The shining cudweed is a low, mat-forming perennial daisy. The species’ crowded stems are only a few centimetres tall. The densely spaced leaves are beset with shining, silvery hairs on both surfaces. The flowers of the shining cudweed are dissimilar to the typical daisy flower with multiple petals, having instead a solitary white petal on a short (up to 3 cm long) woolly stem. The shining cudweed is superficially similar to another mat-forming alpine daisy, Euchiton argentifolius (silver cudweed). The two species are sometimes found growing together. When not in flower or fruit it may be possible to distinguish the two species by their old flower stalks, which are much shorter in the shining cudweed (up to 3 cm compared with to 15 cm in the silver cudweed). The shining cudweed also has coarser hairs on its leaves.
Shining Cudweed |
Status: Vulnerable on the EPBC Act list
Government evidence of impact of climate change:
Australian Government, Conservation Advice, Argyrotegium nitidulum
Threats The primary risk is the warming and drying of alpine ecosystems as a result of climate change; which will reduce suitable habitat and change the existing ecology; potentially increasing competition and the risk of the introduction of invasive species.
Threat factor Threat Evidence base type and status Climate change Warming suspected Green (cited in Lindenmeyer et al.; 2014) states that virtually and or drying future all perceived threats to the mainland alpine ecosystem either of alpine result from climate change or are exacerbated by it. ecosystems The shining cudweed appears to be dependent on damp bare ground for recruitment and persistence (TSS 2015).
The processes that lead to the formation of snow and ice and potentially the open spaces of soil that are understood to be required for the recruitment of seedlings in populations of the species are susceptible to the predicted effects of climate change through a warming and drying out of recruitment niches or a resultant increase in cover by tussock grasses or shrubs (TSS 2015).
The locally restricted distribution of the species makes it susceptible to even small changes in climatic conditions (TSS 2015).
Increased fire frequency in the alpine region or increased hazard reduction burning in winter outside of it could change the degree of nitrogen in the atmosphere; and eventually alter habitat qualities (Lindenmeyer et al.; 2014).