Muchea Bell¬†  |  

Darwinia foetida

Status: Critically Endangered on the EPBC Act list

Muchea Bell is an erect, or spreading, shrub to 0.7 m high, often using other shrubs for support. Young branches are slender, green-brown with prominent, decurrent leaf bases, becoming grey and woody. This species has green flowers and the flowering period is from October to November. Muchea Bell is named after the distinctive foetid smell of the flowers.

Government evidence of impact of climate change:

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  • Australian Government, Conservation Advice, Darwinia sp. Muchea

    Threats The major threats to Muchea Bell include grazing by rabbits; weed invasion; changes in hydrology; inappropriate fire regimes; land clearing and dieback caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi.

  • Australian Government, Listing Advices, Darwinia sp. Muchea

    Other threats include weed invasion; changes in hydrology; inappropriate fire regimes and dieback caused by the root rot pathogen; Phytophthora cinnamomi; although the impact of Phytophthora cinnamomi on this species is currently unknown.

    They also may exacerbate grazing pressure and may increase the fire hazard due to the easy ignition of high fuel loads; which are produced annually by many weed species.

    Inappropriate fire regimes are a further potential threat as mature plants are killed by fire and the species recruits by soil stored seed following fire.

    It is likely that there has been a decline in the species numbers in more recent times; due to grazing by rabbits; weed invasion; changes in hydrology; inappropriate fire regimes; further vegetation clearance and dieback caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi; which may continue in the future.

    The Committee considers that the species has a very restricted geographic distribution; which is precarious for the survival of the species due to the population being fragmented and the current threat of grazing by rabbits and potential threats of weed invasion; changes in hydrology; inappropriate fire regimes; vegetation clearance and dieback caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi.

    Ongoing threats such as grazing by rabbits and potential threats of weed invasion; changes in hydrology; inappropriate fire regimes; vegetation clearance and dieback caused by Phytophthora cinnamomi may cause this number to decline further.

    Installation of water bores; clearing of vegetation; drought and irrigation may cause changes in local hydrology.

    Drought may also impact upon this species.