Fitzgerald biosphere recovery plan



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Appendix 4: Priority Species Criteria



Department of Environment and Conservation Priority Flora and Fauna Lists

Possibly threatened species that do not meet survey criteria are added to the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) Priority Flora and Priority Fauna Lists under Priorities 1, 2 or 3. These three categories are ranked in order of priority for survey and evaluation of conservation status so that consideration can be given to their declaration as threatened flora or fauna. Species that are adequately known, are rare but not threatened, or meet criteria for Near Threatened, or that have been recently removed from the threatened list for other than taxonomic reasons, are placed in Priority 4. These species require regular monitoring. Conservation Dependent species are placed in Priority 5.


Priority One: Poorly-known species

Species that are known from one or a few collections or sight records (generally less than five), all on lands not managed for conservation, e.g. agricultural or pastoral lands, urban areas, Shire, Westrail and Main Roads WA road, gravel and soil reserves, and active mineral leases and under threat of habitat destruction or degradation. Species may be included if they are comparatively well known from one or more localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements and appear to be under immediate threat from known threatening processes.


Priority Two: Poorly-known species

Species that are known from one or a few collections or sight records (generally less than five), some of which are on lands not under imminent threat of habitat destruction or degradation, e.g. national parks, conservation parks, nature reserves, State forest, vacant Crown land, water reserves, etc. Species may be included if they are comparatively well known from one or more localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements and appear to be under threat from known threatening processes.


Priority Three: Poorly-known species

Species that are known from collections or sight records from several localities not under imminent threat, or from few but widespread localities with either large population size or significant remaining areas of apparently suitable habitat, much of it not under imminent threat. Species may be included if they are comparatively well known from several localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements and known threatening processes exist that could affect them.


Priority Four: Rare, Near Threatened and other species in need of monitoring

(a) Rare. Species that are considered to have been adequately surveyed, or for which sufficient knowledge is available, and that are considered not currently threatened or in need of special protection, but could be if present circumstances change. These species are usually represented on conservation lands.

(b) Near Threatened. Species that are considered to have been adequately surveyed and that do not qualify for Conservation Dependent, but that are close to qualifying for Vulnerable.

(c) Species that have been removed from the list of threatened species during the past five years for reasons other than taxonomy.


Priority Five: Conservation Dependent species

Species that are not threatened but are subject to a specific conservation program, the cessation of which would result in the species becoming threatened within five years.



Department of Environment and Conservation Priority Ecological Community List

Possible threatened ecological communities that do not meet survey criteria or that are not adequately defined are added to the Priority Ecological Community Lists under Priorities 1, 2 and 3.

These three categories are ranked in order of priority for survey and/or definition of the community, and evaluation of conservation status, so that consideration can be given to their declaration as threatened ecological communities. Ecological Communities that are adequately known, and are rare but not threatened or meet criteria for Near Threatened, or that have been recently removed from the threatened list, are placed in Priority 4. These ecological communities require regular monitoring. Conservation Dependent ecological communities are placed in Priority 5.
Priority One: Poorly-known ecological communities

Ecological communities with apparently few, small occurrences, all or most not actively managed for conservation (e.g. within agricultural or pastoral lands, urban areas, active mineral leases) and for which current threats exist. Communities may be included if they are comparatively well-known from one or more localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements, and/or are not well defined, and appear to be under immediate threat from known threatening processes across their range.


Priority Two: Poorly-known ecological communities

Communities that are known from few small occurrences, all or most of which are actively managed for conservation (e.g. within national parks, conservation parks, nature reserves, State forest, unallocated Crown land, water reserves, etc.) and not under imminent threat of destruction or degradation. Communities may be included if they are comparatively well known from one or more localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements, and/or are not well defined, and appear to be under threat from known threatening processes.


Priority Three: Poorly known ecological communities

(i) Communities that are known from several to many occurrences, a significant number or area of which are not under threat of habitat destruction or degradation or;

(ii) communities known from a few widespread occurrences, which are either large or within significant remaining areas of habitat in which other occurrences may occur, much of it not under imminent threat, or;

(iii) communities made up of large, and/or widespread occurrences, that may or not be represented in the reserve system, but are under threat of modification across much of their range from processes such as grazing by domestic and/or feral stock, and inappropriate fire regimes.

Communities may be included if they are comparatively well known from several localities but do not meet adequacy of survey requirements and/or are not well defined, and known threatening processes exist that could affect them.
Priority Four: Ecological communities that are adequately known, rare but not threatened or meet criteria for Near Threatened, or that have been recently removed from the threatened list. These communities require regular monitoring.

(a) Rare. Ecological communities known from few occurrences that are considered to have been adequately surveyed, or for which sufficient knowledge is available, and that are considered not currently threatened or in need of special protection, but could be if present circumstances change. These communities are usually represented on conservation lands.

(b) Near Threatened. Ecological communities that are considered to have been adequately surveyed and that do not qualify for Conservation Dependent, but that are close to qualifying for Vulnerable.

(c) Ecological communities that have been removed from the list of threatened communities during the past five years.


Priority Five: Conservation Dependent ecological communities

Ecological communities that are not threatened but are subject to a specific conservation program, the cessation of which would result in the community becoming threatened within five years.




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