Melaleuca ericifolia swamp forest has been especially

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Melaleuca ericifolia swamp forest has been especially affected, with important habitat for a number of threatened flora and fauna species being compromised (RMCD 2007), while a significant proportion of peat within Nook Swamp and on the plains to the west has been lost (RMCD 2007, Corbett & Corbett 2010; Figure 4). More than 95% of the vegetation burnt in 2001 is thought to have burnt again in 2007, and the relatively short period between fires is likely to King Island Biodiversity Management Plan 24
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have disadvantaged the regeneration of a number of flora species (RMCD 2007). Fire is a major threat for vegetation, flora species with limited distribution and sessile fauna species on King Island. Three of the vegetation communities recorded within the 2007 burn area are considered highly sensitive to fire (Pyrke & Marsden-Smedley 2005), and at least ten threatened flora species were known to occur within the burn area (RMCD 2007). Fire has been identified as the single major ongoing threat to King Island populations of the Southern Hairy Red Snail (Bonham 2009). The 2001 and 2007 wildfires, along with earlier fire events in the Island’s history, have had considerable negative effects on threatened flora and fauna. Wildfire continues to be a major ongoing threat to both the quality and extent of King Island’s biodiversity and is considered to be a major threat to threatened species on King Island. Species at high risk from fire include: King Island Thornbill, King Island Scrubtit, Orange-bellied Parrot, King Island Green Rosella, Southern Hairy Red Snail, Tasmanian blue gum, sassafras, musk daisy bush, slender and skirted treeferns and scrambling groundfern. Fire is a significant threat to the two endemic bird species, the King Island Thornbill and King Island Scrubtit. For example, the area of habitat for the King Island Scrubtit at Nook Swamp prior to the 2007 fire was estimated to be 600 ha; the area post fire is estimated to be only 90 ha. The loss of over 90% of forest and scrub habitat at Nook Swamp is also likely to have permanently removed a significant area of potential habitat for the King Island Thornbill (RMCD 2007). In addition, the following vegetation communities are particularly vulnerable to fire: Acacia melanoxylon swamp forest, Eucalyptus brookeriana wet forest, King Island eucalypt woodland, Eucalyptus globulus King Island forest and Melaleuca ericifolia swamp forest. King Island Biodiversity Management Plan 25
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Figure 4. Peat loss in Lavinia State Reserve (Corbett & Corbett 2010) King Island Biodiversity Management Plan 26
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Weed invasion Weed invasion is an important issue for biodiversity conservation on King Island and affects many of the native vegetation communities. Weeds threaten native habitats by competing with native species, and they have the potential to modify habitats to the detriment of native species. For the purposes of the Plan, a weed is defined as a plant that was not present on King Island prior to European settlement, and that is now considered to be naturalised. This threat includes existing significant weed species and ‘sleepers’.
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  • Fall '14
  • The Hours, ........., Threatened species, Bass Strait, Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999, King Island

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