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 Eremophila koobabbiensis
Listing and Conservation Advices Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
 
Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bk) [Conservation Advice].
 
Recovery Plan Decision Recovery Plan required, the species is currently subject to ongoing threats and needs active management, and this can be better achieved with a recovery plan in place (17/11/2009).
 
Adopted/Made Recovery Plans Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010g) [Recovery Plan] as Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540).
 
Federal Register of
    Legislative Instruments
Amendment to the list of threatened species under section 178 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (86) (17/11/2009) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2009f) [Legislative Instrument] as Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540).
 
Amendment to the list of threatened species under section 178, 181 and 183 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth) (160) (Commonwealth of Australia, 2014h) [Legislative Instrument] as Eremophila koobabbiensis.
 
State Listing Status
WA: Listed as Critically Endangered (Wildlife Conservation Act 1950 (Western Australia): September 2013 list) as Eremophila koobabbiensis ms
Scientific name Eremophila koobabbiensis [86684]
Family Scrophulariaceae:Scrophulariales:Magnoliopsida:Magnoliophyta:Plantae
Species author Chinnock
Infraspecies author  
Reference Chinnock, R.J. & Doley, A.B., (2011) Eremophila koobabbiensis (Scrophulariaceae), a new, rare species from the wheatbelt of Western Australia. Nuytsia 21(4): 158-162, Figs 1, 2 [tax. nov.]
Other names Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) [82691]
Eremophila koobabbiensis ms [82692]
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

The species has been described as Eremophila koobabbiensis, but has yet to be published. Until the species has been formally published, the phrase name Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) is the currently accepted name (CHAH 2007). The Western Australian Department of Environment and Conservation has advised that the accepted common name for the species is Koobabbie Poverty Bush (WA DEC 2007).

The Koobabbie Poverty Bush is an erect shrub that can grow to 1.5 m in height. The species has small lobed leaves 4–6 mm long by 1.5–2 mm wide and small dark purple flowers (WA DEC 2007). The species flowers all year round, but most prominently between October and November (TSSC 2009bj).

The Koobabbie Poverty Bush is endemic to Western Australia, and is known from three subpopulations, on private property, near the town of Coorow, which is approximately 245 km north of Perth (WA DEC 2008). The species is located within the Northern Agricultural Natural Resource Management Region (TSSC 2009bj).

The first collection of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush was made from an area of remnant bushland on private property near the township of Coorow in 2000. Following searches on other parts of the property, and in similar habitat in surrounding areas, a second subpopulation was discovered on the same property in 2007 (TSSC 2009bj).

In August 2008, a third (translocated) subpopulation was established on the property. This third subpopulation consisted of 74 seedlings (WA DEC 2008).

The Koobabbie Poverty Bush is considered to have a very restricted geographic distribution (TSSC 2009bj), as the extent of occurrence of the species is estimated to be less than 1 km² (WA DEC 2008). The species' area of occupancy is unknown, but it would be less than the extent of occurrence (WA DEC 2008).

The geographic distribution of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush is fragmented into three very small populations occurring within patches of remnant vegetation surrounded by cleared areas. This lack of suitable habitat surrounding the species' known area of occupancy limits the geographic distribution of the species (TSSC 2009bj).

The estimated total number of mature individuals is four plants (WA DEC 2008). There has been a recent increase in the number of seedlings as a result of translocation, however it is not certain that these 74 seedlings will survive to maturity and reproduce (TSSC 2009bj).

The Koobabbie Poverty Bush is known from three subpopulations within a small area of degraded remnant vegetation surrounded by cleared farmland (WA CALM 2006).

The Koobabbie Poverty Bush grows on flat brown loamy soil in woodland dominated by Salmon Gum (Eucalyptus salmonophloia), Gimlet (Eucalyptus salubris) and York Gum (Eucalyptus loxophleba). Understory species associated with the Koobabbie Poverty Bush include Eremophila sargentii, Acacia hemiteles and Mairrana brevifolia (WA DEC n.d.).

Little is known about the reproductive requirements of the species. The species' response to fire is unknown but it is thought that the species may require occasional fire to induce germination of soil stored seed (WA CALM 2006).

The areas where the Koobabbie Poverty Bush grows had been grazed since 1906, with plants germinating following fencing of the remnant in 1989. For this reason it is thought that the seed of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush can persist in the soil for long periods of time (WA DEC n.d.).

The species is very distinctive and easily identified amongst its associated vegetation (TSSC 2009bj).

The species is related to Pinnate-leaved Eremophila (E. pinnatifida) but is distinguished from it by its smaller flowers and smaller, less prominently lobed leaves (WA DEC 2007d).

Current threats to the Koobabbie Poverty Bush include competition from weeds and inappropriate fire regimes, while past threats were land clearing and grazing.

Weeds
The main threat to the species is competition from weeds. Weeds can compete with the Koobabbie Poverty Bush, particularly seedlings, for resources. Weeds suppress early plant growth by competing for soil moisture, nutrients and light. They also increase the fire hazard due to the easy ignition of high fuel loads, which are produced annually by many weed species (TSSC 2009bj).

Fire regime
Inappropriate fire regimes may affect the long term viability of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush. It is not known what the fire response of the species is, however frequent fire would most likely destroy subpopulations if it occurs before regenerating, or juvenile plants have reached maturity, produced seed and replenished the soil seed bank (TSSC 2009bj).

Land clearing
A past threat to the Koobabbie Poverty Bush was land clearing. The clearing of land for agriculture reduced the amount of suitable habitat for this species (TSSC 2009bj).

Grazing
Stock grazing and trampling was also a past threat to the Koobabbie Poverty Bush. It is likely that the species was grazed by stock until the area was fenced in 1989. Prior to fencing, stock would have been able to move through the site and graze or trample on the species. Grazing would also have contributed to the degradation of the habitat, and the introduction of weeds (TSSC 2009bj).

Minister's Reasons for Recovery Plan decision
There should be a recovery plan for this species. The species is currently subject to ongoing threats and needs active management, and this can be better achieved with a recovery plan in place (17/11/2009).

The Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (TSSC 2009bk) outlines the following research priorities:

  • Design and implement a monitoring program for the species.
  • More precisely assess ecological requirements and demographic information, including:
    • the species' response to disturbance (e.g. fire)
    • Develop and implement disturbance trials. Conduct research into the effectiveness of fire and mechanical disturbance in stimulating the germination of soil stored seed of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush. The results of the trials should be monitored regularly, and if successful, further trials undertaken
    • the pollination biology of the species and the identification of pollinators
    • seed viability
    • conditions necessary for germination
    • longevity of plants and time taken to reach maturity.
  • Undertake survey work in suitable habitat and potential habitat (i.e. open Salmon Gum and Gimlet woodland in flat, loamy, brown soil) to locate any additional subpopulations of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush. Surveys should ideally be undertaken during the species' main flowering period (October and November), and include surveys of areas after known disturbance events.
  • Undertake seed germination and/or vegetative propagation trials to determine the requirement for successful establishment.

In addition, the Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (TSSC 2009bk) outlines the following priority actions:

  • Monitor known populations to identify key threats.
  • Monitor habitat degradation, population stability (expansion or decline), pollination activity, seed production, predation, recruitment and longevity.
  • Ensure chemicals or other mechanisms used to eradicate weeds do not have a significant adverse impact on the species (e.g. from herbicide drift/application).
  • Monitor the progress of recovery, including the effectiveness of management actions and the need to adapt them if necessary.
  • Investigate formal conservation arrangements such as the use of covenants, conservation agreements or inclusion in reserve tenure.
  • Identify and remove weeds in the local area, which could become a threat to the Koobabbie Poverty Bush, using appropriate methods.
  • Manage the site to prevent introduction of invasive weeds, which could become a threat to the Koobabbie Poverty Bush, using appropriate methods (e.g. hand removal, spot spraying).
  • The tolerance of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush and associated native plant species to herbicides, is not known, and weed control programs will need to ensure that non-target plants are protected.
  • Continue to prevent grazing at sites where the species is known to occur, through exclusion fencing or other barriers.
  • Develop and implement a suitable fire management strategy for the Koobabbie Poverty Bush.
  • Identify appropriate intensity and interval of fire to promote seed germination.
  • 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 plan(s), risk register and/or operation maps.
  • Raise awareness of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush within the local community through signage (if appropriate), and fact sheets/information brochures (to be distributed to local land owners, relevant authorities and volunteer organisations, libraries and schools).
  • Maintain liaison with private landholders and land managers of land on which populations occur.
  • Seek input and involvement from Indigenous groups that have an active interest in the area that is suitable habitat for the species.
  • Map habitat critical to the survival of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush.
  • Undertake appropriate seed collection and storage.
  • Investigate options for linking, enhancing or establishing additional populations.
  • Continue to implement national translocation protocols (Vallee et al. 2004) if establishing additional populations is considered necessary and feasible.

The Interim Recovery Plan 2007–2012 (WA DEC 2007d) outlines the existing recovery actions:

  • Land managers have been made aware of the threatened nature of this species, its location and their legal obligations to protect it.
  • The single known population has been fenced to exclude livestock and rabbit netting is in place to further protect individual plants.
  • The landowners are revegetating the habitat of the Koobabbie Poverty Bush with local native plant species.
  • Numerous surveys for the species have been undertaken.
  • The Botanic Garden and Parks Authority (BGPA) have two mature Koobabbie Poverty Bush plants in their nursery sourced from the Western Flora Nursery in 2000.
  • The Australian National Botanic Gardens (ANBG) in Canberra has two cutting derived plants of this species in poor condition in their gardens. They also have two healthy one year old plants that have been grafted onto Myoporum insulare root stock in permanent pot holdings, and approximately nine healthy grafts in a propagation house.

In addition, the Interim Recovery Plan 2007–2012 (WA DEC 2007d) outlines future recovery actions:

  • Coordinate recovery actions
  • Liaise with land managers and relevant Indigenous groups
  • Monitor population
  • Collect seed and other material to preserve genetic diversity
  • Undertake weed control and follow up with additional control if required
  • Develop and implement disturbance trials
  • Promote awareness
  • Map critical habitat
  • Conduct further surveys
  • Obtain biological and ecological information
  • Develop and implement a translocation proposal
  • Review the need for further recovery actions.

The Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (TSSC 2009bk) provides a brief biological overview and recommended management actions. In addition, the Interim Recovery Plan for the Koobabbie Poverty Bush (2007–2012) (WA DEC 2007d) has been prepared.

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:Land clearing, habitat fragmentation and/or habitat degradation Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
Agriculture and Aquaculture:Livestock Farming and Grazing:Grazing pressures and associated habitat changes Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
Climate Change and Severe Weather:Habitat Shifting and Alteration:Habitat loss, modification and/or degradation Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
Ecosystem/Community Stresses:Indirect Ecosystem Effects:Restricted geographical distribution (area of occupancy and extent of occurrence) Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010g) [Recovery Plan].
Invasive and Other Problematic Species and Genes:Invasive Non-Native/Alien Species:Competition and/or habitat degradation by weeds Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
Natural System Modifications:Fire and Fire Suppression:Inappropriate and/or changed fire regimes (frequency, timing, intensity) Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush) (Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC), 2009bj) [Listing Advice].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Low genetic diversity and genetic inbreeding Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010g) [Recovery Plan].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Low numbers of individuals Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010g) [Recovery Plan].
Species Stresses:Indirect Species Effects:Poor recruitment (regeneration) and declining population numbers Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms (Department of Environment and Conservation, 2010g) [Recovery Plan].

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/.

Department of Environment and Conservation (2010g). Recovery Plan for Koobabbie Poverty Bush Eremophila koobabbiensis ms. [Online]. Kensington, Western Australia: Department of Environment and Conservation. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/publications/recovery/eremophila-koobabbiensis.html.

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2009bj). Commonwealth Listing Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush). [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/82691-listing-advice.pdf.

Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC) (2009bk). Commonwealth Conservation Advice on Eremophila sp. Koobabbie (R.J.Chinnock 9540) (Koobabbie Poverty Bush). [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/82691-conservation-advice.pdf.

Vallee, L., T. Hogbin, L. Monks, B. Makinson, M. Matthes & M. Rossetto (2004). Guidelines for the translocation of threatened plants in Australia - Second Edition. Canberra, ACT: Australian Network for Plant Conservation.

Western Australia Department of Conservation and Land Management (WA CALM) (2006). Records held in CALM's Declared Flora Database and rare flora files. Perth, Western Australia: WA CALM.

Western Australia Department of Environment and Conservation (WA DEC) (2008). Records held in DEC's Declared Flora Database and rare flora files. Perth, Western Australia: WA DEC.

Western Australia Department of Environment and Conservation (WA DEC) (n.d.). Koobabbie eremophila - Endangered flora of Western Australia. [Online]. Available from: http://www.dec.wa.gov.au/index2.php?option=com_docman&task=doc_view&gid=3044&Itemid=7. [Accessed: 22-Sep-2009].

Western Australian Department of Environment and Conservation (WA DEC) (2007d). Koobabbie poverty bush (Eremophila koobabbiensis ms), Interim Recovery Plan 2007-2012. Interim Recovery Plan No. 233. [Online]. Perth, Western Australia: WA DEC. Available from: http://www.dec.wa.gov.au/pdf/plants_animals/threatened_species/irps/ere_koo_irp233.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). Eremophila koobabbiensis in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of the Environment, Canberra. Available from: http://www.environment.gov.au/sprat. Accessed Sun, 24 Aug 2014 03:49:45 +1000.