The robust greenhood found for the first time since 1941
||The robust greenhood – presumed extinct for 70 years. Photo: Jeroen van Veen
Listed as nationally extinct and not seen since 1941, the robust greenhood orchid has been rediscovered on Bush Heritage's Nardoo Hills Reserves, 100 km from Bendigo in central Victoria.
Staff of Bush Heritage and the North Central Catchment Management Authority discovered the orchid on a recent field trip to the reserves.
Jeroen Van Veen, Field Officer for Nardoo Hills Reserves, says this is an amazing find and wonderful news for biodiversity.
'We often hear of species decline and extinction, so it is amazing to find that this species has survived and is protected on our reserve.'
'This discovery reinforces the value of what Bush Heritage does – putting land aside for conservation and managing threats such as rabbits, weeds and inappropriate fire regimes.'
Orchids such as the robust greenhood are extremely vulnerable to habitat loss from ploughing, use of fertilizers and herbicides, grazing and feral herbivores. It is presumed this species has been hanging on in a few small refuge populations.
The identity of the orchid was confirmed by experts from DSE and CSIRO Plant Sciences through a series of field trips and a comprehensive identification process.
To give the robust greenhood the best chance of survival, Bush Heritage will continue to exclude stock, protect the population from rabbits, hares and wallabies, and manage competing weeds.
Nardoo Hills Reserves cover 817 hectares and contribute to the protection of some of the most threatened ecosystems in south-eastern Australia. The Bush Heritage property, purchased in 2005, also boasts a significant population of another threatened orchid, the northern golden moths orchid.
Page Last Updated: Tuesday 7 December 2010