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Germplasm Guidelines April update

Germplasm Guidelines April update

Updates for the third edition of the Germplasm Guidelines are going well, with reviewer comments recently addressed by chapter working groups. Thanks to all those involved in the review and writing process! External reviews will begin shortly. Production of the ‘Plant Treasures’ video series funded by The Ian Potter Foundation is underway, with producer Chantelle Doyle and videographer Michael Lawrence-Taylor engaged to help spread the key messages of the Germplasm Guidelines. The video series will include interviews with chapter authors and footage of ex situ conservation processes in action. Planning is also underway for the launch of the Guidelines at the virtual Australasian Seed Science Conference on 6-10 September 2021.

ANPC Workshops

ANPC Workshops

A backload of workshop enquiries from last year has resulted in a number of ANPC workshops and field days locked in for this financial year. There has already been one seed collection workshop delivered for Hay Landcare/ Riverina LLS in February with planned propagation, direct seeding and regeneration workshops to follow. There are also seven field walk plant identification and management workshops at various locations across far west NSW planned between Central and Western LLS over two weeks in May and another series proposed in August. Keep an eye out for these workshops which will be promoted as soon as we finalise times and locations.

Myrtle Rust – national Statement of Concern now open for signatures

Myrtle Rust – national Statement of Concern now open for signatures

A national meeting of more than 200 scientists and government, industry and community representatives has issued a Statement of Concern on Myrtle Rust, with a call for individuals and organisations to add their signatures. The Statement is directed to all Australian governments, and calls on them to endorse and fund a national action plan for this introduced plant disease.

In late March more than 200 scientists and government, industry and community representatives met in Ballina NSW to discuss the introduced plant disease Myrtle Rust, a growing threat to Australian native plants and ecosystems.  The ANPC has been active on Myrtle Rust since 2011, and was a partner in organising the symposium.

More than ten years after the arrival of Myrtle Rust in Australia, there is still no coordinated and funded national response.  In those years, the list of Australian species known to be capable of infection has grown to nearly 400 species.  Five species are known to be in catastrophic decline, including two that were, before 2010, common along the east coast but are now listed as Critically Endangered due to Myrtle Rust.  It is estimated that a further 40+ species are at high risk ‒ they all need urgent field assessment and germplasm conservation as a precursor to future recovery actions.

In the absence of an adequate national response by governments, the community of scientists and conservation practitioners active on the issue have evolved a National Action Plan for Myrtle Rust (www.apbsf.org.au, also at https://www.anpc.asn.au/myrtle-rust). This is a practical, science-based framework for the urgent actions needed to prevent extinctions, and to lay the basis for possible future recovery.  The National Action Plan is already shaping research and action priorities for some institutions and State agencies.

But the Action Plan remains unfunded, and without formal endorsement by any government agencies.

“We face irreversible damage to our natural heritage and a permanent loss of biological resources if action is not taken”, says Bob Makinson, ANPC’s representative on the Symposium organising group and a co-author of the Action Plan. “This other, silent pandemic needs a nationally coordinated response and a basic level of resourcing.  The Statement of Concern seeks to focus the attention of governments on this threat.  We need signatures from concerned people, and especially from organisations in the science, conservation, Indigenous, and natural resource management areas.  We ask all concerned individuals to bring the Statement to the attention of the peak committees of such organisations as soon as possible, and seek their endorsement of it.”

The Statement of Concern is open for signatures (organisational and individual) at https://www.apbsf.org.au/myrtle-rust/

Further information on Myrtle Rust is available at https://www.anpc.asn.au/myrtle-rust/

Orchid Conservation Symposium 22 and 23 June 2021

Orchid Conservation Symposium 22 and 23 June 2021

Orchid Conservation Symposium

The ANPC will be working with project partners to organise an orchid conservation symposium in 2021. This symposium to be held over two days will provide an online forum to increase awareness of the ecology and conservation of orchids amongst practitioners. It will also provide an opportunity to share the project’s results and promote networking among the orchid conservation community. The symposium is scheduled for 22 and 23 June 2021.

To receive updates on the Orchid Conservation Symposium please subscribe to the mailing list.

Register for the Symposium here

Keynote speakers:
Professor Steve Johnson, Research Chair, University of Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa

Professor Rod Peakall, Professor in Evolutionary Biology, The Australian National University, ACT, Australia

Presenters:

Ms Alyssa Weinstein, PhD candidate, The Australian National University, ACT, Australia
Dr Amy Hinsley, Senior Research Fellow, Oxford University, UK
Dr Belinda Davis, Research Scientist, Kings Park Science, Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions, WA, Australia
Dr Bronwyn Ayre, Research Officer, La Trobe University, Vic, Australia
Professor Celeste Linde, Professor, The Australian National University, ACT, Australia
Dr Jenny Guerin, Seed Research Officer, South Australian Seed Conservation Centre, Botanic Gardens of South Australia, SA, Australia
Dr Gunter Fischer, Head of Flora Conservation, Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden, Hong Kong
Dr Jenifer Wraith, EcoCommons Business/Scientific Analyst and User Support Officer, Griffith University, QLD, Australia
Mr Len Carrigan, Volunteer, Australian Native Orchids Society, Victoria, Vic, Australia
Mr Marc Freestone, PhD Candidate, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, The Australian National University, Vic, Australia
Dr Myles Menz, Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellow, Max Planck Institute, Germany
Dr Noushka Reiter, Senior Research Scientist, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, The Australian National University, Vic, Australia
Mr Richard Dimon, Research Assistant, Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Vic, Australia
Dr Russell Barrett, Systematic Botanist, Royal Botanic Gardens Sydney, NSW, Australia
Dr Ryan Phillips, Senior Lecturer in Ecology, La Trobe University, Vic, Australia
Mr Tobias Hayashi, PhD candidate, The Australian National University, ACT, Australia