Australian Bureau of Statistics

Rate the ABS website
ABS Home > Statistics > By Release Date
4613.0 - Australia's Environment: Issues and Trends, 2006  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 10/11/2006   
   Page tools: Print Print Page Print all pages in this productPrint All RSS Feed RSS Bookmark and Share Search this Product  
Contents >> Landscape trends >> Biodiversity

BIODIVERSITY

THREATENED FAUNA SPECIES


The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth) (EPBC Act) classifies listed threatened species into six categories – extinct, extinct in the wild, critically endangered, endangered, vulnerable, and conservation dependent. At the commencement of the EPBC Act the list of threatened fauna consisted only of those previously listed under the Endangered Species Protection Act 1992. For the purpose of this publication, this data has been presented against the year 2000.

Since the introduction of the EPBC Act, the number of listed threatened fauna rose by nearly 20% from 323 to 384. In 2006, about half of these species were vulnerable, one-third were endangered and the remainder were presumed extinct. However, these increases reflect taxonomic revisions, curation of collections, databasing information and field investigations and do not necessarily represent a change in the conservation status of the fauna.


LIST OF THREATENED FAUNA, 2006
Extinct Frogs (4)
Birds (23)
Mammals (27)
Extinct in the wild fishes (1)
Critically endangeredfishes (2)
Reptiles (1)
Birds (5)
Mammals (2)
Other animals (4)
Endangeredfishes (16)
Frogs (15)
Reptiles (11)
Birds (38)
Mammals (34)
Other animals (7)
Vulnerablefishes (20)
Frogs (12)
Reptiles (38)
Birds (64)
Mammals (53)
Other animals (6)
Conservation dependentmammals (1)
Total Fauna (384)

Source: Department of the Environment and Heritage, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity, last viewed June 2006.

THREATENED FAUNA SPECIES
Graph: Threatened Fauna Species
(a) Includes the category 'extinct in the wild'.
(b) Includes the category 'conservation dependent'.
Source: Department of the Environment and Heritage, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity,last viewed June 2006

THREATENED FLORA SPECIES


The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth) (EPBC Act) classifies listed threatened species into six categories – extinct, extinct in the wild, critically endangered, endangered, vulnerable, and conservation dependent. At the commencement of the EPBC Act the list of threatened flora, consisted only of those previously listed under the Endangered Species Protection Act 1992. For the purpose of this publication, this data has been presented against the year 2000.

Variations to the list under the EPBC Act can be made by the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Heritage following consideration of their conservation status by the Threatened Species Scientific Committee. Thus changes need to be treated cautiously. Species can be removed or added because of improved knowledge or sometimes new species are discovered, or those thought extinct are rediscovered.

To assist the conservation of listed threatened species, the Act provides for: the identification of key threatening process; the conservation of critical habitat; and the making of: recovery plans; threat abatement plans; wildlife conservation plans; conservation agreements; and conservation orders.

Since the introduction of the EPBC Act, the number of listed threatened flora rose by nearly 10% from 1,194 to 1,295. However, these increases reflect taxonomic revisions, curation of collections, databasing information and field investigations and do not necessarily represent a change in the conservation status of the flora.

THREATENED FLORA SPECIES
Graph: Threatened Flora Species
(a) Includes the category 'extinct in the wild'.
(b) Includes the category 'conservation dependent'.
Source: Data compiled from the Environment and Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth)
– List of threatened flora, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity, last viewed September 2006.


THREATENED ECOLOGICAL COMMUNITIES



Another measure of environmental condition includes recording the number of ecological communities threatened with extinction. Scientific committees examine the case for listing threatened ecological communities. The listed communities are not necessarily the only ones in danger of extinction. The communities undergo significant investigation and survey work as part of the assessment of the scientific committee, but it is likely that other poorly-known communities are also under threat of extinction.
Ideally each one should have a recovery or management plan and associated actions for each ecological community.

The number of threatened ecological communities rose from 21 in 2000 to 36 in 2006. However, these increases reflect taxonomic revisions, curation of collections, databasing information and field investigations and do not necessarily represent a change in the conservation status of the fauna.

THREATENED ECOLOGICAL COMMUNITIES
Graph: Threatened ecological communities

Source: Data compiled from the Environment and Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth)
– List of threatened ecological communities, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity, last viewed July 2006.
REGISTER OF CRITICAL HABITAT


The Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Heritage may identify and list habitat critical to the survival of a listed threatened species or ecological community. Details of this identified habitat will be recorded in a Register of Critical Habitat.

It should be noted that habitat critical to the survival of a species or ecological community will depend largely on the particular requirements of the threatened species or ecological community concerned. For example, areas only incidentally used by a threatened species, and which the species is unlikely to be dependent upon for its survival or recovery, may not be areas of habitat critical to the survival of that particular species.

The identification of critical habitat for the Register of Critical Habitat, including location and extent information, is a matter of ecological judgment, and is based on the most up-to-date scientific information available to the Threatened Species Scientific Committee and the Commonwealth Minister for the Environment and Heritage at the time the habitat was being considered. As new or additional information becomes available, critical habitat identified on the Register may be amended.
The Minister must, when making or adopting a recovery plan, consider whether to list habitat that is identified in the recovery plan as being critical to the survival of the species or ecological community for which the recovery plan is made or adopted. There is no legal provision for public nomination of Critical Habitat.


REGISTER OF CRITICAL HABITAT
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006

Number on Register of critical habitat

3
3
4
5
5
Effective Date
2002Diomedea exulans (Wandering Albatross) – Macquarie Island
Thalassarche cauta (Shy Albatross) - Albatross Island, The Mewstone, Pedra Branca
Thalassarche chrysostoma (Grey-headed Albatross) – Macquarie Island
2004Manorina melanotis (Black-eared Miner) - Gluepot Reserve, Taylorville Station and Calperum Station, South Australia, excluding the area of Calperum Station south and east of Main Wentworth Road
2005Lepidium ginninderrense (Ginninderra Peppercress) – Northwest corner Belconnen Naval Transmission Station, ACT

Source: Data compiled from the Environment and Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth) – Register of critical habitat, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity, last viewed June 2006.


LISTED KEY THREATENING PROCESSES



A process is defined as a Key threatening process if it threatens, or may threaten, the survival, abundance or evolutionary development of a native species or ecological community (for example, predation by the European Red Fox).

A process can be listed as a Key threatening process if it could: cause a native species or ecological community to become eligible for adding to a threatened list (other than conservation dependent); or cause an already listed threatened species or threatened ecological community to become more endangered; or if it adversely affects two or more listed threatened species or threatened ecological communities.

The assessment of a threatening process as a Key threatening process is the first step under Commonwealth law to addressing the impact of a particular threat. Once a threatening process is listed under the EPBC Act, a Threat Abatement Plan can be put into place if it is proven to be “a feasible, effective and efficient way” to abate the threatening process. The number of listed key threatening processes has increased from 6 in 2000 to 17 in 2006.


LISTED KEY THREATENING PROCESSES
2002
2003
2004
2005
2006

No. of Listed Key Threatening Processes

12
14
14
16
17
Effective DateListed Key Threatening Processes
2000
  • Competition and land degradation by feral goats
  • Competition and land degradation by feral rabbits
  • Predation by feral cats
  • Predation by the European Red Fox (Vulpes vulpes)
  • Dieback caused by the root-rot fungus (Phytophthora cinnamomi)
  • Incidental catch (or bycatch) of seabirds during oceanic longline fishing operations
2001
  • Land clearance
  • Loss of climatic habitat caused by anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases
  • Incidental catch (bycatch) of Sea Turtle during coastal otter-trawling operations within Australian waters north of 28 degrees South
  • Predation, habitat degradation, competition and disease transmission by feral pigs
  • Psittacine Circoviral (beak and feather) disease affecting psittacine species
2002
  • Infection of amphibians with chytrid fungus resulting in chytridiomycosis
2003
  • Injury and fatality to vertebrate marine life caused by ingestion of, or entanglement in, harmful marine debris
  • The reduction in the biodiversity of Australian native fauna and flore due to the red imported fire ant, Soloenopsis invicta (fire ant)
2005
  • Loss of biodiversity and ecosystem integrity following invasion by the Yellow Crazy Ant (Anoplolepis gracilipes) on Christmas Island, Indian Ocean
  • Predation by exotic rats on Australian offshore islands of less than 1,000 km2 (100,000 ha)
  • The biological effects, including lethal toxic ingestion, caused by Cane Toad (Bufo marinus)
2006
  • Predation by exotic rats on Australian offshore islands of less than 1,000 km2 (100,000 ha)

Source: Data compiled from the Environment and Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cwlth) – Listed key threatening processes, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity, last viewed June 2006.



Previous PageNext Page

Bookmark and Share. Opens in a new window


Commonwealth of Australia 2014

Unless otherwise noted, content on this website is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 Australia Licence together with any terms, conditions and exclusions as set out in the website Copyright notice. For permission to do anything beyond the scope of this licence and copyright terms contact us.