Nature conservation

Threatened species

Coastal Fontainea - profile

Indicative distribution

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The areas shown in pink and/purple are the sub-regions where the species or community is known or predicted to occur. They may not occur thoughout the sub-region but may be restricted to certain areas. ( click here to see geographic restrictions). The information presented in this map is only indicative and may contain errors and omissions.
Scientific name: Fontainea oraria
Conservation status in NSW: Critically Endangered
Commonwealth status: Endangered
Profile last updated: 26 Feb 2019


Coastal Fontainea is a large shrub or small tree growing 8 - 10 m tall, sometimes with separate stems from the base. Its elliptical leaves are 8 – 12 cm long and are dark green, smooth and shiny above and paler and slightly glossy below. The leaf-stalk exudes a watery sap when broken. The flowers are small and white. Female flowers are borne in groups of two or three while the male flowers are borne in small clusters. The fruit is red and fleshy and slightly downy, and measures 2 – 2.4 cm in diameter.


Coastal Fontainea is extremely rare, restricted to a small number of trees at Lennox Head in north-east NSW.

Habitat and ecology

  • Coastal Fontainea occurs in remnant regrowth littoral rainforest on highly fertile red-brown krasnozem soils derived from the basalt. These remnants occur on stony slopes within 1km of the sea and at about 50 m above sea level.
  • Flowering of the Coastal Fontainea occurs from spring to mid-summer although flowers have been observed during other seasons.
  • The Coastal Fontainea appears to have variable periods of fruiting, with ripe fruit being observed mainly in autumn.
  • The Coastal Fontainea is considered to be an obligate seed regenerator, which means it relies on seed production and seedling establishment for continued persistence.

Regional distribution and habitat

Click on a region below to view detailed distribution, habitat and vegetation information.


Recovery strategies

Activities to assist this species

Information sources

IBRA Bioregion IBRA Subregion Known or predicted Geographic restrictions region
OceanTweed-Moreton Known None
South Eastern QueenslandClarence Lowlands Known North of Ballina