Biodiversity

Species Profile and Threats Database


For information to assist proponents in referral, environmental assessments and compliance issues, refer to the Policy Statements and Guidelines (where available), the Conservation Advice (where available) or the Listing Advice (where available).
 
In addition, proponents and land managers should refer to the Recovery Plan (where available) or the Conservation Advice (where available) for recovery, mitigation and conservation information.

EPBC Act Listing Status Listed as Endangered
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Acacia vassalii (Vassal's Wattle) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008dw) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, included on the Commenced List (1/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Declaration under s178, s181, and s183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 - List of threatened species, List of threatened ecological communities and List of threatening processes (Commonwealth of Australia, 2000) [Legislative Instrument].
 
State Government
    Documents and Websites
WA:Threatened flora of the Western Central Wheatbelt (Collins, J., 2009) [State Species Management Plan].
WA:Western Australian Wildlife Management Program No. 28. Declared Rare and Poorly Known Flora in the Moora District (Patrick, S.J. & A.P. Brown, 2001) [State Species Management Plan].
State Listing Status
WA: Listed as Critically Endangered (Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 (Western Australia): September 2013 list)
Scientific name Acacia vassalii [6144]
Family Fabaceae:Fabales:Magnoliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author Maslin
Infraspecies author  
Reference Nuytsia 2: 215, fig. 5 (7 Feb. 1978).
Distribution map Species Distribution Map

This is an indicative distribution map of the present distribution of the species based on best available knowledge. See map caveat for more information.

Illustrations Google Images

Vassal's Wattle is a spreading semi-prostrate shrub (Orchard & Wilson 2001), from 0.3 to 1 m high (Paczkowska & Chapman 2000; Brown et al. 1998; Hopper et al. 1990) with minute globular yellow flower heads (Orchard & Wilson 2001). In open areas it forms a low dense cushion up to 1 m diameter, but is more open and upright when shaded by other plants (Brown et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001).

This species is restricted to near the Wongan Hills and Watheroo, SW WA (Orchard & Wilson 2001).

The species was described in 1978 from three collections, the earliest of which was made from Wongan Hills in 1935, and the other two from unknown localities. It was presumed extinct by Leigh et al. (1984), but several populations were later found and it is now known from four populations in three localities; the Wongan Hills area, E of Moora, and NE of Watheroo (Brown et al. 1998; Stack et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001). It occurs over a range of about 85 km (Brown et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001). At least one further population has been found since, NE of existing populations, in a roadside situation (WATSNU 1998). Phillimore & English (2000) reported that an extensive survey has located new populations close to the known populations. Therefore there are currently at least five known extant populations.

A summary of population details by Patrick & Brown (2001):

Population No.LocationDistrictLand TenureLast Survey -
No. of Plants
Comment
1.Wongan HillsMerredineducation reserve (land owned by Education Department)-declined in recent years from eight plants to one
2.E of MooraMoorashire road reserve & railway reserve30.7.1991 -
about 100
mainly good - some disturbance and weeds
3.SE of Moora (2.5 km S of Population 2)Moorashire road reserve11.7.1986 -
10
a very narrow road reserve with heavy weed infestation - population has not been relocated despite several searches
4.NE of WatherooMoorashire road verge & 'Water Reserve'27.10.1992 -
unknown
good condition - further surveying required

This species grows in yellow or brown sands and sandy loams with gravel, over laterite (Brown et al. 1998; Paczkowska & Chapman 2000; Patrick & Brown 2001).

The species grows in low scrub and heath (Brown et al. 1998). Associated species include Allocasuarina campestris, Acacia drummondiana, Dryandra frazeri, D. carlinoides and Hakea and Drosera species. The northern population grows with Actinostrobus arenarius, Ecdeiocolea monostachya and Grevillea integrifolia subsp. biformis (Brown et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001).

Plants growing along the graded road edge and in open areas appear to be larger and healthier than shaded specimens, which are often diffuse, upright and partly dead (Brown et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001).

Flowers are borne June-Aug. (Brown et al. 1998).

The species is probably a disturbance opportunist (Patrick & Brown 2001). The majority of the larger population has been regularly burnt, indicating that the species requires fire or other disturbance to promote germination (Brown et al. 1998; Patrick & Brown 2001).

The following table lists known and perceived threats to this species. Threats are based on the International Union for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources (IUCN) threat classification version 1.1.

Threat Class Threatening Species References
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Agriculture and Aquaculture:Fertiliser application Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Climate Change and Severe Weather:Habitat Shifting and Alteration:Habitat loss, modification and/or degradation Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Restricted geographical distribution (area of occupancy and extent of occurrence) Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Acacia vassalii (Vassal's Wattle) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008dw) [Conservation Advice].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Habitat disturbance from recreational vehicle use Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Soil disturbance and/or trampling due to bushwalking Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation Oryctolagus cuniculus (Rabbit, European Rabbit) Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation by weeds Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:unspecified Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Problematic Native Species:Competition, predation and/or habitat degradation by insects Acacia vassalii in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006at) [Internet].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Problematic Native Species:Invasion and competition from native plant species Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate prescribed regimes and/or vegetation management to control fire regimes Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Pollution:Agricultural Effluents:Herbicide application Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Pollution:Garbage and Solid Waste:Dumping of household and industrial waste Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Protected status:Protected status:Lack of secure conservation land tenure Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Acacia vassalii (Vassal's Wattle) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008dw) [Conservation Advice].
Residential and Commercial Development:Commercial and Industrial Areas:Recreational, commercial and industrial development Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Residential and Commercial Development:Housing and Urban Areas:Habitat loss, modification and fragmentation due to urban development Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Low numbers of individuals Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Acacia vassalii (Vassal's Wattle) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008dw) [Conservation Advice].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Poor recruitment (regeneration) and declining population numbers Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Transportation and Service Corridors:Roads and Railroads:Development and/or maintenance of roads Recovery Plan for Vassal's Wattle Acacia vassalii (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010k) [Recovery Plan].
Transportation and Service Corridors:Transportation and Service Corridors:Road and rail maintenance works Acacia vassalii in Species Profile and Threats (SPRAT) database (Department of the Environment and Heritage (DEH), 2006at) [Internet].
Uncategorised:Uncategorised:threats not specified Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Acacia vassalii (Vassal's Wattle) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee, 2008dw) [Conservation Advice].

Briggs, J.D. & J.H. Leigh (1996). Rare or Threatened Australian Plants - Revised Edition. Collingwood: CSIRO Publishing.

Brown, A., C. Thomson-Dans & N. Marchant, eds. (1998). Western Australia's Threatened Flora. Como, Western Australia: Department of Conservation and Land Management.

Hopper, S.D., S. van Leeuwen, A.P. Brown & S.J. Patrick (1990). Western Australia's Endangered Flora and other plants under consideration for declaration. Perth, Western Australia: Department of Consrvation and Land Management.

Leigh, J., R. Boden & J. Briggs (1984). Extinct and Endangered Plants of Australia. Melbourne, Victoria: Macmillan.

Meredith, L.D. & M.M. Richardson (1990). Rare or Threatened Australian Plant Species in Cultivation in Australia. Report Series No. 15. Page(s) 1-114. Canberra: Australian National Parks and Wildlife Service.

Orchard, A.E. & A.J.G. Wilson (eds) (2001). Flora of Australia, Volume 11A, Mimosaceae, Acacia Part 1.

Paczkowska, G. & A.R. Chapman (2000). The Western Australian Flora, A Descriptive Catalogue. The Wildflower Society of Western Australia (Inc.), the Western Australian Herbarium, Department of Conservation and Land Management and the Botanic Gardens & Parks Authority.

Patrick, S.J. & A.P. Brown (2001). Western Australian Wildlife Management Program No. 28. Declared Rare and Poorly Known Flora in the Moora District. [Online]. Perth, Western Australia: Department of Conservation and Land Management. Available from: http://www.dpaw.wa.gov.au/plants-and-animals/threatened-species-and-communities/threatened-plants.

Phillimore, R. & V. English (2000). Moora District Threatened Flora Management Plan. Natural Heritage Trust, WA CALM. Moora, WA CALM.

Stack, G, Phillimore, R & Evans, R (1998). Flora Update. WATSNU. 5(2):8-9. Threatened Species and Communities Unit, WA CALM. Threatened Species and Communities Unit, WA CALM.

WATSNU (1998). Flora Update. WATSNU. 5(1):4. Threatened Species and Communities Unit, WA CALM. Threatened Species and Communities Unit, WA CALM.

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This database is designed to provide statutory, biological and ecological information on species and ecological communities, migratory species, marine species, and species and species products subject to international trade and commercial use protected under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (the EPBC Act). It has been compiled from a range of sources including listing advice, recovery plans, published literature and individual experts. While reasonable efforts have been made to ensure the accuracy of the information, no guarantee is given, nor responsibility taken, by the Commonwealth for its accuracy, currency or completeness. The Commonwealth does not accept any responsibility for any loss or damage that may be occasioned directly or indirectly through the use of, or reliance on, the information contained in this database. The information contained in this database does not necessarily represent the views of the Commonwealth. This database is not intended to be a complete source of information on the matters it deals with. Individuals and organisations should consider all the available information, including that available from other sources, in deciding whether there is a need to make a referral or apply for a permit or exemption under the EPBC Act.

Citation: Department of the Environment (2014). Acacia vassalii in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Fri, 3 Oct 2014 03:11:20 +1000.