Approved Recovery Plan



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Approved Recovery Plan





Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub Endangered Ecological Community Recovery Plan



February 2004


Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW)

© Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW), 2004.

This work is copyright, however material presented in this plan may be copied for personal use or published for educational purposes, providing that any extracts are fully acknowledged. Apart from this and any other use as permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part may be reproduced without prior written permission from the DEC.
The NPWS is part of the Department of Environment and Conservation
Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW)

43 Bridge Street (PO Box 1967) Hurstville NSW 2220

Ph: (02) 9585 6444 www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au

Requests for information or comments regarding this recovery plan should be directed to:- The Director-General, Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW)



c/- Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub Recovery Program Coordinator

Conservation Programs and Planning, Metropolitan Region Environment Protection and Regulation Division Department of Environment and Conservation

PO Box 1967

HURSTVILLE NSW 2220

Ph: (02) 9585 6678
Cover photo: P.H. Glass, Jennifer St. La Perouse
This plan should be cited as the following

NSW Department of Environment and Conservation (2004) Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub Endangered Ecological Community Recovery Plan. NSW Department of Environment and Conservation, Hurstville.


ISBN 0 7313 6763 4

Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub

Recovery Plan
Executive Summary

This document constitutes the formal Commonwealth and New South Wales Recovery Plan for the Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub endangered ecological community. It identifies the actions to be taken to ensure the long-term viability of Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub in nature and the parties who will carry these out.


Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub (ESBS) is listed as endangered on Schedule 1 Part 3 of the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 and as endangered under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. It is a sclerophyllous heath/scrub community that once occupied approximately 5,300 hectares between North Head and Botany Bay in the Sydney Basin Bioregion. Today, only

146 hectares of ESBS remains in small, isolated remnants on a range of tenures including private, Local, State and Commonwealth Government land.


ESBS occurs on disjunct patches of nutrient poor, aeolian dune sand and may contain small patches of woodland, low forest or limited wetter areas, depending on site topography and hydrology. Commonly recorded species of the community include Banksia aemula, Banksia ericifolia, Banksia serrata, Eriostemon australasius, Lepidosperma laterale, Leptospermum laevigatum, Monotoca elliptica, Pteridium esculentum, Ricinocarpos pinifolius and Xanthorrhoea resinifera.
A major threat to ESBS is the further loss and fragmentation of habitat as a consequence of clearing and development. Other known threats include: altered nutrient flows and hydrological regimes; weed invasion; inappropriate fire regimes; mowing, slashing and the inappropriate use of herbicides; grazing by horses and rabbits; over shading; infection by Phytophthora cinnamomi; erosion and physical damage from surface water run-off, bicycles, motor vehicles, horses, rabbits and excessive pedestrian use; inappropriate plantings; factors affecting pollination and seed dispersal processes; seed and wildflower collection; and the dumping of rubbish (including construction materials and green waste).
This recovery plan describes our current understanding of ESBS, documents the management actions undertaken to date, and outlines a recovery program over the next five years.
To provide for the future recovery of ESBS, this plan advocates a recovery program that:
• maps, assesses and monitors the condition of all ESBS remnants;

• ensures that ESBS remnants are not destroyed and that an increased level of legislative protection is provided over land that provides habitat for ESBS;

• favours in-situ protection and the management of threats at ESBS sites;

• raises public awareness of ESBS and encourages active community participation in its conservation; and

• examines the ecological aspects of ESBS which will inform management decisions regarding the long- term conservation of the community.
It is intended that this recovery plan will be implemented over a five-year period. Recovery actions will largely be implemented using existing resources of various NSW government agencies and community groups. The total cost to implement the plan is $98,000 over five years, however this does not include the cost of preparing and implementing plans of management.




Tony Fleming Bob Debus MP

A/Director-General Minister for the Environment

Acknowledgments
This recovery plan was prepared through joint funding from the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (which is now part of the NSW Department of Environment and Conservation) and Environment Australia (Commonwealth Endangered Species Project No. 20761).
The NSW Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) would like to thank the following people and organisations for their assistance during the preparation of the plan: Paul Ibbetson, Bronwyn Conyers and Dionne Coburn (DEC); Daniel Hirschfeld, Tina Digby and Tony Watson (Randwick Council); Michael Buckley (Waverley Council); Dannielle Kirton (Botany Council); Woollahra Council and Manly Council; Michael Mathias, Sonya Dare, Anthony Fitzsimmons and Andrew Freeman (Department of Defence); Robyn Sim and Nick Stroinovsky (Sydney Water Corporation); Nicole Wilmot (Eastern Beaches/Botany Bay CMC); Associate Professor Paul Adam (University of NSW); Judith Peters and Nicola Bryden (Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust); Ken Turner (previously Department of Land and Water Conservation); Energy Australia, Enerserve and Telstra; and the Commonwealth Department of Finance and Administration.
Suzanne O’Neil and Martin Bremner (DEC) are acknowledged for editing the draft and final versions of the plan respectively.
The DEC would also like to acknowledge the members of the local Randwick community who have been, and continue to be, actively involved in the conservation of ESBS.

Table of Contents

1 Introduction ..................................................................................................................................................... 1

2 Legislative Context.......................................................................................................................................... 1

2.1 LEGAL STATUS ......................................................................................................................................... 1

2.2 RECOVERY PLAN PREPARATION................................................................................................................ 1

2.3 RECOVERY PLAN IMPLEMENTATION ......................................................................................................... 1

2.4 CRITICAL HABITAT .................................................................................................................................. 2

2.5 KEY THREATENING PROCESSES................................................................................................................ 2

2.6 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT ............................................................................................................... 3

3 Conservation Status ......................................................................................................................................... 3

4 Distribution and habitat ................................................................................................................................... 3

4.1 HISTORICAL DISTRIBUTION....................................................................................................................... 3

4.2 CURRENT DISTRIBUTION........................................................................................................................... 4

4.3 HABITAT .................................................................................................................................................. 4

4.3.1 Landform and geology ........................................................................................................................... 4

4.3.2 Climate ................................................................................................................................................... 4

4.4 TENURE AND ZONING ............................................................................................................................... 4

5 Description ...................................................................................................................................................... 4

5.1 SCIENTIFIC DESCRIPTION .......................................................................................................................... 4

5.2 DISTINGUISHING THE ESBS COMMUNITY ................................................................................................. 7

6 Ecological Processes ....................................................................................................................................... 7

6.1 FIRE ECOLOGY ......................................................................................................................................... 7

6.2 SOIL SEED BANK ECOLOGY ....................................................................................................................... 7

6.3 DISTURBANCE REGIMES ........................................................................................................................... 8

7 Previous Management Actions ........................................................................................................................ 9

7.1 ECOLOGICAL STUDIES .............................................................................................................................. 9

7.2 IN-SITU PROTECTION ................................................................................................................................9

7.3 RECOVERY TEAM...................................................................................................................................... 9

7.4 ESBS PROFILE AND EIA GUIDELINES ....................................................................................................... 9

7.5 ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT ............................................................................................................... 9

8 Management Issues ......................................................................................................................................... 9

8.1 LEVEL OF CURRENT UNDERSTANDING ...................................................................................................... 9

8.2 THREATENING PROCESSES ........................................................................................................................ 9

8.2.1 Habitat loss and fragmentation ............................................................................................................... 9

8.2.2 Habitat degradation ................................................................................................................................ 9

8.3 ECOLOGICAL RESTORATION ................................................................................................................... 10

8.4 ABILITY TO RECOVER ............................................................................................................................. 10

9 Proposed Recovery Objectives, Actions and Performance Criteria .............................................................. 10

9.1 SURVEY AND ASSESSMENT .......................................................................................................................... 10

9.2 RESERVATION/PROTECTION OF THE COMMUNITY......................................................................................... 10

9.3 THREAT MANAGEMENT AND ECOLOGICAL RESTORATION ............................................................................ 11

9.4 COMMUNITY AWARENESS, EDUCATION AND INVOLVEMENT ........................................................................ 12

9.5 RESEARCH ................................................................................................................................................... 12

10 Consideration of social and economic consequences ................................................................................ 13

10.1 SOCIAL CONSEQUENCES ......................................................................................................................... 13

10.2 ECONOMIC CONSEQUENCES .................................................................................................................... 13

11 Implementation .......................................................................................................................................... 13

11.1 IMPLEMENTATION COSTS........................................................................................................................ 13

12 Preparation details ..................................................................................................................................... 13

12.1 DATE OF LAST AMENDMENT ................................................................................................................... 13

12.2 REVIEW DATE ......................................................................................................................................... 13

13 Contacts ..................................................................................................................................................... 14

13.1 RECOVERY TEAM ................................................................................................................................... 14

14 References ................................................................................................................................................. 14



List of Tables
Table 1: General ESBS site details .......................................................................................................................... 5

Table 2: In-situ conservation measures undertaken at ESBS sites .......................................................................... 8



List of Figures
Figure 1: ESBS distribution map

List of Appendices
Appendix 1: ESBS profile and EIA guidelines Appendix 2: Recovery Plan cost schedule Appendix 3: Site details

Appendix 4: Site maps

Appendix 5: Summary of advice from the NSW Scientific Committee



1 Introduction
Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub (ESBS) is a sclerophyllous heath/scrub community that occurs on disjunct patches of nutrient poor aeolian dune sand along the Sydney coast. Small patches of woodland, low forest or limited wetter areas may be present within ESBS, depending on site topography and hydrology. Common species of the community include Banksia aemula, B. ericifolia, B. serrata, Eriostemon australasius, Lepidosperma laterale, Leptospermum laevigatum, Monotoca elliptica, Pteridium esculentum, Ricinocarpos pinifolius and Xanthorrhoea resinifera (Benson & Howell 1990a, 1900b & 1994, NSW Scientific Committee 2002).
ESBS once occupied approximately 5,300 hectares between North Head and Botany Bay. Today, only

146 hectares of the community remains in isolated remnants, ranging in size from 0.06 to 69 hectares. These remnants occur across a range of tenures, including private, Local, State and Commonwealth Government land.


A major threat to ESBS is the further loss and fragmentation of habitat as a consequence of clearing and development. Other threats to the community include: altered nutrient flows and hydrological regimes; weed invasion; inappropriate fire regimes; over shading; mowing, slashing and the inappropriate use of herbicides; grazing by horses and rabbits; infection by Phytophthora cinnamomi; erosion and physical damage from surface water run-off, bicycles, motor vehicles, horses, rabbits and excessive pedestrian use; inappropriate plantings; factors affecting pollination and seed dispersal processes; seed and wildflower collection; and the dumping of rubbish (including construction materials and greenwaste).
ESBS has significant cultural value to local indigenous groups. Indigenous people in the La Perouse area have traditionally used ESBS plant species for shelter, medicine, food and a range of ceremonial purposes. These same uses are likely to have occurred at other ESBS sites. ESBS plant species are still utilised today by local indigenous groups for medicinal purposes and in events such as burial ceremonies.
This recovery plan describes our current understanding of ESBS, documents the management actions undertaken to date, and outlines a recovery program for this endangered community over the next five years.

2 Legislative Context
2.1 Legal status
The Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub in the Sydney Basin Bioregion ecological community is listed as endangered on Part 3 Schedule 1 of the New South Wales Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (TSC Act). Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub of the Sydney Region is listed as an endangered ecological community under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
2.2 Recovery plan preparation
The EPBC Act (Commonwealth) and the TSC Act (NSW) require the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and the Director-General of the NSW Department of Environment and Conservation to prepare recovery plans for all Commonwealth listed species and communities, and State listed species, populations and ecological communities respectively. Both legislative instruments include specific requirements for the matters to be addressed by recovery plans and the process for preparing recovery plans.
This plan satisfies the provisions of both the EPBC Act and the TSC Act and as such, there will only be one recovery plan operating for ESBS.
2.3 Recovery plan implementation
The TSC Act requires that a public authority must take any appropriate measures available to implement actions included in a recovery plan for which they have agreed to be responsible. Public authorities and councils that are responsible for the implementation of recovery plan actions are required by the TSC Act to report on the measures taken to implement those actions. In addition, the Act specifies that public authorities must not make decisions that are inconsistent with the provisions of the plan.
The NSW public authorities relevant to this plan are the Department of Environment and Conservation, Botany Council, Randwick Council, Waverley Council, Manly Council, Sydney Water Corporation, Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust, Energy Australia, the Department of Lands, the Department of Infrastructure, Planning and Natural Resources, the Department of Education and Training, Landcom and the Department of Community Services.
The Commonwealth agencies relevant to this plan are the Department of Finance and Administration,


Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) Page 1

the Department of Defence, the Sydney Harbour

Federation Trust, and Telstra.


The EPBC Act states that the Commonwealth must implement a recovery plan to the extent to which it applies to Commonwealth areas. Commonwealth areas relevant to this recovery plan include Department of Defence and Sydney Harbour Federation Trust lands at North Head (Manly), Department of Defence lands at Bundock Street (Randwick) and Department of Finance and Administration lands at Malabar Headland.
Consequently, public authorities that manage land that contains ESBS must, as the responsible land manager, manage the site in accordance with this recovery plan. Relevant land management issues include noxious weed and pest control, and fire and habitat management. Likewise, the DEC must facilitate research in accordance with the priorities identified in this plan and subject to the controls outlined in this plan.


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