Spider Orchids return to Castlemaine
Friday 5 October, 2012
The Castlemaine Spider Orchid is once again blooming this spring in the Castlemaine area, thanks to the combined efforts of two Victorian Government agencies and local community groups. This threatened orchid is about 25cm tall, and produces one or two deep red flowers on a yellow-green, hairy stalk. It can be found flowering in September to October in Box Ironbark forest, mostly amongst Stringy Bark and Box trees.
After many years of attempting to grow this species at the Royal Botanic Gardens and the Horsham Orchid propagation facility, there was finally success, when its seedlings were germinated at the Horsham facility by Dr Noushka Reiter last year.
In June this year the Department of Sustainability and Environment (DSE), Parks Victoria and some enthusiastic local community members, reintroduced 60 seedlings of this rare Spider Orchid back into two parks in the Castlemaine area.
DSE Biodiversity Officer Julie Whitfield said, “This was the first ever reintroduction of this species and it’s hoped that it will be the first of many more to come”.
“The aim is to establish new populations of the Castlemaine Spider Orchid in many different sites around the district to increase the number of them growing in the wild,” Ms Whitfield said.
This project was funded by the North Central Catchment Management Authority and the on ground preparation was done by Parks Victoria and local community groups.
Parks Victoria Ranger Noel Muller says a lot of work has gone into bringing the orchids back to the area. “Protective fencing has been put around all the new plantings to keep grazing animals out and that’s already showing results as the orchid plants are looking really good.”
The Castlemaine Spider Orchid project is part of the DSE Threatened Orchid recovery program for the North West Region, which includes the management and reintroduction of numerous threatened orchids for the Central Goldfields area.
The Victorian Government has a responsibility under the Wildlife Act 1975 and the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 to protect threatened species. These animals and plants contribute significantly to the biodiversity of their ecosystems. The knowledge acquired about these species helps to then take the on-ground steps needed to ensure their survival.
5 Apr 2014 12:00am - 30 Apr 2014 12:00am
Award winning artist Minela Krupic is bringing her poignant and thought-provoking first solo exhibition Palimpsest to Point Nepean National Park. The Palimpsest exhibition explores the stories of migrants quarantined at Point Nepean through collected images of them. A palimpsest is a manuscript from which the text has been scraped or…
27 Apr 2014
Brimbank Park Running Festival will be held on the 27 April at Brimbank Park. This event has a specific focus on an outdoor healthy lifestyle and is inclusive of all levels and ages with a distance to suit everyone. You may choose to walk, run or a bit of both.…
27 Apr 2014 2:30pm-4:30pm
The Melbourne Tramways Band will be holding their "Spirit of Anzac" recitial at the open air bandstand in Wattle Park in Burwood (weather permitting). Mel 60 J3. Bring your own rug or chair. If a concert is to be cancelled, we will advise Parks Victoria by midday and you may…
30 Apr 2014 9:00am - 1 May 2014 7:30pm
The ideal conservation holiday for those looking for a physical challenge amongst some of the state's most picturesque surroundings. You will make a direct contribution to critical environmental science and park management, learn about the native species and the monitoring program, and experience the beautiful landscape of Point Nepean.