Environmental issues

Pests and weeds

Biodiversity threatened by bitou bush invasion

A key objective of the Bitou Bush and Boneseed Threat Abatement Plan (Bitou TAP) (06115TAPtext.pdf, 886 KB) is identifying biodiversity most at risk of serious decline in NSW because of bitou bush invasion. Identifying this biodiversity involved assessing plant and animal species, plant populations and ecological communities.

Plants at risk

All native plant species, not just those listed as threatened under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995 (TSC Act) or the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) were assessed. Species were assigned a priority of high, medium or low based on a model developed to assess the impact of bitou bush.

The method used to select and prioritise the species is described in Appendix 2 (Appendix2.pdf, 77 KB) of the Bitou TAP. The complete list of plant species identified as the most at risk from bitou bush invasion in NSW is found in Appendix 3 (06115TAPappendices.pdf, 1.3 MB).

High priority species are listed in the table below.

 

 Scientific name (1)

 Common name  Family name
Plectranthus cremnus    Lamiaceae
Zieria prostrata(E)  Headland zieria  Rutaceae

Chamaesyce psammogeton(E)

 Sand spurge  Euphorbiaceae
Senecio spathulatus(E)  Coast groundsel  Asteraceae
Acianthus exiguus    Orchidaceae
Calystegia soldanella    Convolvulaceae
Chamaecrista maritima    Caesalpiniaceae
Sophora tomentosa(E)  Silverbush  Fabaceae
Lepturus repens    Poaceae
Pultenaea maritima(V)  Coast headland pea  Fabaceae
Stackhousia spathulata  Coast stackhousia  Stackhousiaceae
Ischaemum triticeum    Poaceae
Vigna marina  Dune bean  Fabaceae
Gleichenia mendellii    Gleicheniaceae

Actites megalocarpus

 Dune thistle  Asteraceae
Poa poiformis  Coast tussock-grass  Poaceae
Fontainea oraria(E)  Coastal fontainea  Euphorbiaceae
Diuris praecox(V)  Rough doubletail  Orchidaceae
Westringia fruticosa  Coastal rosemary  Lamiaceae

1: E: Species listed as endangered under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995; V: Species listed as endangered under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995.


For more information, see Native plant species at risk from bitou bush invasion: a field guide for NSW (Department of Environment and Climate Change 2008).

Animals at risk

Identifying the animal species at risk fro bitou bush invasion was much more difficult. Only limited information is available on the impact of bitou bush invasion and control on native animals. A list of fauna species suspected of being threatened by bitou bush invasion in NSW can be found in Table 5.2 of the Bitou TAP (06115TAPtext.pdf, 886 KB)

Plant populations at risk

Plant populations listed as threatened under the TSC Act were assessed to identify the impact of bitou bush invasion. The following plant populations were identified:

For more information, see Native plant species at risk from bitou bush invasion: a field guide for NSW (Department of Environment and Climate Change 2008).

Ecological communities at risk

Identifying the ecological communities at risk involved assessing endangered ecological communities (EECs) listed under the TSC Act and/or the EPBC Act, as well as communities not listed under any legislation. EECs were assigned a priority of high, medium or low based on a model developed to assess the impact of bitou bush.

The method used to prioritise the communities is described in Appendix 4 (Appendix4.pdf, 54 KB) of the Bitou TAP  The complete list of ecological communities at risk from bitou bush invasion is found in Appendix 5 (06115TAPappendices.pdf, 1.3 MB).

High priority ecological communities are listed in the table below.

Ecological communities
Status (1)
Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub EEC
TSC E; EPBC E
Littoral Rainforest EEC
TSC E; EPBC CE
Kurnell Dune Forest EEC
TSC E
Coastal Banksia Woodland (Banksia integrifolia)
Themeda (Themeda australis) Grassland on Sea Cliffs and Coastal Headlands EEC
TSC E
Coastal Sand Wallum Heath (Eastern Suburbs Banksia Scrub equivalent communities)
Frontal Dune Vegetation Complex
1:CE = critically endangered; E = endangered; EPBC = Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999; TSC = Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995.

 

For more information, see Native plant species at risk from bitou bush invasion: a field guide for NSW (Department of Environment and Climate Change 2008). 

Page last updated: 19 July 2013