Endangered Plants & Animals
with a focus on the Grey-headed Flying Fox
93 Endangered Plants and Animals
Endangered species are the ones which have not been seen in the wild over a period of time through searches, the distribution and habitat have been reduced to a level that the species can be in danger of extinction, the population has declined and its survival in the wild is unlikely if a threatening will continue.
Black Walnut - threatened plant species
Originally from the US, and due to its strength and ability to grow in a range of moisture and temperature conditions was known to be used for guns and instruments. It will grow best in deep soil and will like the creek environment. The black walnut actively moves nitrogen from the subsoil back to surface soil through their leaf drop and fine root turnover, thus, reducing the risk of soil acidification due to nitrate leaching and fertilising pastures. It can grow to be 30 m (98ft) by 20 m (65ft), but is very slowly growing.
Smooth-shelled Macadamia - edible nut on this threatened tree
There are four species of Macadamia, two of which are used for production of Macadamia nuts in Australia (Macadamia tetraphylla and M. integrifoIia). This species is only commercially planted to a small extent in Australia although cultivar hybrids between it and M. integrifolia are common. Named after John Macadam - a doctor from Victoria. These nuts were the first native food to be cultivated, they are now cultivated in other countries as well as Australia and considered Australia's finest contribution to the culinary arts.
Fine-leaved Tuckeroo - a threatened plant species
The fine-leaved tuckeroo likes the moisture environment and can be found next to creeks and rivers or at the edge of rain forests. It is a small tree (up to 15 metres high) with yellowish flowers and is native in Australia. Due to development, introduction of weeds and clearing, the native tree became endangered and is under ‘vulnerable’ status in Queensland.
Grey-headed Flying Fox - Australia's only native flying fox
This is one of the greatest Australian flying foxes and has a wingspan over one metre.
They usually travel at night up to 50 km to find their food. They are primarily nectivores and are the main pollinators of many of Australia’s trees that blossom at night. They also feed on a variety of fruits; this is why they are also known as ‘fruits bats’. Their habitat is eastern Australia, including Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria, where they like to camp next to creeks, forests and even urban areas. Although they appear in large groups, numbers of Grey-headed Flying Foxes are declining because of habitat clearing.
They have a significant environmental impact by dispersing pollen and seeds throughout landscapes. With a diet of over 100 flowering and fleshy fruited trees - including numerous eucalypt, melaleuca and banksia species - the flying-fox fundamentally binds together various strands of life into an interdependent web. Clearing and development along Australia’s eastern coastal strip reduced the available native vegetation for the flying-fox, therefore now they moved to look for food in horticultural crops. Their current status is now vulnerable.