Australian Endangered Plants

According to the Australian government, over 60 native plant species are now extinct and another 1,000 are considered endangered. There are many reasons for the loss of plant species, among them pollution, urban development, agriculture, introduction of foreign, invasive plant and animal species and a deadly fungus, Phytophthora. Fire is considered a natural event in Australia but the frequency and intensity of the fires has changed, which impacts negatively on certain plant communities.

Wollemi Pine

The Wollemi pine is a tree that grows in the forest and reaches heights of over 130 feet. Botanists know of the existence of only 40 mature trees, all located within Wollemi National Park in New South Wales. Since human activity is the greatest threat to this plant, the exact location of Wollemi pine specimens is classified, according to the Australian government. There is a conservation project underway for this plant.

Davies Waxflower

The Australian government has listed this small shrub as critically endangered, meaning that there is a very high risk of extinction in the near future. Native to Tasmania, and found nowhere else in the world, it has been found in only three areas on the island. These sites are on private land, adjacent to pasture where it is trampled by foraging cattle. Conservation efforts of Davies waxflower include placing fencing around it in its present location and planting it in private gardens.

Orange-Flowered Wattle

Australian botanists know of only 130 orange-flowered wattle plants, contained in a small area, in Western Australia. Since many of the plants have been found growing on roads and rail reserves, the greatest danger to their existence is road maintenance work. Conservation efforts include tutoring road maintenance crews as to the plants' locations and transplanting specimens to a more secluded site.

Keywords: endangered plants in australia, plants on the brink of extinction in australi, australian native plants

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing.