Western Australia mulga shrublands

Australia

A hot, dry ecoregion found in the centre-west of Western Australia. The area receives little rainfall throughout the year and is dominated by mulga trees; a type of acacia that is well-adapted to surviving hot climates with little moisture.

Western Australia mulga

Status

Protection
0 %

Status

Size

461,958 km²

UNESCO World Heritage Sites​

Nil

 

Background – CC Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported – Mark Marathon, 2013 / Map – CC Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported – Terpsichores, 2012

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: Good Riddance

Services

Waste Management: NT Recycling Solutions

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 Marble Gum (Eucalyptus gongylocarpa) and Smooth-barked Coolibah (Eucalyptus victrix) if you have space. 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 and tall shrubs including Rattle-pod Grevillea (Grevillea stenobotrya). 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 Spiny Fan-flower (Scaevola spinescens), Eremophila youngii and Magnificent Prostanthera (Prostanthera magnifica). These plants create 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 useful natives such as Creeping Saltbush (Atriplex semibaccata), Dampier Pea (Swainsona pterostylis) and Tangled Mulla Mulla (Ptilotus latifolius) to create dense swards of form and colour. To create habitat, consider installing a pond or bog-garden with native aquatic and riparian plants, log-piles for sheltering amphibians and reptiles and leave areas of leaf-litter for important insects.

Learn

A large, dry area of open plains and low hills. The geology of the Eastern Australia mulga shrublands is very old and stable with poor soils and a network of ancient river systems often forming lakes and billabongs in wetter periods. The area is dominated by the Mulga; a species of dome-shaped acacia (or wattle) that thrives in the region’s pool, sandstone or claystone soils. The plant is so common that it is regarded as a keystone species creating swathes of plant communities that form characteristic habitats for some of the Mulga Lands’ most iconic wildlife. From bilbies to parrots and sleek snakes to bounding Western Grey Kangaroos, this region contains some of the richest protected areas in Queensland and New South Wales, many of which also look after significant heritage of Indigenous Peoples.

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

A large expanse of ancient sandstones and claystones deposited when a large inland sea occupied this area about 100 million years ago

Climate

Arid

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.
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.

Princess Parrot
(Polytelis alexandrae)

Brush-tailed Mulgara
(Dasycercus blythi)

Australian Bustard
(Ardeotis australis)

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.

Crescent Nail-tail Wallaby
(Onychogalea lunata)

Brush-tailed Mulgara
(Dasycercus blythi)

Australian Bustard
(Ardeotis australis)

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

Mulga - a plant of incredible adaptability. From South Australia through Western Australia and into Queensland, this species is a keystone plant that dominates about 20% of arid mainland Australia's plant communities. It supports so many species, from rare native flora to nomadic honeyeaters.

Life-support Systems​

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