Alpine Bogs and Fens

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Estimated percentage landcover for vegetation class


Wetlands comprising either dense to open patches of sclerophyllous shrubs up to 1 m tall (bogs), or more open and shorter communities of herbs and sedges (fens). The bogs often have conspicuous hummocks of moss, but this is less often so in the fens.




Baeckea gunniana (alpine baeckea), Epacris glacialis, Grevillea australis (alpine grevillea), Olearia algida (alpine daisy-bush), Oxylobium ellipticum (common shaggy pea), Richea continentis (candle heath).


Aciphylla simplicifolia (mountain aciphylla), Asperula gunnii (mountain woodruff), Astelia alpina var. novae-hollandiae (pineapple grass), Celmisia sp. B (silver snow daisy), Chionogentias muelleriana, Craspedia lamicola, Euchiton fordianus, Gonocarpus micranthus subsp. micranthus (creeping raspwort), Microseris lanceolata, Ranunculus gunnianus (Gunns alpine buttercup), Scleranthus biflorus, Senecio lautus subsp. alpinus (variable groundsel), Baloskion australe, Carex gaudichaudiana, Carpha alpina (small flower-rush), Deschampsia caespitosa (tufted hairgrass), Empodisma minus (spreading rope-rush), Isolepis subtilissima, Luzula australasica subsp. dura, Oreobolis distichus (fan tuft-rush), Poa costiniana and the moss, Sphagnum cristatum.


Boggy soils in hollows and drainage lines above 1500 m elevation. The bog soils are generally more acidic and have less phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium than those of the fens, although the two types of wetland are often juxtaposed.


Restricted to Kosciuszko plateau and north to the Brindabella range. Also in the Victorian alps.


Species composition and structure vary with soil chemistry and aeration. Acid bogs support shrub dominants with Sphagnum hummocks, while permanently wet fens are dominated by sedges. Grades locally into Alpine Herbfields with improving soil drainage and shares floristic affinities with Montane Bogs and Fens.


Wimbush & Costin (1973); Thomas et al. (2000)

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See a list of species, populations and ecological communities associated with the Alpine Bogs and Fens vegetation class.