Overview

 Senecio lautusSenecio lautus

Photo: Bill New [NCSSA 2006]

Grassy ecosystems in the Eastern Mount Lofty Ranges are under threat and are extremely vulnerable to degrading influences through inappropriate management. However this region offers huge scope to promote grassy ecosystem recognition, protection and management.

Grassy ecosystems can be recognised by perennial native grass tussocks and scattered groups of trees and patches of shrubs. They can support a large diversity of herbaceous plants such as lilies and orchids, including rare and threatened species of flora and fauna. They provide land management benefits of soil and water quality protection and offer productive, low input pastures with appropriate time managed grazing.

Burning Issues- Grassy Ecosystem Management and Fire

Australia's vegetation has evolved with fire over recent and geological time where the combination of fire interval, intensity, timing and species response has created the grassy ecosystems of the Eastern Mount Lofty Ranges. Having an understorey dominated by grasses, seasonal herbaceous species and few woody shrubs.

Project Photos

 cymbopogon_ambiguus_callingtonhill1_150x200   stackhousia_monogyna_200x149

  Cymbopogon ambiguus 
  Photo: Bill New [NCSSA 2006]

  Stackhousia monogyna
  Photo: Bill New [NCSSA 2006]

I Spy - Grassy Ecosystem Remnants

Remnants of grassy ecosystems can generally be recognised by perennial native grass tussocks, moss & lichen cover between grassy tussocks and annual herbs, lilies and orchids. Groups of tree and shrub patches may be noticeable however these will be scattered in the landscape.

Remnants are visible in the landscape with varying levels of degradation. On cropping land the broad cropped areas generally have no grassland species present. However grassy ecosystem species may possibly be retained on rocky patches, steep areas and creek lines.