A SURVEY OF THE FLORA OF REMNANT VEGETATION WITHIN THE
for the Marchagee Catchment Group of the Coorow Land Conservation District
Appendix 1 - List of plants collected in the
Agriculture WA under the State Salinity Action Plan. The Marchagee Focus Catchment is just less than
100,000 hectares and contains 32 land holdings. Since 1997 the catchment group has been undergoing an
intensive farm and catchment planning process. In conjunction with landowners a "focus catchment support
team" has brought together information and recommendations on hydrology, remnant vegetation and
revegetation, nature conservation, drainage, agronomy and soil types. On the basis of this information the
Bushcare Project Officer, Glenn Yeatman, selected 11 plots of remnant bushland on private farms to be
included in the 2000 flora survey. The present report is based on visits to these 11 remnants that lie on 10 of
the 32 farms in the catchment. The surveys are intended to provide information about the biodiversity of the
various remnants with the aim of establishing the priority for preservation, by fencing, of the remnants and to
determine the value of linking some of them by the planting of corridors of vegetation. At most sites the
local landholder(s) joined the survey and provided invaluable background information about the history of
the remnants. The 2000 survey complements that undertaken in 1999, when 20 remnants were covered.
Two of the remnants surveyed in 2000 had also been examined in 1999.
The vegetation of this part of the northern wheatbelt is known to be very diverse. The Marchagee
between 1975 and 1977 (Dell et al. 1979). The area was covered by Beard in his vegetation mapping project
(Beard 1976, 1979), and part of the north of the catchment was covered in a report on Koobabbie Farm in
1990 (Davies 1990). Other less formal surveys have been conducted and the results of these have been
consulted where possible.
250 and 300 m above sea level. The streams in the catchment drain into an extensive system of salt creeks,
lakes and pans, that flow through the catchment as a horseshoe-shaped ephemeral watercourse. This rises in
the east of the catchment, flows south, turns west and then north, to leave the catchment in the north west.
Many of the remnants are on the upper slopes and rocky watersheds of the landscape, but special efforts were
made in 2000 to cover run-on sites. The salt creek system provides an existing, continuous corridor of
remnant vegetation that will be of great value in the rehabilitation programme.
per year, of which about two thirds falls from May to August. Only three months, June, July and August,
have a mean relative humidity above 50%, with an annual mean of about 35%. Evaporation at Carnamah
(35 km north west) is 2125 mm per year. Mean maximum temperature for the hottest month at Carnamah is
35.8oC and mean minimum temperature for the coolest month is 18.0oC. Extreme temperatures are 45.7oC
and 0oC. Frosts are rare, occurring on average three days a year. Prevailing winds are from the south east in
summer and the north west in winter, and are light, except when the area receives the impact of a cyclonic
Gardner and Bennetts (1956). Figure 1 shows the classification of vegetation of Beard (1976, 1979) and the
location of the remnants surveyed in 1999 and 2000. The abbreviations on the map are:
Thicket with patches of heath on sandplain (Allocasuarina campestris thicket on stoney
and lateritic ground with shrubs >1 m tall, an incomplete canopy, projective foliage cover
10-30% and, on sandplain, mixed vegetation of dwarf shrubs <1 m tall with Allocasuarina)
(Eucalyptus loxophleba/E. salmonophloia of 10-25 m with an
incomplete canopy, projective foliage cover 10-30%)
(Eucalyptus loxophleba of 10-25 m with an incomplete canopy,
projective foliage cover 10-30%)
(Eucalyptus salmonophloia of 10-25 m with an incomplete canopy,
shrubs <1 m tall with Allocasuarina)
tall and dwarf shrubs <1 m tall with Allocasuarina)
Figure 1. Vegetation map of the Marchagee Catchment showing the sites at which the flora was sampled
Three visits were made to the Marchagee Catchment to conduct the flora survey. These took place
daisies (Asteraceae) and herbs were present, compared with the wet year 1999.
At each site two or more people walked through the remnant for several hours, usually either a
possible in the field, specimens were collected under CALM Licences No. SW005713 and SW006455 and
taken to Perth for subsequent identification in the WA Herbarium. Introduced plants were not
systematically recorded but are marked with an asterisk (*) in the lists.
The lists of plant taxa identified in individual sites are given below. A composite list of the 406
given a Priority listing by CALM and three are declared rare flora. The present section gives a brief
description of each site, numbered 3, 5, and 21-29, and a composite list of the plant taxa found at that site.
Where new taxa were identified in 2000 a cross (+) has been placed in front of the plant name in the
composite list in Appendix 1. Introduced plants were not systematically recorded but are marked with an
A low granite hill, with dense heath vegetation. Fenced for many
Site 5 Jack and Kathy Stone - "Block West of House Remnant"
Red gravel slope with granite outcrops, covered with dense heath and
Site 21 Beth Southcote - "Jaensch's Remnant"
Low in the landscape, with heath vegetation surrounding the wet
areas. 400 acres: has never been stocked. 52 native plant taxa.
Site 22 Frank and Geanie Craigo - "All Trees Remnant"
Approximately 40 ha. with poison in places under eucalypt woodland on red soils. 40
native plant taxa.
Dodonaea ? divaricata
Tall, proteaceous woodland on yellow sand, abutting a melaleuca
Site 24 Bevan O'Calligan - "Wandallah East Remnant"
Yellow sandplain with heath vegetation. 53 native plant taxa.
Site 25 Keith and Helen Falconer - "Woolberoo - Poison Patch Remnant"
Fenced 11 years ago; decomposed granite and gravel, with poison and
other heaths under mallees. 28 native plant taxa.
Site 26 John and Alison Doley - "South end of Koobabbie Lakes"
Salmon gum woodland on red soil and lakes with melaleuca thickets
on grey clay and red sandy loams. 71 native plant taxa.
Yellow sand; fenced at least 12 years. 35 native plant taxa.
Site 28 Beth and Sam Southcote - "Mason Road Remnant"
Heath on yellow sandplain; ungrazed for 5 years. 61 native plant taxa.
Site 29 Frank and Geanie Crago - "Jigsaw Remnant"
Wattle thickets on granite and gravel. 41 native plant taxa.
Surveys of the remnants in the Marchagee Catchment have now recorded a total of 398 native plant
representation of plant taxa when compared with the number of taxa recorded in surveys of other nearby
Landcare and Bushcare areas. Further taxa will certainly be added during the 2001 surveys, because each
species has different environmental requirements and some that have not responded well to conditions in
1999 and 2000 may be favoured by conditions in 2001.
Waddy Forest Catchment 41,000
0.8024 Wilton Well
The sites surveyed during 2000 varied in the number of taxa that they supported, as well as varying in
Site No. No. of taxa
No. of Priority taxa
No. of DRF taxa
An additional seven taxa listed by CALM as Priority Species were identified in the catchment in
2000 and the value of Maley's Garden Remnant in this regard was confirmed. It contains three examples of
Declared Rare Flora as well as two Priority Species. Each of the remnants surveyed in 2000 supported at
least one Priority Species, confirming the value of remnants on private land as havens for rare plants. The
sooner these remnants can be fenced and protected from grazing the better, especially if links can be
established bewteen them to facilitate the dispersal of fauna. Corridors 50 metres wide are better than
nothing, but ideally corridors should be 200 metres wide and contain dense understorey as well as canopy
trees. Three species can be highlighted as plants in need of urgent rehabilitation in the area, Eucalyptus
pyriformis, Hakea platysperma and Santalum spicatum. Two of these plants were not found in the
Marchagee Catchment but the area is within their range. A few senescent plants of Eucalyptus pyriformis
occur on the catchment, but no seedlings were found. Only dead plants of Hakea platysperma were found,
and no living specimens, although a few occur in the Waddy Forest Catchment. Santalum spicatum has been
pulled from most of the wheatbelt and is rare in the region. A few plants were found on the survey of the
Waddy Forest Catchment and some were found in the Inering (Carnamah) Catchment survey in 1991.
We are grateful to Glenn Yeatman who organised the surveys in 2000, and to Glenn, Nicole Lincoln and the
Diana Jewell and Bryan Curtis of Eneabba kindly accommodated SJD and DKL during the surveys, as well
as contributing from their knowledge of local plants. We are also grateful to Amy Worts and Chris Hancock
for help with the identification of specimens.
COMPOSITE LIST FOR THE WHOLE CATCHMENT, WITH 2000 ADDITIONS
MARKED WITH A +.
Beard, J.S. (1976). The Vegetation of the Perenjori Area. Vegmap Publications, Perth.
Beard, J.S. (1979). The Vegetation of the Moora and Hill River Areas. Vegmap Publications, Perth.
Davies, S.J.J.F. (1990). Report on a Survey of the Wildlife of Koobabbie, Coorow, March and September
Dell, J, A. Chapman, D.J. Kitchener and B.G. Muir. (1979). Biological Survey of the Western Australin
Wheatbelt. Part 9: Marchagee Nature Reserve. Records of the W. A. Museum. Supplement No. 8, 1-50.
Gardner, C. A. and Bennetts, H. W. (1956). The Toxic Plants of Western Australia. West Australian