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This instrument amends the list of threatened ecological communities under section 181 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 by including in the list in the critically endangered category, Plains mallee box woodlands of the Murray Darling Depression, Riverina and Naracoorte Coastal Plain Bioregions.
Administered by: Agriculture, Water and the Environment
Registered 09 Jun 2021
Tabling HistoryDate
Tabled HR15-Jun-2021
Tabled Senate15-Jun-2021

 

 

Commonwealth of Australia

 

List of Threatened Ecological Communities Amendment (EC150) Instrument 2021

 

 

 

I, SUSSAN LEY, Minister for the Environment, pursuant to paragraph 184(a) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, hereby amend the list referred to in section 181 of that Act by including in the list of threatened ecological communities in the critically endangered category:

 

Plains mallee box woodlands of the Murray Darling Depression, Riverina and Naracoorte Coastal Plain Bioregions

 

as described in the Schedule to this instrument.

 

This instrument commences the day after registration.

 

 

 

Sussan Ley

...................................................................................

Sussan Ley

Minister for the Environment

 

 

 

Dated .........3rd June 2021....................

 


SCHEDULE

 

Plains mallee box woodlands of the Murray Darling Depression, Riverina and Naracoorte Coastal Plain Bioregions

The Plains mallee box woodlands ecological community is the assemblage of plants, animals and other organisms (i.e. all biota) that comprise these mallee woodlands that are found in south-west New South Wales, north-west Victoria, and south-east South Australia. It is a medium to tall open mallee eucalypt woodland with an understorey in which tussock grasses may be prominent in relatively wet years, low chenopod shrubs occur in variable densities, and taller shrubs are typically sparse.

The ecological community occurs within the Murray Darling Depression, Riverina and Naracoorte Coastal Plain bioregions. Within these bioregions, the ecological community typically occurs on near-level plains or occasionally on gently sloping terrain surrounding and within run-on landscape depressions. Soils are variable but are typically duplex, with clay loam or occasionally sandy clay loam topsoil textures mostly of aeolian origin, above deep fine textured clay subsoils.

The open canopy of this community is typically dominated by the box-barked eucalypt species Eucalyptus porosa (black mallee box) or E. behriana (bull mallee, broad-leaved mallee box). However, E. calycogona (square-fruited mallee, gooseberry mallee, red mallee), or E. dumosa (Dumosa mallee) may be dominant in some areas. Small tree and/or shrub layers may be present, but are typically very sparse.

A distinctive low to decumbent chenopod sub-shrub layer can be a key feature in many occurrences. Typical species species include Atriplex stipitata subsp. stipitata (Bitter Saltbush), Chenopodium desertorum (Frosted Goosefoot) including subspecies C. desertorum subsp. microphyllum (Small-leaf Goosefoot), Einadia nutans subsp. nutans (Nodding Saltbush), Enchylaena tomentosa (Ruby Saltbush), Maireana spp. (bluebush), Rhagodia spinescens (Hedge Saltbush), Sclerolaena diacantha (Grey Copperburr) and S. muricata (Tangled Copperburr).

The ground layer may be dominated by tussock grasses, which is most conspicuous after rains, but may be inconspicuous depending on drought conditions, livestock grazing or other ground disturbance. Typical grass species include Austrostipa platychaeta (Flat-awned Spear-grass), A. elegantissima (Feather Spear-grass, Elegant Spear-grass), A. eremophila (Desert Spear-grass), A. nitida (Balcarra Spear-grass), A. scabra (Rough Spear-grass), Rytidosperma caespitosum (Common Wallaby-grass), R. duttonianum (Brown-back Wallaby-grass), Enteropogon acicularis (Curly Windmill Grass) and Paspalidium constrictum (Knottybutt Grass). Triodia spp. (spinifex) are typically absent from the ground layer and never dominant. Non-grass graminoids include Dianella revoluta (Black-anther Flax-lily) and Lomandra effusa (Scented Mat-rush). Common forbs include Arthropodium spp., Bulbine semibarbata, Brachyscome spp., Oxalis perennans (Grassland Wood-sorrel, Native Sorrel), Ptilotus spathulatus (Pussy Tails), Ptilotus spp., Senecio spanomerus, Sida corrugata (Corrugated Sida), Solanum esuriale (Quena, Tomato Bush), Teucrium racemosum (Grey Germander), and Vittadinia spp.

The ecological community includes a variety of fauna species, including many species that are listed as threatened at a national or state level.