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Species profile—Daviesia discolor


Plantae (plants) → Equisetopsida (land plants) → LeguminosaeDaviesia discolor

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Species details

Plantae (plants)
Equisetopsida (land plants)
Scientific name
Daviesia discolor Pedley
WildNet taxon ID
Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NCA) status
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC) status
Conservation significant
Pest status
Short Notes
BRI 189454, 189455, 189456, status annotated by author
Daviesia discolor is a glabrous, multi-stemmed shrub growing to 2 m high. The branchlets are angular, ascending and ribbed. The phyllodes are spirally arranged along a branchlet, linear-elliptic in shape, more or less falcate, tapered at both ends, articulate at the base, 4 to 16 cm long by 4 to 11 mm wide, thin, green and discolorous. The flowers are in inflorescences borne in the angles between the upper phyllodes and the branchlets. The inflorescences are 3 to 8 flowered, the axis is 2.5 to 10 mm long. The flowers are of a typical pea form with a large petal at the back (the standard), two smaller lateral petals (wings) and two inner petals fused together to form the keel. The standard is yellow with dull red markings surrounding an intense yellow spot in the centre. The wings are yellow towards the apex, dull red towards the base. The keel is pale green with a dull red tip. The pods are 7 to 8.5 mm long, obliquely broadly triangular, thin-walled, lead-grey or purple in colour. The pods contain one to two seeds.
Daviesia discolor can be confused with D. arborea, but D. arborea can grow into a 14 m tree, has corky bark, longer inflorescences (10 to 27 mm) with more flowers (8 to 15) and has a more southern distribution (Crisp, 1995; DSEWPC, 2012).
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Daviesia discolor is known from three widely disjunct localities in Queensland, near Blackwater on the Blackdown Tableland, in the Mount Walsh area near Biggenden and north of Mount Playfair within Carnarvon National Park. The species is conserved within Blackdown Tableland National Park, Mount Walsh National Park and Carnarvon National Park (DSEWPC, 2012; Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Distributional limits
-23.8067566, 146.9094739
-25.6506354, 152.0216183
Range derivation
Range derived from extent of the taxon's verified records
Daviesia discolor occurs from coastal hills to mountain slopes and ridges, 50-1100 m in altitude, mostly on fine-textured soils, which may be derived from acid volcanic or metamorphic rocks. On the Blackdown Tableland, D. discolor occurs on sandy soil derived from sandstone and on lateritic clay, at altitudes of 600 to 900 m, in open eucalypt forest dominated by species such as Eucalyptus sphaerocarpa and E. nigra. In the Mount Walsh area, D. discolor grows in very tall open forests of Corymbia trachyphloia and E. acmenoides on hillcrests and slopes at 500 to 580 m altitude on well-drained, shallow sandy loam clays. The population in Carnarvon National Park occurs on brown sandy loam of creek banks in mixed shrubland with scattered Triodia sp. hummocks and Angophora sp. trees (DSEWPC, 2012; Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Daviesia discolor has been observed re-sprouting after fire (Barker, 1997; Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Flowering of Daviesia discolor occurs from August to October and seedpods have been recorded in October (Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Threatening processes
The main identified threat to D. discolor is fire, either deliberate fuel reduction burns, or wildfire. Although the species appears to be capable of resprouting from rootstock after fire, too high fire frequency would eventually lead to population declines. The main potential threats to D. discolor include cattle grazing, which may indirectly affect the species through the use of regular fires to promote grass in the understorey. No exotic weed species were observed at the Mount Walsh National Park, although Lantana (Lantana camara) was a common weed in the vicinity of these populations (Halford, 1998; DSEWPA, 2012).
Status notes
Daviesia discolor is listed as Vulnerable under the Environment and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 and Vulnerable under the Queensland Nature Conservation Act 1992.
Management documents
Barker, M (1997). Daviesia discolor Species Management Profile, Department of Natural Resources, Queensland.
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPC) (2012). Daviesia discolor in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, Canberra. Available from: Accessed Thu, 23 Feb 2012 17:19:54 +1100.
Management recommendations
DSEWPC (2012) documents regional and local priority actions to support the recovery of Daviesia discolor. A summary of these include: avoiding habitat loss, disturbance and modification (e.g. monitor known populations, monitor the progress of recovery, identify populations of high conservation priority, minimise land use impacts); enabling recovery of additional sites and/or populations (e.g. undertake appropriate seed collection and storage (e.g. undertake appropriate seed collection and storage); increasing conservation awareness (e.g. raise awareness of the species within the local community); controlling invasive weeds (identify and remove weeds in the locals areas); minimising trampling, browsing or grazing (ensure grazing management practices, such as burning do not adversely affect D. discolor; and managing fire (develop and implement a suitable fire management strategy for D. discolor).
Other management recommendations include: the establishment of a protective buffer (0.25 ha) that excludes clearing with all D. discolor at least 25 m inside; where D. discolor occurs, the interval between prescribed burns is to vary from 6-30 years; requests for grazing lease/permit holders to burn for grass production to be assessed; monitor the impact of grazing and adjust accordingly (Barker, 1997).
Occurs in the following Queensland pastoral districts: Burnett, Leichhardt, Wide Bay.
Barker, M. (1997). Daviesia discolor Species Management Profile, Department of Natural Resources, Queensland.
Crisp, M.D. (1995). Contributions Toward a Revision of Daviesia (Fabaceae: Mirbelieae). III. A Synopsis of the Genus. Australian Systematic Botany 8 (6): 1188.
Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPC) (2012). Daviesia discolor in Species Profile and Threats Database, Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities, Canberra. Accessed 23/02/2012.
Halford, D. (1988). Survey of Threatened Plant Species in South East Queensland Biogeographical Region. Department of Environment, Queensland CRA/RFA Steering Committee.
Queensland Herbarium (2012). Specimen label information. Queensland Herbarium. Accessed 24/02/2012.
Profile author
Lynise Wearne (24/02/2012)

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Data source

This profile data is sourced from the QLD Wildlife Data API using the Get species by ID function used under CC-By 4.0.

This information is sourced from the WildNet database managed by the Queensland Department of Environment and Science.

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Last updated
8 March 2022