Nature conservation

Threatened species

Giant Dragonfly (Petalura gigantea)

Saving our Species strategy

This species has been assigned to the Landscape species management stream under the Saving our Species (SoS) program.

Justification for allocation to this management stream

This species is distributed across relatively large areas and is subject to threatening processes that generally act at the landscape scale (e.g. habitat loss or degradation) rather than at distinct, defineable locations.

Conservation status

Management objectives

This SoS strategy aims to ensure that the species is secure in the wild in NSW and that its NSW geographic range is extended or maintained and maintain its conservation status under the BC Act.

Species sightings and management sites across NSW

The map below displays the species’ distribution in NSW, based upon the species’ geographic range, habitat distribution or area of occupancy (to as high a resolution as available data allow, using a range of data sources).

Information about the species’ habitat and ecology is available here.

The map may also display one or more management sites where management of important populations is underway. More information is available in the tables below.


The species occurs in the following IBRA (Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation for Australia) regions in NSW:

Australian Alps
New England Tablelands
NSW North Coast
NSW South Western Slopes
South East Corner
South Eastern Highlands
South Eastern Queensland
Sydney Basin

Proportion of the species' distribution on reserve

33% of the species' distribution occurs on reserve (within NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service estate).

Critical actions for this species

The key threats to the viability of landscape-managed species are loss, fragmentation and degradation of habitat, and widespread pervasive factors such as impacts of climate change and disease. Many of these threats are addressed by NSW planning, native vegetation, and biodiversity legislation, policy and programs including the offsets program (BioBanking, NSW Biodiversity Offsets Policy for Major Projects), Biodiversity Certification, management of environmental water and reservation under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.

Threats to this species are outlined here.

The actions listed in the action toolbox are supplementary to NSW legislation, policy and programs and can be used by stakeholders, where applicable to guide management at a site, regional or state scale.

Action toolbox

Action DescriptionScale
Liaise with relevant land managers (e.g. local government) to maintain native vegetation buffers (50 m or greater) around all swamp systems. Implement appropriate water sensitive urban design to reduce impacts of urban runoff on upland swamps and implement best practice stormwater and soil conservation principles and practices (e.g. identify problem stormwater input locations [to swamps], install stormwater basins and maintain (including regular clearing) sediment traps etc).Area
Undertake rehabilitation of and restoration works on swamp habitat if/where required to repair damage such as sedimentation, erosion and weed invasion. In the case of pine wildings in or adjacent to swamps within pine plantation areas, ensure that a minimum 20 m native vegetation buffer is maintained pine wilding free.Site
Monitor impacts of longwall mining (particularly on groundwater levels) using a scale of appropriate units that identify meaningful levels of changes over appropriate time periods using a Before After Control Impact (BACI) design, with appropriate baseline data collected prior to undermining. Undertake a cumulative impact assessment using species habitat models to determine proportion of habitat that has been/will be impacted by mining.Area
Refine understanding of species' distribution, and the distribution of additional potential habitat through targeted surveying of known or predicted suitable habitat across the species' range. Identify swamps likely to have the greatest resilience to climate change impacts in order to prioritise these for protection.State
Research impacts of fire, and the long-term effects of more frequent and/or more intense fires on peat soils, to inform fire management. Revise relevant fire management prescriptions in the Bushfire Environmental Assessment Code guidelines for ecological communities, based upon the outcomes of this research. State
Consult with the Rural Fire Service and/or National Parks and Wildlife Service to ensure that prescribed burning is conducted with minimal impact on swamp habitat, e.g. no vehicles in swamps, maintain buffers around swamps.Area
Liaise with relevant landholders at freehold sites containing this species or its habitat, about the species' significance and sensitivity to disturbance. Negotiate management agreements (preferably in-perpetuity covenants) and provide incentives to promote best practice management if/where appropriate.Site
Liaise with Blue Mountains City Council to ensure that all bores and harvested springs within the Blue Mountains LGA are mapped, licensed and have meters installed to measure water use. Conduct targeted research on the groundwater hydrology of peat swamps and perched aquifers to assess the cumulative impact of water extraction on the species' habitat, to inform future water management. Area
Manage fire trails and unsealed roads adjacent to and in the upstream catchments of wetlands to reduce sedimentation impacts on this species' habitat. Avoid unnecessary disturbance of such track surfaces and where feasible seal unsealed roads (or parts thereof where runoff will flow towards wetlands) where other options are unavailable to prevent further sedimentation of swamps. Implement appropriate sediment controls on water diversions to ensure flows are maintained but sediment loads are low as possible.Site
Ensure a native vegetation buffer (50 m or greater) is maintained around swamps.Area
Rehabilitate and manage access to tracks (including vehicle and pedestrian) that impact on swamp habitat. Take all practical steps to prevent vehicle access to swamps.Site
Undertake community education about choice of pesticide, method of application and compliance with pesticide use regulations (as outlined on labels on bottles) within or adjacent to swamp vegetation, particularly in circumstances where compulsory weed control is mandated under the Noxious Weed Act.Area
Facilitate research at regional and range-wide scales, and dispersal ecology if possible.State

How will this species be managed?

Key management sites for this threatened species are being identified by the NSW Government and other program partners, where feasible, cost-effective and beneficial management actions can be undertaken. Currently, 2 management sites have been identified for this threatened species.

Management sites

Click on column headers to sort
Site nameSite typeStatusLocal government area (LGA)
Newnes Priority management siteActive Lithgow City 
Blue Mountains Priority management siteActive Blue Mountains, Hawkesbury, Lithgow City 

Are you or is someone you know doing conservation work for this species or in this area?

Contact us to tell us about the work. Your input will help OEH evaluate the status of threatened species and provide a broader picture of conservation work across NSW.