Department of Environment and Conservation
Interim Recovery Plans (IRPs) are developed within the framework laid down in Department of Conservation and Land
Management (CALM) Policy Statements Nos. 44 and 50. Note: the Department of CALM formally became the
Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) in July 2006. DEC will continue to adhere to these Policy Statements
until they are revised and reissued.
IRPs outline the recovery actions that are required to urgently address those threatening processes most affecting the
ongoing survival of threatened taxa or ecological communities, and begin the recovery process.
DEC is committed to ensuring that threatened taxa and threatened ecological communities are conserved through the
preparation and implementation of Recovery Plans (RPs) or IRPs, and by ensuring that conservation action commences as
soon as possible and, in the case of Critically Endangered (CR) taxa, always within one year of endorsement of that rank by
This IRP will operate from April 2007 to March 2012 but will remain in force until withdrawn or replaced. It is intended
that, if the taxon is still ranked Endangered, this IRP will be reviewed after five years and the need for a further recovery
This IRP was approved by the Director of Nature Conservation on 30 April 2008. The allocation of staff time and provision
of funds identified in this IRP is dependent on budgetary and other constraints affecting DEC, as well as the need to
address other priorities.
Information in this IRP was accurate in April 2008.
This IRP was prepared with financial support from the Australian Government to be adopted as a National Recovery Plan
under the provisions of the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).
This IRP was prepared by Simon Cherriman
, Nicole Willers
and David Mitchell
Project Officer, DEC Swan Region, 20 Dick Perry Ave Bentley, WA, 6102.
Flora Conservation Officer, DEC Swan Region, 20 Dick Perry Ave Bentley, WA, 6102.
Regional Leader, Nature Conservation, DEC Swan Region, 20 Dick Perry Ave Bentley, WA, 6102.
The following people have provided assistance and advice in the preparation of this IRP:
Project Officer, Species and Communities Branch, DEC
Threatened Flora Coordinator, Species and Communities Branch, DEC
Flora Conservation Officer, Swan Region, DEC
Acting Principal Ecologist, Species and Communities Branch, DEC
Principle Research Scientist, Science Division, DEC
Horticulturalist, Botanic Garden and Parks Authority
Principal Research Scientist, Biodiversity Conservation Group, DEC
Director, Woodman Environmental Consultancy
Thanks also to the staff of the W.A. Herbarium for providing access to Herbarium databases and specimen information, and
DEC's Wildlife Branch for assistance.
This Recovery Plan should be cited as:
Department of Environment and Conservation (2009). Keighery’s Macarthuria (Macarthuria keigheryi) Recovery Plan,
Department of Environment and Conservation, Perth, Western Australia.
September – December, February – March
Swan and Midwest
Swan Coastal and Moora
Swan, Kalamunda and
Swan Region and Moora District
Threatened Flora and Communities
Recovery Teams (SRTFCRT, MDTFCRT)
Belmont and Canning
Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia; Brown, A., Thomson-Dans, C. and Merchant, N. (Eds)
(1998) Western Australia's Threatened Flora,. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia; Threatened
Ecological Community database (2007) Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia; Declared Endangered
Flora Database (2007) Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia; Close, D. & Dixon, K. (2005)
Research Plan for Conservation of Nationally Threatened Conospermum undulatum and Macarthuria keigheryi on
Westralia Airports Corporation Bushland, Kings Park and Botanic Gardens, Western Australia; Bush Forever Volume 2
Directory of Bush Forever Sites (2000) Department of Environmental Protection, Perth Western Australia; Evans, R., Willers,
N., and Mitchell, D. (2003) Threatened flora of Swan Region. Unpublished report to the Department of Conservation and
Land Management and Environment Australia; Keighery, B. (2001) Conservation Category Wetlands in Bush Forever Site
283 East of McDowell Street, Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia; Lepschi B. J. (1996) A
Taxonomic revision of Macarthuria. Nuytsia 11(1). 12-13; IUCN (2001) IUCN Red List Categories prepared by the IUCN
Species Survival Commission, as approved by the 51st meeting of the IUCN Council. Gland, Switzerland; Western Australian
Herbarium (2007) FloraBase -Information on the Western Australian Flora. Department of Environment and Conservation,
Western Australia. http://www.calm.wa.gov.au/science/.
B2ab(iii) as the area of occupancy is less than 500 km
, populations are severely fragmented and there is a continuing decline in the
weeds, grazing by rabbits, road maintenance and construction, inappropriate fire regimes, firebreak maintenance, and other impacts of
Description: Macarthuria keigheryi is a small erect shrub up to 40 cm tall with hairy, bright yellow to green stems. The leaves are
present mainly at the base of the stems and on young growth. They are narrowly obovate to elliptic in shape, 2.7 - 11.5 mm long and
0.7 - 3.5 mm broad. The flowers have five sepals that are hairy on the outside. The outer sepals are green, the inner are partly white and
membranous. The five petals are narrow, falling early. There are eight stamens joined at the base. The style is small, divided into
three. The seeds are normally round, black and shiny. Macarthuria keigheryi is distinguished from other members of the genus by a
dense covering of golden hairs on the stems and leaves. Additional details are available in the taxonomic description provided in
Habitat requirements: Macarthuria keigheryi is currently known from six populations over a range of approximately 160 km.
However, plants have not been recorded in two of these populations during recent surveys. One isolated population (recorded in 1991 and
last surveyed in 1996) occurs in the Cooljarloo area (Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) Midwest Region, Moora
District) west of Dandaragan. The other five are all within a 5 km radius of Welshpool and Kewdale in the Perth metropolitan area. The
species is found in low-lying winter-wet damp, grey/white sands and grows in open patches with low tree canopy cover among
heathland, jarrah (Eucalyptus marginata) and Allocasuarina/Banksia woodland at Welshpool and Kewdale; and
Welshpool/Kewdale area and Banksia menziesii, B. attenuata, Eucalyptus todtiana and Nuytsia floribunda in the Cooljarloo area
(Brown et al 1998; Keighery 2001; Atkins 2006).
Habitat critical to the survival of the species, and important populations: Habitat critical to the survival of the species
includes the area of occupancy of all known populations, areas of similar habitat surrounding known populations (low-
lying winter wet damp sands with Banksia and Kingia australis heathland or Banksia woodland) that provide potential
habitat for natural range extension), remnant vegetation that surrounds and links populations (necessary to allow pollinators
to move between populations), the local catchment area and ground water systems that maintain the damp-land habitat of
the species, and additional occurrences of similar habitat that may contain the species or be suitable for future
Given that this species is listed as Endangered and is known from just six populations, it is considered that all known
habitat for wild and any future translocated populations is habitat critical to its survival, and that all wild and any future
translocated populations are important populations.
of habitat of Macarthuria keigheryi will also protect the threatened flora species Conospermum undulatum (Vulnerable), the
Priority species Haloragis tenuifolia (P3) and three Threatened Ecological Communities (TEC’s) - (Banksia attenuata
woodland over species-rich dense shrublands Swan Coastal Plain (SCP) community type 20a (Endangered), Corymbia
Biological Diversity, ratified by Australia in June 1993, and will assist in implementing Australia’s responsibilities under
that Convention. Macarthuria keigheryi is not specifically listed under any international treaty, and therefore this plan does
not affect Australia’s obligations under any other international agreements.
of cultural values for land occupied by Macarthuria keigheryi, 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 that there are 34 artifact sites in the
vicinity of populations of the species covered by this IRP. 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: One population of Macarthuria keigheryi occurs on Commonwealth airport land and
negotiations will continue with the current land managers in regards to the future management of this population. The Midwest
population occurs within an area subject to a mining exploration lease. In this regard, the implementation of this IRP has the
potential to have some social and economic impact. Recovery actions include continued liaison between stakeholders with regard
to these areas.
Affected interests: Stakeholders potentially affected by the implementation of this plan include Westralia Airports
Corporation, Tiwest, Empire Oil and Gas, WA Planning Commission, Shires of Swan, Kalamunda and Dandaragan, Cities
of Belmont and Canning, Conservation Commission and DEC.
Evaluation of the plan’s performance: DEC will evaluate the performance of this IRP in conjunction with the Moora
District and Swan Region Threatened Flora and Communities Recovery Teams. In addition to annual reporting on progress
with listed actions and comparison against the criteria for success and failure, the plan is to be reviewed within five years of
1. Relevant land managers have been notified of the presence and threatened status of Macarthuria keigheryi.
2. A survey conducted by staff from the former Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) located a sixth
population in a ‘Bush Forever’ site.
3. Numerous surveys have been conducted in areas of suitable habitat in the Dandaragan and Welshpool areas by staff
4. A detailed research project on the biology of Macarthuria keigheryi and Conospermum undulatum was conducted by
the Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority (BGPA) in 2005.
5. 164 plants are currently being maintained in cultivation at BGPA.
Ongoing and future recovery actions
6. Staff from DEC’s Moora and Swan Coastal Districts regularly monitor all populations of this species.
7. The Moora District Threatened Flora and Swan Region Threatened Flora and Communities Recovery Teams are
overseeing the implementation of this IRP and will include information on progress in an annual report to DEC's
Corporate Executive and funding bodies.
IRP objective: 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.
increased by ten percent or more over the five year term of the plan.
decreased by ten percent or more over the five year term of the plan.
10. Map habitat critical to survival
Install fencing if required
12. Review this plan and assess the need for further recovery actions
The type specimen of Macarthuria keigheryi was collected from the Cataby area in 1989. Surveys conducted in the
1980's, followed by the 1990-1994 floristic survey of the southern Swan Coastal Plain and the 1992 survey of
remnant vegetation of the eastern side of the Swan Coastal Plain failed to find more populations of the species. A Western
Australian Herbarium botanist then found 1 plant in the Cataby area (Population 1) in 1991 but a subsequent survey in
1996 was unsuccessful in relocating the plant.
During a taxonomic revision of the genus, a 1976 specimen from Kewdale was determined to be Macarthuria keigheryi.
The former Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) discovered the population during the Systems Six reserve
system review in 1995. Populations 4 and 6 were discovered during a survey conducted by staff from the DEP when
surveying 'Bush Forever' sites. Both of these populations and a large Midwest population were discovered in areas
regenerating post-fire, which suggested that Macarthuria keigheryi is fire responsive.
Macarthuria keigheryi was thought to be rare in 1997 due to clearing of its winter wet swamp habitat for urban
development and agricultural use.
Research was conducted on the species for Westralia Airports Corporation by staff from the Botanical Gardens and Parks
present mainly at the base of the stems and on young growth. They are narrowly obovate to elliptic in shape, 2.7 -
11.5 mm long and 0.7 - 3.5 mm broad. The flowers have five sepals that are hairy on the outside. The outer sepals are
green, the inner are partly white and membranous. The five petals are narrow, dying early. There are eight stamens
joined at the base. The style is small, divided into three. The seeds are normally round, black, and shiny.
Macarthuria keigheryi is distinguished by the dense covering of golden hairs on its stems and leaves and the large number
of flowers (up to 25) in the dense headed inflorescence. Flowering occurs from September to December and from
February to March. Two other species of Macarthuria (M. australis and M. apetala) grow with M. keigheryi but neither
have hairy stems (Lepschi 1996).
have not been recorded in two of these populations during recent surveys. One isolated population (Population 1) which
was recorded as having extant plants in 1996 and then rediscovered in 2006 with over 10,000 plants, occurs west of
Dandaragan (Greg Woodman pers. comm.), while the other five are within a 5 km radius at Welshpool and Kewdale,
south-east of Perth. Approximately 10,070 plants are currently known with less than 1% of the total population occurring
within the Swan Coastal Plain. The Perth populations occur on a number of different of land tenures with two (Populations
4 and 6) on land managed by the Department for Planning and Infrastructure (DPI). Long term plans for a road reserve
are a threat to both of these populations.
open patches with low tree canopy cover among heathland and jarrah-Banksia woodland. It grows with Kingia australis,
and Alexgeorgea nitens. At the Cooljarloo population, west of Dandaragan, it grows in Banksia woodland with Banksia
2001; Atkins 2004).
Bushland, Forrestdale (319), Perth Airport and Adjacent Bushland (386) and McDowell St Bushland, Welshpool (424) and,
as such, is warranted some protection under this scheme (Department of Environmental Protection 2000).
1. Cooljarloo, west
Unvested Crown Land
and Empire Oil and
1b. Cooljarloo, west
Commission of Western
Flora and Fauna
4. Queens Park
5a. Perth Airport
Corporation Pty Ltd
5b. Perth Airport
5c. Perth Airport
6. Queens Park