Thanks again to those volunteers who helped us search for Grevillea infecunda Anglesea Grevillea plants in the Hammonds Road area on Tuesday, 17 April.
We managed to count 295 plants, which had not been previously mapped; this is an amazing number. These records will be added to our flora and fauna database, The Victorian Biodiversity Atlas. This monitoring is helping us to build a better picture of where the Anglesea Grevillea plants occur, or don’t occur, within our region.
Next month, I would like to invite Angair members to join me, to revisit an area on the north side of Gum Flats Road, where we, Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), with the help of Angair and FEO, established facilities to monitor the impacts of fire on the Grevillea plants. A number of plants were tagged in 2013, in preparation for a fuel reduction burn planned for this forest block. The burn has now been completed, so it is time to go in and measure the severity of this burn on each of the tagged Grevillea plants.
Anglesea Grevillea is nationally listed as Vulnerable, and has an estimated total population of 1500 plants. Most known populations are on public land, managed by Parks Victoria or Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. A large majority of populations and known individuals occurs on public land, zoned as Bushfire Management Zone (BMZ), where frequent, high coverage planned fire is prescribed. The Gum Flats Road population is one of the largest populations of the plant.
Anglesea Grevillea appears to reproduce solely by root-suckering. It can survive fire by sprouting anew, and plants will sucker after fire, but the role of fire in influencing adult survival and reproduction viability is unknown.
Questions we hope to answer with this monitoring:
- Does adult plant survival above ground vary significantly between unburnt and burnt sites?
- What proportion of burnt adult plants survives the fire?
- Does sucker survival above ground vary significantly between unburnt and burnt sites?
- Does fire stimulate suckering in an Anglesea Grevillea plant?
- Is fire intensity important to Anglesea Grevillea?
If you would like further information about this project please contact me at the Anglesea DELWP office on 5220 2032.
Rani Hunt – Biodiversity Officer DELWP