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Encounter Maria Island

20/10/2017

Encounter Maria Island's new ferry Osprey V, that will allow even more visitors to enjoy one of the State's best tourism attractions, was launched today.More

Progress on Cradle Mountain Master Plan

19/10/2017

An important milestone in the Cradle Mountain Master Plan project has been reached following a competitive tender process, with Cumulus Studio chosen to design the Cradle Mountain gateway precinct and the Dove Lake viewing shelter.More

Exciting new proposal for Tasmania's South East Cape

16/10/2017

Award-winning local tourism operator Ian Johnstone can now progress a new project to lease and licence negotiations under the Tourism Opportunities in Tasmania's National Parks, Reserves and Crown Land process.More

Native Wintercress

Current Status

[Photo of native wintercress by L. Gilfedder.]

This small herb is listed as endangered under the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995 and as critically endangered under the Federal Act.

Why is it endangered?

It is endangered because it is a rare endemic plant of Tasmania that mostly occurs on private or unreserved land. It is at risk from such things as grazing, fire and trampling. Grazing is a particular threat because this plant is so palatable that many species prefer to eat it. Native wintercress (Barbarea australis) belongs to the family Brassicaceae which includes such plants as cauliflowers, brussel sprouts and cress.

It was first recorded in the 19th century from northern Tasmania by J. D. Hooker. For a long time there were no further records of this shortlived herb but then in 1986 it was rediscovered at Waddamana. It has now been recorded from a number of rivers, including the Ouse, Shannon and Clyde rivers. Plants can grow up to 1m tall.

What is being done?

An important part of this species' protection is to educate people about such plants. To an untrained eye it could be easily overlooked or even seen as a weed! Little is yet known of its ecology. Various Tasmanian schools have been involved in propagating this plant.

View Distribution Map

Recommended further reading

Kirkpatrick J., L. Gilfedder and R. Hale 1988. City Parks and Cemeteries. Tasmanian Conservation Trust.