Phebalium daviesii (Davies' Waxflower, St Helens' Waxflower)

Advice to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage from the Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) on Amendments to the list of Threatened Species under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)

1. Scientific name, common name (where appropriate), major taxon group

Phebalium daviesii (Davies' Waxflower, St Helens' Waxflower)

2. National Context

The species is endemic to Tasmania. The species is currently listed as endangered under the EPBC Act and the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995.

3. How judged by TSSC in relation to the EPBC Act criteria.

TSSC judges the species to be eligible for listing as critically endangered under the EPBC Act. The justification against the criteria is as follows:

Criterion 1 - Decline in numbers

There is no quantitative data available against this criterion.

Criterion 2 - Geographic distribution

The geographic distribution of the species is precarious for the survival of the species and is very restricted. The species is known from a single population. The area of occupancy is 0.03ha and the extent of occurrence is 0.0003km2. Population decline has been observed in census figures and is projected to continue due to the ongoing threat of trampling or grazing by livestock, clearing, flooding and limited recruitment.

Therefore, the species is eligible for listing as critically endangered under this criterion.

Criterion 3 - Population size and decline in numbers or distribution

The total number of mature individuals is very low, 29 plants having been recorded in dedicated surveys in a single population. A decline in the number of mature individuals has been observed and is projected to continue due to persisting threats and limited recruitment to the population. The geographic distribution of the species is precarious for its survival.

Therefore, the species is eligible for listing as critically endangered under this criterion.

Criterion 4 - Population size

The total number of mature individuals is extremely low, the population recorded to be 29 in a single population.

Therefore, the species is eligible for listing as critically endangered under this criterion.

Criterion 5 - Probability of extinction in the wild

There is no quantitative data available against this criterion.

4. Conclusion

The geographic distribution of the species is precarious for the survival of the species and is very restricted. The species is known from a single population. The area of occupancy is 0.03ha and the extent of occurrence is 0.0003km2. The total number of mature individuals is extremely low, 29 plants having been recorded in dedicated surveys. Population decline has been observed and is projected to continue due to the ongoing threats of trampling or grazing by livestock, clearing, flooding and limited recruitment.

5. Recommendation

TSSC recommends that the list referred to in section 178 of the EPBC Act be amended by
transferring from the endangered category to the critically endangered category:

Phebalium daviesii (Davies' Waxflower, St Helens' Waxflower)