Service Corridors:Roads and Railroads:Development and/or maintenance of roads National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata) (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC), 2009c) [Recovery Plan].

Atkins, K.J. (1998). Conservation Statements for threatened flora within the regional forest agreement region for Western Australia. Page(s) 1-95. Western Australia: Department of Conservation and Land Management.

Brown, A., C. Thomson-Dans & N. Marchant, eds. (1998). Western Australia's Threatened Flora. Como, Western Australia: Department of Conservation and Land Management.

Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) (2009c). National recovery plan for the Scarp Darwinia (Darwinia apiculata). [Online]. Western Australia: Department of Environment and Conservation. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/recovery/darwinia-apiculata.html.

Hopper, S.D., S. van Leeuwen, A.P. Brown & S.J. Patrick (1990). Western Australia's Endangered Flora and other plants under consideration for declaration. Perth, Western Australia: Department of Consrvation and Land Management.

Kelly, A.E., D.J. Coates, I. Hereford, S.D. Hopper, M. O'Donoghue & L. Robson (1990). Declared Rare Flora and Other Plants in need of Special Protection in the Northern Forest Region. Perth: Department of Conservation & Land Management.

Marchant, N.G. (1984). A new species of Darwinia (Myrtaceae) from the Perth Region, Western Australia. Nuytsia. 5(1):63-66.

Marchant, N.G., J.R. Wheeler, B.L. Rye, E.M. Bennett, N.S. Lander & T.D. Macfarlane (1987). Flora of the Perth Region. Part One. (2nd edn). Perth: Western Australia Herbarium, Department of Agriculture.

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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). Darwinia apiculata in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Sat, 26 Jul 2014 23:12:31 +1000.