Murray-Darling woodlands and mallee

Australia

A wide and expansive depression of sedimentary plains and low hills dominated by open woodlands and mallee (small eucalypt trees).

Murray-Darling woodlands (1)

Status

Protection
0 %

Size

197,900 km²

 

Background – Dr Mark Nadir Runkovski, 2014 / Map – CC Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported – Hesperian, 2007

ACT
Help your Ecoregion
So what can you do to help your ecoregion? Below is a list to help you support your ecoregion, while also achieving life's everyday tasks. Don’t underestimate your power in doing good for nature!

PRODUCTS

Food and Homeware: Gracefully Green

Services

Pest Control: Green Pesty

At Home
Below is a list of actions you can easily take at home to minimise your impact on the ecoregion in which you live, and the rest of the planet too!
In your Garden
Below is a list of native plants and habitat creation tips you can use in your garden or on your property to give your ecoregion and its species a boost!

CANOPY LAYER

Plant a range of small, native mallee feature trees like March Mallee (Eucalyptus leptopyhlla), Lerp Mallee (Eucalyptus incrassata), White Mallee (Eucalyptus dumosa) and Yorrell (Eucalyptus gracilis). To create habitat, consider installation of nestboxes for native birds and creating hollows in old, dead tree limbs.

SUB-CANOPY LAYER

Plant native sub-canopy trees like the Drooping She-oak (Allocasuarina verticillata), the bright-yellow Grey Mulga (Acacia brachybotrya) and the almost bonsai-like Kangaroo Honey-myrtle (Melaleuca halmaturorum) in coastal areas. To create habitat, consider installation of nestboxes for native birds and creating tree hollows in old, dead tree limbs.

SHRUB LAYER

Plant native shrubs such as Creeping Boobialla (Myoporum parvifolium), Muntries (Kunzea pomifera), Fragrant Saltbush (Chenopodium parabolicum), Holly Grevillea (Grevillea ilicifolia) and Grevillea lavandulacea. These species are great for creating dense shrubby refugia and provide plenty of nectar for birds and mammals. To create habitat, consider installing insect hotels, compost-heaps and bird-baths in this layer.

GROUND LAYER

Plant colourful natives that bring in the pollinators, like Senecio lautus and Olearia pannosa. For a vivid colour-pallette, try Sturt's Desert Pea (Swainsona formosa), Round-leaved Pigface (Disphyma crassifolium), Sticky Goodenia (Goodenia varia), Long Purple-flag (Patersonia occidentalis) and Matted Bush-pea (Pultenaea pedunculata). To create habitat, consider installing a pond or bog-garden with native aquatic and riparian plants like Australian Waterbuttons (Cotula australis), Common Spike-rush (Eleocharis acuta) and Feather Spear-grass (Stipa elegantissima), log-piles for sheltering amphibians and reptiles and leave areas of leaf-litter for important insects.

Learn

With a rich biodiversity of native plants and a characteristically Mediterranean climate, the woodlands and mallee of the Murray-Darling basin area are a wealth of life. Due to their rich flora, the variety of woodland birds found in these areas is often very high, with many mixed flocks of both natives and migrants. In more open country, mallee-specialists like the aptly-named Malleefowl have evolved to survive hot, dry summers with little water. Fires are frequent in these areas and many of the ecoregions plants have evolved fire-triggered germination, meaning they only germinate after being burnt. 

Ecoregion Structure
The structure of the ecoregion is defined as the key living and non-living features characterising its ecosystems, and the differences between how these ecosystems are arranged. For example, layers of vegetation, geology, habitat features and landscapes.

Geology

An expansive area of sedimentary plains; the remains of a prehistoric great, shallow sea

Climate

Mediterranean

Iconic Landscapes

Native plant communities

Scenes by @blueringmedia
Ecoregion Composition
The composition of the ecoregion is defined as the biodiversity that inhabits its ecosystems, and the differences between this biodiversity. For example, communities, populations, species, subspecies and genetic traits.
Keystone Species​
Keystone species are those that have a disproportionately large effect on the ecosystems in which they live, relative to their natural abundance there. In other words, species with a really important role in the health of ecosystems.

Southern Hairy-nosed Wombat
(Lasiorhinus latifrons)

River Red Gum
(Eucalyptus camaldulensis)

Lerp Mallee
(Eucalyptus incrassata)

Flagship Species
Flagship species are those that are chosen by people to represent a wider conservation message, usually for a given place or social context, and as such often carry conservation messages for wider biodiversity.

Mallee Emu-wren
(Stipiturus mallee)

Southern Bell Frog
(Ranoidea raniformis)

Recently Extinct Species
All around the world, biodiversity is declining at a concerning rate. For some species it's already too late, and they have disappeared from the ecoregions they once called home. These are some examples of those lost species.

Kangaroo Island Emu
(Dromaius baudinianus)

Lord Howe Fantail
(Rhipidura cervina)

Lord Howe Thrush
(Turdus vinitinctus)

Ecoregion Function
The function of the ecoregion is defined as how its structural and compositional components all work together to form ecological relationships and processes which change over time through geological shifts and evolution by natural selection.

Keystone Relationships

Wombats are fantastic ecosystem engineers. They create complex, extensive burrows, turning over the soil instigating aeration and nutrient turnover. Their burrows also function as habitats for numerous ground-dwelling species such as snakes, geckos, crickets and even nesting birds.

Life-support Systems​

Biodiversity is fundamental to a healthy planet and thriving communities, but the world's species are under tremendous threat.