The Marsh Leek-orchid is a small, fleshy, terrestrial orchid with a solitary erect leaf that is 20-35 cm long and 2-4 mm wide. Flowers are densely crowded along a flower spike 8-12 cm long. The flowers are greenish in colour with brown, pink or mauve tones in the labellum. The labellum is 6-7 mm long, with broadly flared margins at the base, sharply recurved and constricted near the middle, and with a tail-like tip.
Marsh Leek-orchid |
Status: Critically Endangered on the EPBC Act list
Government evidence of impact of climate change:
Australian Government, Conservation Advice, Prasophyllum limnetes
Threats The major threats to the Marsh Leek orchid are inappropriate disturbance; loss of pollinators and climate change.
Australian Government, Listing Advices, Prasophyllum limnetes
Description of Threats 65 The main threats to the Marsh Leek orchid are inappropriate disturbance; loss of pollinators 66 and climate change.
The small size of the population may 78 also be insufficient to sustain pollinators and associated mycorrhizal fungi. 79 Climate change is a further potential threat as changes in the rainfall pattern may lead to the 80 habitat becoming unsuitable for the species and associated pollinators and mycorrhizal fungi. 81 As a near coastal species; the Marsh Leek orchid is also particularly susceptible to changes in 82 sea level and extreme tidal variations; which may result from climate change. 84 9.
Therefore; the fewer number of individuals counted in 2007 may be a 105 result of dormancy rather than decline. 106 It is likely that there has been an historic decline in the species numbers due to vegetation 107 clearance and fragmentation; which may continue in the future due to current and potential 108 threats; including inappropriate disturbance; loss of pollinators and climate change.
This geographic distribution is considered to be very restricted. 128 As discussed under Criterion 1; the Marsh Leek orchid is likely to have experienced an 129 historic decline caused by vegetation clearance and fragmentation and this decline may 130 continue due to current and potential threats; including inappropriate disturbance; loss of 131 pollinators and climate change.
The 146 Committee considers that for the purposes of this criterion these numbers are very low. 147 Current and potential threats; such as loss of pollinators; inappropriate disturbance and 148 climate change; may cause this number to decline.