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Species profile—Cyperus clarus


Plantae (plants) → Equisetopsida (land plants) → CyperaceaeCyperus clarus

Photo of Cyperus clarus () - Sharp, D.,Queensland Herbarium, DES (Licence: CC BY NC)
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Species details

Plantae (plants)
Equisetopsida (land plants)
Scientific name
Cyperus clarus S.T.Blake
WildNet taxon ID
Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NCA) status
Conservation significant
Pest status
Short Notes
BRI 008181 (Holotype), 257729 (Isotype), handwriting of author
Cyperus clarus is a slender tufted perennial. Its stems are erect and rigid, smooth to scabrous at the tip, 15 to 80 cm tall and 1 to 2.5 mm thick. The leaves are flat or folded and are 2 to 6 mm wide and shorter than the flowering stem.
The flower head has 3 to 6 branches to 10 cm long. Each branch consists of dense clusters made up of 8 to 20 short spikelets. The spikelets are flattened and are 7 to 18 mm long by 3 to 4.5 mm wide in side view. The glumes (scales enclosing the flower) are golden brown to brown and are 2.5 to 4 mm long with the sides having 3 to 4 nerves and an excurved tip to 0.8 mm long. The egg-shaped nuts are dusky brown to black in colour, 1.6 to 1.9 mm long and 0.6 to 0.8 mm diameter. (Wilson, 1991; Wilson, 2008)
Cyperus clarus is most closely related to C. fulvus, with which it occasionally grows, it differs in its generally broader spikelets and larger glumes, which are more evenly coloured yellow to dark golden brown. (Wilson, 1991).
View Map
Cyperus clarus is found from near Emerald in central Queensland to near Delungra on the New South Wales north-west slopes (Queensland Herbarium, 2012). There is one population of the species located within Jandowae State Forest (Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Distributional limits
-23.2914917, 147.1175
-28.0313889, 152.0347223
Range derivation
Range derived from extent of the taxon's verified records
Cyperus clarus grows in grassland or open woodland, in heavy soils derived from basalt. (Wilson 1991; Wilson, 2008). The species is associated with grasslands where Aristida leptopoda and Panicum queenslandicum occur on deep alluvial black clay; in Eucalyptus melanophloia woodland with mid-dense ground stratum of Chrysopogon fallax; growing with Stemmacantha australis in mountain coolibah woodland on basalt ridges; and in Dichanthium grassland with Cyperus bifax and Fimbristylis spp. (Queensland Herbarium, 2012).
Cyperus clarus flowers from spring to summer. (Wilson 2008; Queensland Herbarium, 2012)
Threatening processes
As Cyperus clarus is a black soil grassland specialist, land clearing for agriculture is a major threat. Land clearing can also lead to invasive weeds. Additional threats include mining activities which removes individuals and disrupts pollinator and disperser interactions (DERMa, 2010). Threats noted within the Burnet Mary NRM region include inappropriate grazing regimes and urban development (2010b). Grazing is also considered a threat in the south west management region (DERM, 2010C). Although C. clarus is not very palatable to cattle, it is grazed when alternative food sources are limited (e.g. during drought) (DERM, 2010c).
Status notes
Cyperus clarus is listed as Vulnerable under the Queensland Nature Conservation Act 1992
Management documents
Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) 2010a, b, c.
Management recommendations
Current management actions are outlined in DERM (2010a, b, c) and include the production of essential habitat mapping which identifies key areas for listed threatened species, Land for Wildlife Program, the Nature Refuges Programmes, Grazing Land Management Workshops and implementation of Enhancing Biodiversity Hot Spots along Western Queensland Stock Routes (DERM, 2010). Other management actions include; Land management workshops in western Mary and parts of the northern Burnett and conservation Partnership projects which informs landholders of all options including property management planning; community capacity building (to increase the awareness of local residents regarding development impacts of priority species and habitat) and SW NRM Pasture Recovery Initiative (DERM, 2010c). There are many more recommendations discussed in (DERM 2010a, b, c).
Contributors: Ron Booth, Mellisa Mayhew 16/02/2009
Lazarides, M. and Hince, D. (Eds). (1993). CSIRO Handbook of Economic Plants of Australia. CSIRO Publications. Canberra.
Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) (2010a). Border Rivers Maranoa-Balonne Natural Resource Management Region Back on Track Actions for Biodiversity. Department of Environment and Resource Management, Brisbane.
Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) (2010b). Burnett Mary Natural Resource Management Region Back on Track Actions for Biodiversity. Department of Environment and Resource Management, Brisbane.
Queensland Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) (2010c). South West Natural Resource Management Region Back on Track Actions for Biodiversity. Department of Environment and Resource Management, Brisbane.
Queensland Herbarium (2011). Specimen label information. Queensland Herbarium. Accessed 27/02/2012.
Wilson, K.L. (1991). Systematic studies in Cyperus section Pinnati (Cyperaceae). Telopea 4 (3): 480.
Wilson, K.L. (2008). Cyperus clarus, in PlantNet: New South Wales Flora Online. National Herbarium of New South Wales. Accessed 30/09/2008.
Profile author
Ronald Booth (19/07/2012)

Other resources

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
20 May 2024