#ThreatenedSpecies of the Week: Eremophila viscida (Varnish Bush)

23The main identified threats to Eremophila viscida include poor recruitment due to inadequate disturbance, weeds, salinity and waterlogging, silting, erosion, inappropriate fire regimes, maintenance activities for roads, tracks, powerlines and firebreaks, grazing and disturbance by stock and feral animals, and chemical drift.

Eremophila viscida is listed as Endangered under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) and Declared Rare Flora under the Wildlife Conservation Act 1950.

 Eremophila viscida is a large, erect shrub 2 to 6 m tall with sticky, shiny, brown, hairless branches and hairless to finely glandular-hairy leaves 5 to 10 cm long by 1 cm wide. The flowers are tubular, about 2 cm long, and are solitary or sometimes in twos. Each flower is on a 1 cm long stalk, which is enlarged beneath the flower. The calyx lobes are 7 mm long, greyish-blue or reddish in colour and are strongly veined. The corolla is white to pale yellow with purple spots. The stamens project beyond the floral tube. The ovary is hairy. Egg-shaped fruits are 5 to 7 mm long, 4 mm wide and are hairy on the upper part.

Eremophila viscida is distinguished from Eremophila lucida ms (Shining Poverty Bush) by its linear to lanceolate leaves, prominently spotted flowers and large greyish-blue or reddish calyx lobes.

Eremophila viscida has a historical range of some 290 km between Latham, Koorda, Carnamah, Ballidu, Pindar and Merredin. It appears to prefer areas that are associated with granite and salt lake systems and plants are particularly frequent in runoff areas, including drainage lines or ephemeral creeks connected to granite outcrops. Preferred habitat is brown, sandy-loam or red brown clay-loam soils, in open woodland in association with Eucalyptus loxophleba and scrub vegetation

Information Source: Government of Australia, Department of Environment and Department of Parks and Wildlife Western Australia.

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