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 Critically Endangered as Caladenia cremna
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
 
Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cd) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, the extremely low number of mature individuals and the species' very restricted geographic distribution indicate that it can be better managed with a recovery plan in place (09/02/2010).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans
Policy Statements and Guidelines Draft survey guidelines for Australia's threatened orchids (Department of the Environment, 2013b) [Admin Guideline].
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Inclusion of species in the list of threatened species under section 178 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (91) (09/02/2010) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2010k) [Legislative Instrument] as Caladenia cremna.
 
State Listing Status
VIC: Listed as Threatened (Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 (Victoria): February 2014 list) as Caladenia cremna
Scientific name Caladenia cremna [82403]
Family Orchidaceae:Orchidales:Liliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author (D.L.Jones) G.N.Backh.
Infraspecies author  
Reference Backhouse, G.N. (2007) The Victorian Naturalist 124: 124
Other names Arachnorchis cremna [81968]
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

Scientific name: Caladenia cremna

Common name: Don's Spider Orchid

Other common name: Whitfield Spider-orchid

The species is conventionally accepted as Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (D.L.Jones) G.N.Backh. (CHAH 2007).

The species was previously described and published as Arachnorchis cremna (Jones 2006a).

Don's Spider Orchid is a hairy, terrestrial orchid which is found growing singly or in small loose groups. The leaf is 8–10 cm long and 0.6 cm wide, dull green with purple blotches at the base. The flower is 4–5 cm in diameter, pale yellow with some fine reddish striae. The tepaline caudae is dark red and the labellum base is pale yellow (Jones 2006a). The distinguishing features of this orchid are its relatively small yellow flowers with reddish striae, stiffly held lateral sepals with tiny dark red osmophores and a few short serrate teeth on the mid-section of the labellum margins (TSSC 2009cc).

Don's Spider Orchid is endemic to Victoria and is known only from one small population consisting of approximately 18 plants in 2008. It occurs in the Black Range State Forest in north-east Victoria, approximately 60 km south of Wangaratta (TSSC 2009cc).

The species occurs in the North East Victoria Natural Resource Management Region and the Victorian Midlands 2 Interim Biogeographic Regionalisation of Australia bioregion (TSSC 2009cc).

In 2006, the extent of occurrence and the area of occupancy of Don's Spider Orchid were estimated to be 400 m² (TSSC 2009cc).

Don's Spider Orchid is known from one population of approximately 18 plants, of which, 16 were mature specimens in 2008 (Branwhite 2009, pers. comm., cited in TSSC 2009cc).

The total number of plants in 2006 was estimated to be 40. In spring 2008, 18 plants were observed. The reason for the recent decline is suspected to be due to natural variability associated with drought. These surveys have shown that the species has experienced a reduction in numbers of 55% over two years (TSSC 2009cc).

The generation length for Don's Spider Orchid is not known, however, the likely age of first flowering is approximately five years from seed germination (TSSC 2009cc).

Don's Spider Orchid occurs in Heathy Dry Forest, dominated by Red Stringybark (Eucalyptus macrorhyncha) and Long leaved Box (Eucalyptus goniocalyx) with an understorey dominated by Red Anther Wallaby Grass (Joycea pallida). It occurs on a northerly aspect at approximately 510 m altitude (TSSC 2009cc).

Most species of Spider Orchids are pollinated by a single specific species of thynnid wasp with which they have a species-specific relationship, however, the specific wasp pollinator for the species is unknown (Bishop 1996; Jones 2006). If the number of wasps declined for any reason this may affect the species' survival (TSSC 2009cc).

The main identified threat to Don's Spider Orchid is road maintenance. Potential threats include weed invasion, quarrying, illegal collection, trampling, loss of specific wasp pollinator and inappropriate fire regimes.

Road Maintenance
The key threat to Don's Spider Orchid is the species' proximity to a road. The entire known population of the species occurs immediately on the high side of a road cutting. It is therefore likely that the population was adversely impacted when the road was prepared and will be further impacted by future road maintenance. The population occurs on a narrow section of the road, so the likelihood of future road widening is high. Dust generated by roadwork and traffic using the road has the potential to partially smother plant leaves, compromising photosynthesis and reproductive processes (TSSC 2009cc).

Potential threats
The main potential threat to Don's Spider Orchid is weed invasion, which is highly likely given the species' close proximity to the roadside. Additional potential threats include quarrying, illegal collection, trampling by orchid enthusiasts, the loss of the specific wasp pollinator and inappropriate fire regimes. Illegal collection is not currently known to affect the species; however, this is a potential threat given the ease of accessibility and the small number of plants known to occur. In addition, the potential threat from unintentional trampling by orchid enthusiasts may have a significant impact on this small population, particularly given the fragile nature of the steep cutting. The species' response to fire is unknown, however, inappropriate intervals between fires may affect recruitment. Additionally, as Don's Spider Orchid only occurs in one location, one intense fire may potentially eliminate the species (TSSC 2009cc).

Minister's Reasons for Recovery Plan Decision
The species warrants a recovery plan as the extremely low number of mature individuals and the species┐ very restricted geographic distribution indicate that it can be better managed with a recovery plan in place.

The Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (TSSC 2009cd) lists the following research priorities:

  • Design and implement a monitoring program or, if appropriate, support and enhance existing programs.
  • Undertake seed germination and/or vegetative propagation trials to determine the requirements for successful establishment, including mycorrhizal association trials.
  • Investigate and confirm the requirements for successful pollination, including identification of the specific wasp pollinator.
  • Investigate the potential and efficacy of DNA-based, or other approaches for the identification of individual plants and/or populations to provide a means for detecting and prosecuting illegal collection from the wild (see for example Palsboll et al., 2006).

In addition, the Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (TSSC 2009cd) lists the following priority actions:

  • Ensure quarrying, road widening and maintenance activities (or other infrastructure or development activities) involving substrate or vegetation disturbance in areas where Don's Spider Orchid occurs does not adversely impact on known population.
  • Monitor the progress of recovery, including the effectiveness of management actions and the need to adapt them if necessary.
  • Undertake road improvements to minimise dust.
  • Identify and remove weeds in the local area, which could become a threat to Don's Spider Orchid, using appropriate methods.
  • Ensure chemicals or other mechanisms used to eradicate weeds do not have a significant adverse impact on Don's Spider Orchid.
  • Manage the potential threat of trampling by people on the fragile site.
  • Implement an appropriate fire management regime.
  • Where appropriate provide maps of known occurrences to local and state Rural Fire Services and seek inclusion of mitigative measures in bush fire risk management plans, risk register and/or operation maps.
  • Maintain liaison with Parks Victoria about management of land on which the population occurs.
  • Undertake appropriate seed and mycorrhizal fungi collection and storage.
  • Investigate options for establishing additional populations in-situ, or ex-situ.

The Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (TSSC 2009cd) provides a brief biological overview and management recommendations.

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
Biological Resource Use:Gathering Terrestrial Plants:Illegal collection Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Energy Production and Mining:Mining and Quarrying:Habitat modification through open cut mining/quarrying activities Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Human Intrusions and Disturbance:Recreational Activities:Soil disturbance and/or trampling due to bushwalking Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation by weeds Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Pollution:Pollution:Pollution due to oil spills and other chemical pollutants Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].
Transportation and Service Corridors:Roads and Railroads:Development and/or maintenance of roads Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009cc) [Listing Advice].

Bishop, A. (1996). Field Guide to Orchids of New South Wales and Victoria. Sydney, NSW: University of New South Wales Press.

Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (CHAH) (2007). Australian Plant Census. [Online]. Australian National Herbarium, Australian National Botanic Gardens and Australian Biological Resources Study . Available from: http://www.anbg.gov.au/chah/apc/.

Jones, D. (2006a). Miscellaneous new species of Australian Orchidaceae. Australian Orchid Research. 5:53-54.

Jones, D.L. (2006). A complete guide to Native Orchids of Australia, including the island Territories. Sydney, NSW: New Holland Publishers (Australia) Pty Ltd.

Palsboll, P.J., M. Berube, H.J. Skaug & C. Raymakers (2006). DNA registers of legally obtained wildlife and derived products as means to identify illegal takes. Conservation Biology. 20:1284-1293.

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2009cc). Commonwealth Listing Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid). [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/species/pubs/82403-listing-advice.pdf.

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2009cd). Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Caladenia cremna (Don's Spider Orchid). [Online]. Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Canberra, ACT: Department of the Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/species/pubs/82403-conservation-advice.pdf.

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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). Caladenia cremna in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Mon, 28 Jul 2014 22:20:59 +1000.