Caladenia arenaria Fitzg. Recovery Plan

Threatened Species Unit, Western
The State of New South Wales, Department of Environment and Conservation, 2004
ISBN: 0731365399

Executive Summary


Caladenia arenaria is a perennial herb first described in 1882 and apparently not recollected until 1983. The habitat was described originally as sandhills among pine on the Edwards, Columbo, Yanco and Murrumbidgee Rivers broadly the Riverina region. There is likely to have been a massive decline in numbers, with populations today only surviving on the eastern part of the former range.

Legislative context

The Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (TSC Act) is NSWs most comprehensive attempt at establishing a legislative framework to protect and encourage the recovery of threatened species, populations and communities. Under the TSC Act, the Director-General of the Department of Environment and Conservation has certain responsibilities including the preparation of recovery plans for threatened species, populations and ecological communities. This Recovery Plan has been prepared in accordance with the provisions of the TSC Act.

Preparation of Plan

This Recovery Plan has been prepared by the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC). The information in this Recovery Plan was accurate to the best of the DECs knowledge on the date it was approved.

Current Species Status

Caladenia arenaria is listed on Schedule 1 (endangered) of the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act, 1995 (TSC Act, 1995), and on Part 1 (endangered) of the Commonwealth Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act, 2000. Survey has revealed five populations, totalling about 2,000 individuals, with probable extinction at two other locations since 1990. The major threats are weeds, grazing and hybridisation.

Objective of the Recovery Plan:

Ensure all populations persist, and that declines in population numbers attributable to threatening processes are reversed.

Specific objectives are:

  1. Population demographic factors influencing recoverability are understood.
  2. The impacts of threatening processes affecting populations are minimised.
  3. Long-term management strategies are developed for each C. arenaria population.
  4. The possibility of stochastic events eliminating a population is reduced.

Recovery performance criteria:

  1. The numbers, structure and distribution of populations is understood.
  2. The population dynamics are understood.
  3. The impact of weeds, grazing, hybridisation and collecting on the populations is minimised.
  4. The effects of hand pollination are understood.
  5. Joint Management Agreements (JMAs) and Voluntary Conservation Agreements (VCAs) are developed for each of the populations.
  6. The germination requirements and most appropriate conditions for long term storage of seed and mycorrhizae are understood, and germplasm stored.

Recovery Actions:

  1. Monitor all populations each year to determine trends in mortality and recruitment.
  2. Pollination and seed-set is monitored for each of the populations.
  3. The weed flora within each population is monitored. Weed removal experiments will be undertaken to examine the influence of weeds on the populations.
  4. The identity and proportion of hybrids is monitored in each of the populations.
  5. Exclosures are established to examine the influence of vertebrate herbivores on C. arenaria.
  6. Conduct annual hand pollination (outcrossing) of plants in several subsites in selected populations to determine increase in seedling recruitment and hand pollination protocols.
  7. Survey in Yarranjerry State Forest and Buckingbong State Forest. The potential locations near Ardlethan and Corowa are surveyed to determine if populations are extant.
  8. State Forests and DEC negotiate appropriate strategies for the protection and recovery of C. arenaria in State Forests. Negotiations be undertaken with the owner of the population on private property to enter some form of conservation agreement.
  9. Appropriate conditions for germplasm storage and germination requirements are investigated, and germplasm stored.

This plan will be in effect for 5 years, and be reviewed after that time. Total estimated cost of recovery for the duration of the plan is $80,440.