SHY FEATHERFLOWER (Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis) INTERIM RECOVERY PLAN 2010-2015
Department of Environment and Conservation
FOREWORD Recovery plans (RPs) and 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.
Plans 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 are conserved through the preparation and implementation of plans 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 the Minister.
This plan will operate from December 2010 to November 2015 but will remain in force until withdrawn or replaced. It is intended that, if the taxon is still ranked as Vulnerable in WA under IUCN (2001) criteria the plan will be reviewed after five years and the need for further recovery actions assessed.
This plan was approved by the Director of Nature Conservation on 2 December 2010. The provision of funds identified in this plan is dependent on budgetary and other constraints affecting DEC, as well as the need to address other priorities. Information in this plan was accurate at December 2010.
Note: although the plan was written and endorsed as an IRP in Western Australia it is treated as a Plan under the EPBC Act.
PLAN PREPARATION This plan was prepared by Robyn Luu1 and Andrew Brown2.
2 Threatened Flora Coordinator, DEC Species and Communities Branch, Locked Bag 104, Bentley Delivery Centre, WA 6983.
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS The following people provided assistance and advice in the preparation of this IRP:
Kristine Brooks Flora Conservation Officer, DEC Great Southern District
Anne Cochrane Senior Research Scientist, Threatened Flora Seed Centre, DEC Science Division
Colin Crane Technical Officer, DEC Science Division
Thanks also to the staff of the W.A. Herbarium for providing access to Herbarium databases and specimen information, and DEC's Species and Communities Branch for assistance.
Cover photograph by Bethea Loudon.
CITATION This Recovery plan should be cited as:
Department of Environment and Conservation (2010) Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis Interim Recovery Plan 2010-2015. Interim Recovery Plan No. 304. Department of Environment and Conservation, Western Australia.
Recovery Teams: Swan Region Threatened Flora and Communities Recovery Team (SRTFCRT); Great Southern District Threatened Flora Recovery Team (GSDTFRT)
Illustrations and/or further information: Brown, A., Thomson-Dans, C. and Marchant, N. (Eds). (1998) Western Australia’s Threatened Flora. Department of Conservation and Land Management, Western Australia; George, A.S. (1991) New taxa, combinations and typifications in Verticordia (Myrtaceae: Chamelaucieae). Nuytsia 7 (3): 231–394; George, A.S. (2002) Verticordia: the turner of hearts. University of Western Australia Press, Crawley; Western Australian Herbarium (1998−) FloraBase − The Western Australian Flora. Department of Environment and Conservation. http://florabase.dec.wa.gov.au/.
Current status: Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis was declared as Rare Flora under the Western Australian Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 in September 1987 and is currently ranked Vulnerable in Western Australia against World Conservation Union (IUCN 2001) criteria. The subspecies is listed under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act 1999) as Endangered. The main threats to the subspecies are insecure land tenure, road maintenance activities, weed invasion, poor recruitment, inappropriate fire regimes, grazing, trampling, feral pigs, Phytophthora dieback, powerline maintenance, salinity, farming activities and gravel extraction.
Description:Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis is a small bushy shrub, 30–70 cm tall and 20–70 cm wide. It has pale-pink or occasionally white flowers on short peduncles. Flowers are in small rounded groups at the tips of branches. The petals are markedly narrowed towards the tip with margins finely fringed. The staminodes are fringed across their broad apex, and a single hair in the centre is much longer than the others (George 2002).
Habitat requirements: Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis is widely distributed from southeast of Armadale to Brookton and Kojonup. It grows in low-lying shallow grey sand and yellowish-white sandy loam over gravel, sometimes with clay, in heath and scrubland and open wandoo woodland (George 2002).
Habitat critical to the survival of the species, and important populations: It is considered that the habitat for populations 4, 5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 12, 14 and 16 is critical to the survival of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis and that these populations are important populations. Habitat critical to the survival of V. fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis includes the area of occupancy of these populations, areas of similar habitat surrounding these populations (these providing potential habitat for population expansion and for pollinators), additional occurrences of similar habitat that may contain undiscovered populations of the subspecies or be suitable for future translocations, and the local catchment of these populations for the surface and/or groundwater that maintains the habitat of the subspecies.
Benefits to other species or ecological communities: Recovery actions implemented to improve the quality or security of the habitat of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis will also improve the status of associated native vegetation including four Declared Rare Flora, 16 Priority flora and one Priority Ecological Community.
International obligations: This plan is fully consistent with the aims and recommendations of the Convention on Biological Diversity, ratified by Australia in June 1993, and will assist in implementing Australia’s responsibilities under that Convention. The subspecies is listed under Appendix II in the United Nations Environment Program World Conservation Monitoring Centre (UNEP-WCMC) Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), however this plan does not affect Australia’s obligations under any other international agreements.
Indigenous Consultation: A search of the Department of Indigenous Affairs Aboriginal Heritage Sites Register has identified two sites of Aboriginal significance within Populations 3 and 7. These sites are listed as Measles Bridge Camp (#19933) a historical camp (open, no restrictions) and Nalya/Brookton (#5718) man-made structure (open, no restrictions).
Social and economic impacts: As Subpopulation 5b occurs on private property and Population 13 occurs on land where gravel is extracted, the protection of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis may affect future development on these sites.
Affected interests: The protection of the subspecies may impact on maintenance operations conducted by local Shires, Western Power, Main Roads WA, Water Corporation and private landholders.
Evaluation of the Plan’s Performance: The DEC in conjunction with the Swan Region Threatened Flora and Communities Recovery Team (SRTFCRT) and Great Southern District Threatened Flora Recovery Team (GSDTFRT) will evaluate the performance of the plan. In addition to annual reporting on progress and evaluation against the criteria for success and failure, the plan will be reviewed following five years of implementation.
Existing Recovery Actions: The following recovery actions have been or are currently being implemented and have been considered in the preparation of this plan:
All relevant stakeholders have been made aware of the existence of this subspecies and its locations.
Declared Rare Flora (DRF) markers have been installed at Populations 1, 2, 4, 5a, 5b, 6 and 12.
Dashboard stickers and posters describing the significance of DRF markers have been produced and distributed.
In July 1998, 150 plants of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis were planted into a proposed Timber Reserve near Beaufort, in accordance with an approved Translocation Proposal.
Weed control trials were conducted by DEC Katanning District at Population 1 of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis following an uncontrolled fire in 1990.
In 1997, surveys were conducted for new populations of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis by Robert Buehrig.
In 2009, a new population of Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis was found south east of Armadale by volunteers Fred and Jean Hort.
A research study on six Acacia and five Verticordia DRF taxa was undertaken by DEC Science Division.
A total of 31,535 Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis seeds collected between 1996 and 2004 are stored in DEC’s Threatened Flora Seed Centre at –18C and 4C.
Cutting material from Verticordia fimbrilepis subsp. fimbrilepis was collected from Population 3 in 1994, 1997, 1998, 1999 and 2000 and forwarded to BGPA for propagation.
Staff from DEC’s Perth Hills and Great Southern Districts regularly monitor populations.
The SRTFCRT and GSDTFRT are overseeing the implementation of this plan and will include information on progress in their annual report to DEC’s Corporate Executive and funding bodies.
Recovery Plan Objective: The objective of this recovery plan is to abate identified threats and maintain or enhance in situ populations to ensure the long-term preservation of the subspecies in the wild.