The vegetation and flora of Strzelecki National Park, Flinders Island, Tasmania

  • A botanical survey of the vegetation of Strzelecki National Park, on south-western Flinders Island, Tasmania (lat. 40° 13' S; long. 148° 06' E) resulted in 313 vascular plant taxa, being recorded. Of these, 16 are introduced. Of the native flora, 9 are currently considered threatened according to the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995. Some of these occur on the calcareous rocks and soils on the western coastal fringe of the Park. There is low species diversity in large areas, for reasons that include extensive ground disturbance by pigs, very high fire frequency in some areas and the depauperate nature of island floras. There were also 137 species of liverworts and mosses recorded for the Park. Most plant habitats on Flinders Island are represented in the Park. The flora retains an interesting rainforest and wet forest element which shares floristic similarities with rainforest gullies in mainland south-eastern Australia, with the Tasmanian north-eastern highlands, and even with western Tasmania. There are also some affinities with the dry Bass Strait and southern Australian floras. The pattern and composition of the vegetation is strongly shaped by several factors. Extensive fires have been promoted by fuel accumulation and deliberate burning on the Park perimeter. Topography strongly influences the vegetation (Mt Strzelecki is 756 m high) due to the degree of exposure to strong winds and protection from fire. Cloud capping of the mountain increases the potential moisture available. Wind is a large local factor in vegetation structure. Controls on vegetation at any given site are also responsive to aspect, bedrock depth and other factors. Eleven vegetation mapping communities are defined, the Park being important for the reservation of several of these. The Park is characterised by the presence of rainfall and evapotranspiration extremes and the vegetation varies accordingly, with rainforest patches in fire protected niches of the mountains and dry heathland on the coastal areas. Strong westerly winds combined with the abruptly rugged mountainous topography have caused some violent localised destruction of forest and scrub canopies by wind.

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Author:Stephen Harris, Karen Ziegler, Matthew Dell
ISSN:0727- 9620
ISSN:2200 - 405X
Parent Title (English):Cunninghamia : a journal of plant ecology for eastern Australia
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2015
Date of first Publication:2015/03/23
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2019/10/23
Tag:Bass Strait; Threatened species; bryophytes; cloud forests; cloud stripping; dry sclerophyll forest; feral pigs; fire storms; heathland; island flora; mountain vegetation; rainforest; steep precipitation gradient
Page Number:22
First Page:163
Last Page:184
Dewey Decimal Classification:5 Naturwissenschaften und Mathematik / 58 Pflanzen (Botanik) / 580 Pflanzen (Botanik)
Sammlungen:Sammlung Biologie / Sondersammelgebiets-Volltexte
Zeitschriften / Jahresberichte:Cunninghamia : A Journal of Plant Ecology for Eastern Australia / Cunninghamia : A Journal of Plant Ecology for Eastern Australia, Volume 15 (2015)
Licence (German):License LogoDeutsches Urheberrecht