National recovery plan for the Mogumber and Narrogin Bell (Darwinia carnea)
Department of Environment and Conservation, Kensington, 2009
- National recovery plan for the Mogumber and Narrogin Bell (Darwinia carnea) (PDF - 258 KB) | (RTF - 3.2 MB)
- Scientific Name: Darwinia carnea
- Common Name: Mogumber Bell and Narrogin Bell
- Family: Myrtaceae
- Flowering Period: October - November
- DEC Region: Wheatbelt, Swan
- DEC District: Great Southern, Avon Mortlock, Perth Hills
- Shire: Narrogin, Victoria Plains, Cuballing, Chittering
- Recovery Team: Great Southern District, Avon Mortlock District and Swan Region Threatened Flora and Communities Recovery Teams
- NRM Region: South West, Northern Agriculture, Swan
Illustrations and/or further information:
Atkins, K. (2008). Declared Rare and Priority Flora List for Western Australia. Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia Brown, A., Thomson-Dans, C. and Marchant, N. (1998). Western Australia’s Threatened Flora. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia. pp 78; Durell, G.S and Buehrig, R.M. (2001) Declared Rare and Poorly Known Flora in the Narrogin District. Western Australian Wildlife Management Program No. 30. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia. pp 35-6; Patrick, S. and Brown, A. (2001) Declared Rare and Poorly Known Flora in the Moora District: Wildlife Program No 28. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia. pp 42-3; Leigh, J., Boden, R. and Briggs, J. (1984) Extinct and Endangered Plants of Australia. South Melbourne, The Macmillan Company of Australia Pty Ltd. pp 338; Hopper, S., Van Leeuwen, S., Brown, A. and Patrick, S. (1990). Western Australia’s Endangered Flora. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia; DEC (2007) Western Australian Herbarium FloraBase 2 – Information on the Western Australian Flora (Accessed 2007). Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia. http://www.calm.wa.gov.au/science/ .
Analysis of outputs and effectiveness of Interim Recovery Plan (IRP) 10 (1996-1999) prepared by E. Holland, K. Kershaw and A. Brown
The criteria for success in the previous IRP (threatening processes identified within the IRP have been reduced or removed within the three year period) has been met.
Grazing by sheep is no longer considered a threat to subpopulations 3a and 3c as they have now been fenced, however, grazing by other animals has been recorded and recovery actions included within this IRP aim to address this threat.
Inappropriate fire regimes are considered to be an ongoing threat to this species and its habitat. Firebreaks have been constructed in bushland containing populations of Darwinia carnea and land managers have been informed of the need to protect the plants. Recovery actions listed within this IRP aim to further address this issue.
Rabbit control has reduced the level of threat on Population 1, although ongoing control is required. Recovery actions in this IRP further address this issue.
Weeds are a minor issue for Darwinia carnea. Population 1 is threatened by weed invasion, but weed control is being conducted at this site. Recovery actions involving weed control are ongoing and included within this IRP.
The number of known subpopulations has increased from six to nine and the number of known plants in populations has increased from 269 to 515. The significant increase in mature plants is due to three translocations which account for 437 (85%) of plants.
Recovery actions carried out in the previous plan include:
Action 1 Fence subpopulation 5b (now subpopulation 3c)
Action 3 Preserve genetic diversity of the species
Action 4 Implement rabbit control
Action 5 Monitor populations
Action 1 Conduct further surveys
Action 2 Implement weed control
Action 3 Information dissemination
Action 4 Conduct research
Action 6 Translocation
Essential recovery actions 2, 3, 4 and 5 and desirable recovery actions 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 included in the previous plan are ongoing and are included in this revised plan.
New recovery actions included in this plan are:
Action 1 Coordinate recovery actions
Action 2 Liaise with relevant land managers and indigenous groups
Action 4 Continue to monitor and supplement translocation projects
Action 9 Develop and implement fire and soil disturbance trials
Action 10 Develop and implement an insect pest control strategy and follow-up with regular monitoring and additional control if required
Action 16 Map habitat critical to the survival of Darwinia carnea
Action 18 Review the plan and the need for further recovery actions
Darwinia carnea was listed as Declared Rare Flora under the Western Australian Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 in 1980 and is currently ranked as Critically Endangered (CR) under the World Conservation Union (IUCN 1994) Red List criteria B1+2c, based on the area of occupancy estimated to be less that 10km², populations being severely fragmented and a continuing decline in area of occupancy and quality of habitat. The main threats include grazing, drought, fragmentation of habitat, inappropriate fire regimes, weeds, trampling and small population size. The Narrogin and Mogumber plants are considered to be two different taxonomic forms. The Mogumber Darwinia carnea is the type form. It is possible that the two forms are separate subspecies, this has not yet been confirmed but genetic studies are under way. The species is listed as Endangered (EN) under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
Darwinia carnea is known from two wild populations and three translocated populations, totaling approximately 515 mature individuals.
Darwinia carnea is a small shrub up to 20 to 30 cm tall. Leaves are narrow, keeled, 6 to 10 mm long and are arranged in opposite pairs along the stem. Flower head is surrounded by broad, yellowish-green to pinkish-red bracts, up to 3 cm long. Bracts conceal about eight tubular flowers with short, blunt lobes, about 1.5 mm long, and five white petals, 4 mm long (Brown et al 1998). The Mogumber form is taller with larger inflorescences and different colored bracts compared to the Narrogin form (Brown et al 1998).
Darwinia carnea occurs on lateritic gravel and sandy red/brown loams, on hilltops near Narrogin and amongst massive laterite on breakaways near Mogumber, in open Eucalyptus woodland over Dryandra heath.
Habitat critical to the survival of the species, and important populations:
Given that Darwinia carnea is ranked as CR, it is considered that all known habitat for wild and translocated populations is critical to its survival, and that all wild and translocated populations are important populations. Habitat critical to the survival of Darwinia carnea includes the area of occupancy, areas of similar habitat surrounding and linking populations (these providing potential habitat for population expansion and for pollinators), additional occurrences of similar habitat that may contain undiscovered populations of the species or be suitable for future translocations and the local catchment for the surface and/or groundwater that maintains the habitat of the species.
Benefits to other species or ecological communities:
Recovery actions implemented to improve the quality or security of the habitat for Darwinia carnea will also improve the status of associated native vegetation. No threatened species or ecological communities are known to occur within the same habitat as D. carnea, although Lasiopetalum rotundifolium (Endangered) is known to occur near Population 5T and Asterolasia nivea (Vulnerable) is known to occur near population 7T.
This plan is fully consistent with the aims and recommendations of the Convention on Biological Diversity, ratified by Australia in June 1993, and will assist in implementing Australia’s responsibilities under that convention. Darwinia carnea is not listed under any specific international treaty and this IRP does not affect Australia’s obligations under any other international agreements.
Involvement of the Indigenous community is being sought through the South West Aboriginal Land and Sea Council (SWALSC) and the Department of Indigenous Affairs to assist in the identification of cultural values for land occupied by Darwinia carnea, or groups with a cultural connection to land that is important for the species conservation and to determine whether there are any issues or interests identified in the plan. A search of the Department of Indigenous Affairs Aboriginal Heritage Sites Register has identified no sites of Aboriginal significance at or near populations of the species. Where no role is identified for the indigenous community associated with this species in the development of the recovery plan, opportunities may exist through cultural interpretation and awareness of the species.
Indigenous involvement in the implementation of recovery actions will be encouraged. Continued liaison between DEC and the indigenous community will identify areas in which collaboration will assist implementation of recovery actions.
Social and economic impact:
The implementation of this recovery plan is unlikely to cause significant adverse social and economic impacts but, as two populations and three subpopulations are located on private property, their protection has the potential to affect private activities, development and asset protection measures on the sites.
Stakeholders potentially affected by the implementation of this plan include owners of private property and the Shire of Narrogin.
Evaluation of the plan’s performance:
DEC in conjunction with the Great Southern District, Swan Region and Avon Mortlock District Threatened Flora Recovery Teams (GSDTFRT, SRTFCRT and AMDTFRT) will evaluate the performance of this IRP. In addition to annual reporting on progress and evaluation against the criteria for success and failure, the plan will be reviewed following five years of implementation.
Completed Recovery Actions
- Relevant land managers have been formally notified of the presence of the species, its location on land under their management and their legal obligations to protect it.
- Clonal lines from vegetative material collected prior to 1970 from a presumed extinct Mogumber population of D. carnea have been grown by the Wildflower Society and Lullfitz Nurseries.
- Fencing of all extant populations except 3b has been undertaken.
- A rabbit baiting program is in place for Population 1 in Narrogin.
- DEC’s Threatened Flora Seed Centre (TFSC) holds eleven collections of seed from Narrogin and Mogumber, including seeds from translocated populations (5T and 6T).
- The Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority (BGPA) have cultivated considerable numbers of clones in their nursery for translocation.
- Initial testing of three seedlings by DEC Science Division indicates the species is resistant to the Dieback water mould Phytophthora cinnamoni.
- Two translocations of the Narrogin Bell form, using cloned material from Population 1 have been conducted (Populations 5T and 6T). A progress report on the outcomes and results from the translocation was produced in 2004.
- A translocation of the Mogumber Bell form, using cloned material from Population 3, was conducted in September 2006 (Population 7T).
- The species has received considerable coverage through print and electronic media. DEC produced and circulated an information poster in 1999 and 2000. Articles have been published in local and State newspapers, LANDSCOPE and interviews with DEC staff have featured on local radio.
- DEC staff and community members have searched for Darwinia carnea in areas of similar remnant vegetation and soil type and no new populations have been located, however, suitable translocation sites have been identified.
Ongoing and future recovery actions
- DEC’s AMDTFRT, SRTFCRT and GSDTFRT continue to monitor all known populations.
- DEC’s AMDTFRT, SRTFCRT and GSDTFRT staff members are overseeing the implementation of this IRP and will include it in their annual report to DEC’s Corporate Executive and funding bodies.
The objective of this IRP is to abate identified threats and maintain or enhance viable in situ populations to ensure the long-term preservation of the species in the wild.
Criterion for success:
The number of populations have increased and/or the number of individuals in populations have increased by ten per cent or more over the five year term of the plan.
Criterion for failure:
The number of populations have decreased and/or the number of individuals in populations have decreased by ten per cent or more over the five year term of the plan.
- Coordinate recovery actions
- Liaise with relevant land managers and indigenous groups
- Monitor populations
- Continue to monitor and supplement the translocation projects
- Collect seed and other material to preserve genetic diversity
- Fence subpopulation 3b and carry out routine maintenance when required
- Investigate genetic diversity and confirm taxonomic status
- Develop and implement a fire management strategy
- Develop and implement fire and soil disturbance trials
- Maintain a rabbit control program
- Develop and implement an insect pest control strategy and follow-up with regular monitoring and additional control when required
- Achieve long-term protection of habitat
- Conduct further surveys
- Obtain biological and ecological information
- Undertake weed control and follow-up with regular monitoring
- Map habitat critical to the survival of Darwinia carnea
- Promote awareness
- Review the plan and need for further recovery actions