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Posidonia ostenfeldii

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Taxonomy [top]

Kingdom Phylum Class Order Family
PLANTAE TRACHEOPHYTA LILIOPSIDA NAJADALES POSIDONIACEAE

Scientific Name: Posidonia ostenfeldii
Species Authority: Hartog
Common Name(s):
English Species code: Pf
Taxonomic Notes: This species is part of the P. ostenfeldii complex (Kuo and Cambridge 1984). This species is currently undergoing taxonomic review.

Assessment Information [top]

Red List Category & Criteria: Least Concern ver 3.1
Year Published: 2010
Date Assessed: 2007-10-23
Assessor(s): Short, F.T., Carruthers, T.J.R., Waycott, M., Kendrick, G.A., Fourqurean, J.W., Callabine, A., Kenworthy, W.J. & Dennison, W.C.
Reviewer(s): Livingstone, S., Harwell, H. & Carpenter, K.E.
Justification:
This is a very rare species and is only found in a small number of areas. There is very little information known about it. This species is rare and there are no known major threats, although localized threats exist. This species is listed as Least Concern. Research on the taxonomy, ecology and distribution of this species is recommended.

Geographic Range [top]

Range Description: Posidonia ostenfeldii is endemic to Western Australia from Cape Leeuwin to the western edge of the Great Australian Bight.
Countries:
Native:
Australia (Western Australia)
FAO Marine Fishing Areas:
Native:
Indian Ocean – eastern
Range Map: Click here to open the map viewer and explore range.

Population [top]

Population: Posidonia ostenfeldii is rare locally and regionally. There are few collections, and it has been rarely observed in the field. Although rare, this species has been recently found at King George Sound, Albany, Wyllie Bay, Esperance (G. Kendrick pers. comm. 2009).
Population Trend: Unknown

Habitat and Ecology [top]

Habitat and Ecology: This is a highly distinctive Posidonia species and is the only terete Posidonia, with both vegetative and reproductive differences from the other members of the P. ostenfeldii complex. It is currently being studied for genetic separation by Drs. Kathryn McMahon and Michelle Waycott (G. Kendrick pers. comm. 2009).

This is an open ocean, deep water, high energy species. The P. ostenfeldii complex typically form patchy meadows with mixed species in open ocean or rough water sublittoral habitats (Cambridge 1975). They are characterised by their long, thick, leathery leaves and long leaf sheaths that are deeply buried. These characters appear to be associated with strong wave movement and mobile sand substratum typical of the environments in which they are found (Kuo and Cambridge 1984). This species can withstand swell and sediment movement offshore from Esperance to west of Albany.

Campey et al. (2000)  implies that vegetative morphological characters, upon which five species of the P. ostenfeldii complex were erected, is not effective for the identification of species from multiple samples from any one location.
Systems: Marine

Threats [top]

Major Threat(s): There are no known major threats to this species, although localized threats include coastal development, dredging, pollution from eutrophication, aquaculture, an direct physical damage by recreational and commercial boating activities (Green and Short 2003).

Conservation Actions [top]

Conservation Actions: There are no species-specific conservation measures in place for this species, although it is protected in various Marine Protected Areas, in Fisheries Acts or in National or Marine Park Acts.

It is recommended that the whole P. ostenfeldii complex be reanalyzed and that further morphological and genetic work is carried out (Campey et al. 2000). Research on the taxonomy, ecology and distribution of this species is recommended.

Bibliography [top]

Cambridge, M.L. 1975. Seagrasses of south-western Australia with special reference to the ecology of Posidonia australis Hook f. in a polluted environment. Aquatic Botany 1: 149-161.

Campey, M.L., Waycott, M. and Kendrick, G.A. 2000. Re-evaluating species boundaries among members of the Posidonia ostenfeldii species complex (Posidoniaceae) - morphological and genetic variation. Aquatic Botany 66(1): 41-56.

Green, E.P. and Short, F.T. 2003. World Atlas of Seagrasses. University of California Press, Berkeley.

IUCN. 2010. IUCN Red List of Threatened Species (ver. 2010.3). Available at: http://www.iucnredlist.org. (Accessed: 2 September 2010).

Kuo, J. and Cambridge, M.L. 1984. A taxonomic study of the Posidonia ostenfeldii complex (Posidoniaceae) with descriptions of four new Australian seagrasses. Aquatic Botany 20: 267-95.


Citation: Short, F.T., Carruthers, T.J.R., Waycott, M., Kendrick, G.A., Fourqurean, J.W., Callabine, A., Kenworthy, W.J. & Dennison, W.C. 2010. Posidonia ostenfeldii. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Version 2014.2. <www.iucnredlist.org>. Downloaded on 02 September 2014.
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