Endangered species (Vict.)

To: <>
Subject: Endangered species (Vict.)
From: "Aaron Organ" <>
Date: Tue, 30 Sep 2003 10:01:26 +1000
Hi All,
        Further to the information provided by Chris Tzaros and Martin O'Brien 
on threatened species in Victoria, it has been reiterated in past discussions 
that all records of rare and threatened taxa (including birds, mammals, 
reptiles, frogs, fish etc) are encouraged to be submitted on the Atlas of 
Victoria Wildlife (AVW).  Currently instead of filling out a number of AVW 
fauna sheets for different localities, which has been the case in the past, 
Barbara Baxter of DSE (Ph. 9412 4011) can now receive electronic files (excel 
format) of all fauna records to be entered on the AVW - there is a special 
spreadsheet that can be provided by Barbara.  All records are adequately 
screened to ensure that all or most are legitimate.

Furthermore, other States have similar databases, which are useful to determine 
the abundances, movement patterns, breeding behaviour and status of a number of 
species over time.


Aaron Organ

Biosis Research Pty. Ltd.
Natural and Cultural Heritage Consultants
322 Bay Street (PO Box 489)

ph: (03) 9646 9499
fax: (03) 9646 9242


----Original Message-----

Sent: Tuesday, 30 September 2003 9:29 AM
Subject: Endangered species (Vict.)
Importance: High

In response to Bob Cook's request about threatened species, I can provide
the following information for all Victorian vertebrate taxa.  You can
delete now if this doesn't interest!

As Chris Tzaros has already indicated, the Victorian legislation covering
threatened species is called the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act.  Species on
the schedules of the Act have been formally assessed by an independent
advisory commmitee to the Minister (Scientific Advisory Committee).  The
Minister then adds these taxa to the 'list of threatened taxa' maintained
under the Act.  People often get the species 'listed' under the Act
confused with the advisory lists produced by government biologists, but
they are not quite the same.  The FFG listings are grounded in state
government legislation, while the advisory lists are those produced  by
agreement amongst various biologists.

The lists of threatened species produced by the Department of
Sustainability & Environment (DSE)(Vict.) is a different process to the
lists resulting from a decision by the Scientific Advisory Committee under
the FFG Act although the same plant or animal may appear on both lists.
The former is used by the Department to assist in strategic planning and in
local management plans.  After a final recommendation is accepted under the
FFG Act the Department is required to produce an Action Statement to
alleviate the threatening processes that caused the listing.  It is likely
that any species subject to a recommendation for listing under the FFG Act
will already be on the list of threatened species.

Confusion also partly arises due to the use of different categories and
criteria in assessing conservation status.

Under the FFG Act, items are assessed for listing as 'threatened' using the
criteria contained within the FFG Regulations. This broad category is not
further sub-divided.

The DSE lists use different criteria:

The 'Advisory List of Threatened Vertebrate Fauna in Victoria - 2003', uses
the IUCN (International Union for the Conservation of Nature) Red List
criteria (the international standard) where the term 'threatened' includes
'critically endangered', 'endangered' and 'vulnerable'.  It also recognises
other threat categories of  'lower risk' or 'data deficient'.

So in the case of the Plains-wanderer, it would be listed under the FFG Act
as 'threatened'. In the opinion of DSE experts, it is considered
'Endangered', a subset of 'threatened' based on the information available
at the time that the lists are prepared.

It is part of my job to provide people with information on threatened
species for Victorian taxa (all plants & animals).  I can supply current
excel tables of the FFG-listed taxa, ecological communities and potentially
threatening processes, and also copies of the 'DSE Advisory list' as well.

Both the FFG list and (eventually) the 'DSE Advisory list' should be
available on the DSE web pages.  Chris Tzaros has correctly indicated the
web site and the links to the FFG lists

then follow the prompts to 'Plants and animals', then 'Native plants and
'Threatened species' etc.

Some other Australian states have similar processes and legislation and may
have data available on-line (eg. the Commonwealth EPBC Act).

If anyone would like copies on the current FFG-listings or of the 'DSE
2003' list, then please feel free to contact me directly.

cheers, Martin

Martin O'Brien
Executive Scientific Officer, Scientific Advisory Committee
Department of Sustainability and Environment
4/250 Victoria Pde. (PO Box 500), East Melbourne  3002

Tel: 9412 4567  Fax: 9412 4586
(prefixes: Interstate 03 International 613)

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