Approved Conservation Advice
(s266B of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999)
Approved Conservation Advice for
Verticordia helichrysantha (Coast Featherflower)
This Conservation Advice has been developed based on the best available information at the
time this Conservation Advice was approved; this includes existing plans, records or
management prescriptions for this species.
shrub, growing to 20 cm high with clustered, crowded leaves. The leaves are linear, semi-
circular in cross-section, and grow to 6 mm long. The pale yellow flowers, 7 mm in diameter,
have oval petals with minute teeth, a hairy calyx tube 3 mm deep and a very long protruding
pink style, which grows to 15 mm in length. The style is slightly hooked at the apex and has
very fine hairs just below the stigma. The lobes of the calyx are finely ciliated at the fringe and
separated almost to the base. Flowering occurs intermittently between September and October
(Robinson & Coates, 1995; Brown et al., 1998).
Coast Featherflower is listed as vulnerable. This species is eligible for listing as vulnerable
under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth) (EPBC
Act) as, prior to the commencement of the EPBC Act, it was listed as vulnerable under
Schedule 1 of the Endangered Species Protection Act 1992 (Cwlth). Coast Featherflower is
also listed as declared rare flora under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 (Western Australia).
Coast Featherflower is known from five populations, one of which was imprecisely localised
and has not been seen since 1964, one of which has not been re-located since 1986 and three
remaining populations known to be extant. Three of the populations occur near Cape Riche and
one in Fitzgerald River National Park in Western Australia. Two populations occur on land
reserved for government purposes, one on conservation estate and one on unallocated Crown
land. There are an estimated 25 000 mature plants recorded from three populations. The fourth
population, however, could not be located in 1995 and has not been seen since 1986. Three of
the four populations have their area of occupancy recorded, which totalled 0.078 km
. Three of
size between 2001, with an estimated 5000 plants, and 2005 with approximately 10 000 and
has remained stable in size up until 2007, when last observed. Another population has also
increased in population size from 1000 plants in 1998, to 5000 plants in 2003. The other
population has remained unchanged in population size with 10 000 plants in 2002 and 2005,
while the population size trend of the last population is unknown as it has not been observed
since 1986 (DEC, 2008). The extent of occurrence is 81 km² (DEC, 2008).
This species is known to grow in very shallow greyish-brown sand over lateritic gravel over
spongelite, in association with very low open coastal heath (Brown et al., 1998).
This species occurs within the South Coast (Western Australia) Natural Resource Management
The distribution of this species is not known to overlap with any EPBC Act-listed threatened
Conservation Advice - Page 1 of 3
The main potential threats to Coast Featherflower include land clearing, inappropriate fire
regimes, road works, mining, dieback, and recreational activities such as four wheel driving.
This species regenerates poorly after substrate disturbance and land clearance. This species
regenerates from seed after fire, but too frequent fire may lead to localised extinction. This
species has a low to moderate risk from dieback caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi. Damage
from vehicle traffic has been observed (Robinson & Coates, 1995; Brown et al., 1998; EA,
2001; DEC, 2008).
Research priorities that would inform future regional and local priority actions include:
Design and implement a monitoring program or, if appropriate, support and enhance
impacts of threatening processes.
Undertake survey work in suitable habitat and potential habitat to locate any additional
previously observed at the shire reserve in Kamballup (Robinson & Coates, 1995).
Undertake seed germination and/or vegetative propagation trials to determine the
Regional and Local Priority Actions
The following regional and local priority recovery and threat abatement actions can be done to
support the recovery of Coast Featherflower.
Habitat Loss, Disturbance and Modification
the need to adapt them if necessary.
Identify populations of high conservation priority.
Ensure road widening and maintenance activities (or other infrastructure or development
occurs does not adversely impact on known populations.
Control access routes to suitably constrain public access to known sites on public land.
Minimise adverse impacts from land use, including mining, at known sites.
Investigate formal conservation arrangements, management agreements and covenants on
inclusion of mitigative measures in bush fire risk management plans, risk register and/or
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Conservation Advice - Page 3 of 3
Diseases, Fungi and Parasites
Develop and implement suitable hygiene protocols to prevent known sites from outbreaks
Raise awareness of Coast featherflower within the local community. The development and
Establish and/or maintain partnerships with private landholders and managers of land on
Enable Recovery of Additional Sites and/or Populations
Undertake appropriate seed collection and storage.
Investigate options for linking, enhancing or establishing additional populations.
Implement national translocation protocols (Vallee et al., 2004) if establishing additional
This list does not necessarily encompass all actions that may be of benefit to Coast
Featherflower, but highlights those that are considered to be of highest priority at the time of
preparing the conservation advice.
These prescriptions were current at the time of publishing; please refer to the relevant agency’s
website for any updated versions.
Brown, A, Thomson-Dans, C & Marchant, N (Eds) 1998, Western Australia's Threatened Flora, Department of
Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia.
Department of Conservation and Land Management (CALM) 1991, Fitzgerald River National Park Management
Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) 2008, Records held in DEC’s Declared Flora Database and
Environment Australia (EA) 2001, Threat Abatement Plan for Dieback Caused by the Root-rot Fungus
Phytophthora cinnamomi, viewed 17 September 2008, <
Management Program No. 20, Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia.
Vallee, L, Hogbin, T, Monks, L, Makinson, B, Matthes, M & Rossetto, M 2004, Guidelines for the Translocation
of Threatened Plants in Australia (2
ed.), Australian Network for Plant Conservation, Canberra.