Conservation Research Statement and Species Recovery Plan for (Persoonia nutans) R. Br. 1996

Geoff Robertson, Maria Matthes, Martin Smith
NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service
Environment Australia

2.0 Species Recovery Plan - Persoonia nutans

2.1 Recovery Objectives

Primary Objective

To minimise degradation of the habitat of P. nutans so that the species may continue the evolutionary process unhindered by human activities.

Specific Objectives

  1. Protection of existing populations and maintenance of known populations.
  2. To protect new sites as they are found.
  3. To understand the biology and ecology of the species so that management alternatives can be assessed.
  4. To develop community awareness and involvement.
  5. To establish secure ex-situ storage of seed as insurance against future in-situ losses of genetic diversity, particularly in the Liverpool populations.
  6. To prepare a Species and Habitat Management Plan for P. nutans.

2.2 Recovery Criteria

  1. Continued survival of wild populations.
  2. An understanding of the population ecology, breeding biology and response to fire of P. nutans.
  3. Restoration of the habitat at sites where there has been degradation.
  4. Establishment of ex-situ storage of seed from threatened populations.
  5. A greater awareness of P. nutans within the community and support for its conservation.
  6. Implementation of biological and ecological knowledge through a Species and Habitat Management Plan.

2.3 Recovery Actions

  1. Development of adequate planning controls to conserve populations, including voluntary conservation agreements, additions to and creation of national parks and/or nature reserves for areas containing P. nutans.
  2. Survey potential habitat for new populations.
  3. Undertake research into the population ecology, breeding biology and the effects of fire on P. nutans.
  4. Prepare and implement bush regeneration programs.
  5. Establish ex-situ storage of seed.
  6. Development of a community awareness and support program for the conservation of P. nutans.
  7. Preparation of a Species and Habitat Management Plan.

2.4 Responsible Parties for Implementation

The recovery of P. nutans will be coordinated through the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service. The parties which will be involved in the implementation of the Species Recovery Plan include:

  • NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service
  • Dept. Land and Water Conservation
  • Penrith, Liverpool, Campbelltown and Blacktown Local Governments
  • Royal Botanic Gardens, Mt Annan.
  • Bush Fire Services
  • Interested local residents.

ACTION 1.

Development of adequate planning controls to conserve populations, including Conservation Agreements, additions to and creation of national parks and/or nature reserves for areas containing P. nutans.

The following actions are recommended to protect known populations of P. nutans:

  • Liaison with the NSW NPWS Cattai Sub-district to ensure management of Castlereagh and Windsor Downs Nature Reserves is consistent with maintaining self-sustaining populations of P. nutans.
  • Liaison with Armed Forces to ensure activities in 'the Drop Zone' do not further threaten the population of P. nutans.
  • Liaison with Dept Land and Water Conservation to discuss the future of Vacant Crown Land with lease proposals and Aboriginal Land Claims.
  • Liaison with relevant NSW NPWS staff concerning additions to Agnes Banks Nature Reserve.
  • Liaison with Local Government to ensure sustainability of sites likely to be affected by development proposals.

This work should be undertaken by NSW NPWS Project and Technical Officers and should take place over a three year period.

Cost of Action 1

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Project Officer equivalent to 1 month/year including on-costs

4257

4382

4513

0

0

TOTAL

4257

4382

4513

0

0

ACTION 2.

Survey potential habitat for new populations.

There are several areas of potential habitat between the known populations which should be surveyed in the near future. The most significant of these is a large area of Castlereagh woodland west of Londonderry and extending south to Cranebrook.

The areas of Tertiary alluvium near Liverpool should be thoroughly searched to determine the extent of the existing populations and the presence of any undiscovered populations.

This work should be undertaken by NSW NPWS Project and Technical Officers with the assistance of volunteers. It will take three weeks to undertake the survey and prepare a report.

Cost of Action 2

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Project Officer
4 weeks including on-costs

4257

0

0

0

0

1 Technical Officer 4 weeks including on-costs

3009

0

0

0

0

Materials (including maps, photos, slides and report)

350

0

0

0

0

TOTAL

7616

0

0

0

0

ACTION 3.

Undertake research into the population ecology, breeding biology and effects of fire on P. nutans.

The following research should be undertaken under this action:

  • monitoring of survivorship of individuals to investigate longevity of plants
  • monitoring seedling establishment - germination, emergence, survivorship, time taken for seedlings to mature.
  • investigation of seed dispersal mechanisms
  • investigation of fruit predation.
  • investigation of seed viability, germinability and longevity.
  • research the effects of fire on P. nutans.
  • monitor flower and fruit production
  • investigation of breeding system to determine degree of self compatibility

This research should be done or supervised by NSW NPWS officers who have the experience and the facilities to do the research. It should be done over a five year period to obtain quantified data from which to develop management strategies.

Cost of Action 3

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Project Officer equivalent to 2 months/year including on-costs

8515

8764

9027

9027

9027

1 Technical Officer equivalent to 2 months/year including on-costs

6019

6256

6432

6605

6605

Materials (including tags, photos, slides and report etc)

1000

400

200

0

400

TOTAL

15534

15420

15659

15632

16032

ACTION 4.

Prepare and implement bush regeneration programs.

Weed invasion is a minimal problem at present. However, given a few more years and fire events, the habitat of P. nutans may be substantially degraded. There are several species restricted to road edges and low numbers. If the weeds in these areas are not controlled in the near future they may have a negative effect on natural recruitment, it will become a difficult and expensive exercise to control them.

A bush restoration strategy should be prepared for the overall area containing P. nutans and should include detailed site plans of the extent of the weed problem, a strategy for restoration and cost of proposed programs. The plan should be prepared by a qualified bush regenerator. It should take four months to prepare.

The implementation of the program will be dependent on necessary actions identified in the plan.

Cost of Action 4

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Bush Regenerator
3 months/year

0

12000

0

0

0

Materials (including photos, slides and report etc)

0

300

0

0

0

TOTAL

0

12300

0

0

0

ACTION 5.

Establish ex-situ storage of seed.

Ex-situ establishment of populations is an expensive action which requires more time and effort than previously recognised (Offord, 1995), and therefore should only be undertaken where necessary for the survival of the species or population. For this reason, a seed storage program is recommended.

Seed should be collected from all possible sites and labelled appropriately. Care should be taken to leave most seed on the plants and not exploit the wild populations.

Seed can be stored at Mt Annan Botanic Garden. It should be collected over a two year period by either staff from NSW NPWS or the garden, with stored seed tested for loss of viability over time and further collections made accordingly. The cost of this action is for the initial establishment of the seed storage program.

Cost of Action 5

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Seed Collector
1-2 weeks/year

1500

1500

750

0

750

Materials (including lab materials, photos, slides and report etc)

300

100

100

0

200

TOTAL

1800

1600

850

0

950

ACTION 6.

Development of a community awareness and support program for the conservation of P. nutans.

Given the degree of rubbish dumping and apparent disregard for the urban bushland by some members of the community, public awareness and perception of remnants should be increased through educating local residents, bush visitors and local government (Mathias, 1992).

This work should be undertaken by NSW NPWS officers, to include pamphlet production, media awareness, public meetings, field days and workshops. It should be intensified over the same period as the implementation of other recovery actions and continue beyond.

Cost of Action 6

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Project Officer equivalent to 2 months/year including on-costs

0

8764

4513

0

0

1 Technical Officer equivalent to 6 weeks/year including on-costs

0

4322

3212

0

0

Pamphlet and Distribution

0

1500

0

0

0

TOTAL

0

14586

7725

0

0

ACTION 7.

Preparation of a Species and Habitat Management Plan.

The results from the research - understanding the biological and ecological processes that influence the lifecycle of P. nutans and the genetic variability within and between populations - will assist in developing a Species and Habitat Management Plan. This plan can be prepared by a NSW NPWS Project Officer. It should take six months to prepare and will involve some field trips.

Cost of Action 7

ACTION REQUIRING FUNDING

1997/1998

1998/1999

1999/2000

2000/2001

2001/2002

1 Project Officer equivalent to 2 months/year including on-costs

0

0

0

0

4513

Materials for Report

0

0

0

0

500

TOTAL

0

0

0

0

5013