#ThreatenedSpecies of the Week! Grevillea bracteosa subsp. howatharra

Grevillea bracteosa subsp. howatharra
Photo courtesy of Department of Parks and Wildlife.

Grevillea bracteosa subsp. howatharra is declared as Rare Flora (DRF) under the WA Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 and is ranked as Critically Endangered in WA. Main threats to this species include competition from invasive weeds, land clearance and grazing from live stock, rabbits and kangaroos.

Grevillea bracteosa subsp. howatharra is an open, non-lignotuberous shrub, up to 2m high, with pink, purple and white flowers. The inflorescence are 2cm wide and moderately dense and the leaves are 8.5 to 10mm long and 4.5 to 5mm wide.

The species is known from five populations north and east of Geraldton and grows in heavy soils, consisting of clay loam with laterite, in open sunny positions. It is commonly referred to as one of Geraldton’s rarest and prettiest plants.

Grevillea bracteosa was first collected by James Drummond in 1884-85 with subsequent collections made from two disjunct areas – near Miling and Geraldton. Distinct forms of the species were found in each area and they were named G.subsp. bracteosa and G.subsp. howatharra.

To improve the extent, condition and connectivity of native vegetation that is habitat for this threatened species, the Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW) are planting over 10 hectares of cleared paddock adjacent to small areas of remnant vegetation.  This will re-establish connectivity of habitat between two small subpopulations of this threatened plant that are currently restricted to very small patches of remnant vegetation.

As part of the Australian Government’s 20 Million Trees Program, DPaW are inviting local community members to help create habitat for G. bracteosa subsp. howatharra. More information about the community planting day can be viewed on NACC’s events calendar here https://nacc.com.au/event/community-planting-day/

For more information about this plant, or if you have seen it, please contact the Department of Parks and Wildlife’s Mid-West District Office on 9964 0901.

 

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