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Western Australian Studies
Noel McFarland (1971-1978)
BACKYARD 6 — GERALDTON, WEST AUSTRALIA

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HOWATHARRA: INTERPRETATION of the SPREADSHEET COLUMNS
DOWNLOAD SPECIES LIST IN SPREADSHEET FORMAT :   HowatharraPlants-03-01-2013.xls

NOTE: The plant names on the spread-sheets are first arranged alphabetically by FAMILY (see Col.4), and then alphabetically by genus within each family (see Col.6), followed directly by every species recorded for each genus (see Col.7). To use the plant-index (spreadsheets) quickly and effectively, go first to Col.4 (FAMILY), and then look over to Col.6 to find the genus, then to Col.7 for the species. Since many families have been recently "re-shuffled" (taxonomically) in various ways, there is some cross-referencing to well-known older family placements included in Cols. 4 and 5. Suggestion: If you don't know your major plant families (and their various recent changes), then go to Wikipedia and FloraBase to learn about the changes that are taking place (and will continue to do so, as our knowledge of taxonomic relationships grows steadily more sophisticated)....
Six of the column-headers employed in the INDEX TO HOWATHARRA PLANTS (i.e., the spreadsheets) are self-explanatory. But where they are not, the details are given below:

COLUMN 1: The first column (at far left side of spreadsheet), provides a running total of the number of plant species documented for Howatharra Hill Reserve between 1971-1978, which had reached about 340 species by late 1978. Most of the names employed here are based on the several hundred specimens which I collected and/or photographed, somewhere on the original 106 acres of the core reserve (Zones 1-10), with the welcome addition of about 60 more species separately identified by Alex George during his survey nearby, but outside of the core reserve as it was at the time (Sep. 1977). These additional records (AG, in Col.18) all came from the adjacent 90 acres of Crown Grant 3 ("NW. Block", in Col.19), and/or the 400-acre parcel in the SE. corner of Victoria Location 2862 ("NE. Block"), which nearby blocks were later sold to the W.A. Dept. of Conservation & Land Management (C.A.L.M.), and were then added to our core reserve, after their purchase from the original owner, Mr. Cliff Royce of "Windermere". All of the AG. records are here included, as a part of the species-count for Howatharra Hill Reserve, which brings the total to about 400 species (to the end of 1978).
COLUMN 2 contains only the letter "P" where applicable. This implies that photographs (from 35 mm colour slides) were made of the living plants, growing in the habitat, at some time between 1971-78. Only the best of these have been scanned for the photo gallery. The photos can be seen on the web in the Howatharra Plant Species List, which is a condensed version of the spreadsheet list with links to the photos. Click on the name of the genus in the Howatharra Plant Species List to see the photos. A plus (+) after the "P" implies that more than one photo of the same species will be found in the gallery. (In such cases, the same number from Col.1 is repeated with every gallery-image that represents the same species.) A sampling of 207 spp. (slightly over half of the total recorded) can now be viewed in the gallery; this leaves about 193 of the recorded species (48%) still in need of photographic documentation at Howatharra Hill Reserve. [Can anyone contribute images from Howatharra that would help to fill in any of the blanks in Col.2??] NOTE: As an aid to reading the wide spreadsheets, both Cols. 1 and 2 have been repeated (side-by-side) three more times across the pages.
COLUMN 5: In addition to giving the family common name, this column occasionally includes, inside flat brackets [ ], an "advance-reminder" to look at the Conservation Priority [see Col. 22] of every species so noted by the W.A. Herbarium (2010). These notations only involve 13 out of the total of 400 species here listed for the reserve (1971-1978). (See further discussion of the endangered spp. under Col. 22.) There may be others still needing to be listed, or not yet recognized as falling into the "endangered" category? More extensive botanical investigations are needed in the Howatharra district. Bright idea(?): Any local rarities, known to be growing only outside the boundaries of the reserve, could perhaps be brought in by seed, in future attempts to establish them at various suitable disturbed (roadside or firebreak) locations inside the reserve boundaries, if such sites still exist (?)....
COLUMN 6 + 7: Please heed my use of "sp." or the "?", wherever these appear on the spreadsheets or in the photo gallery! These partial names are only tentative attempts at identification, which could not be taken any further at the time of collection or photography. Perhaps they will be clarified some day, by future botanical studies in the district(?) However, keep in mind that these present website records (involving all of the species numbers from 1 to 400) date back to more than 3 decades ago.... Certain local changes, in the composition of the native vegetation, may have occurred -- particularly if any fires have swept the locality since 1978(??) Or, local climate-change effects may be evolving(?).... If the citation states "sp." (with no "?") it means that I am reasonably sure of my generic placement for the entity, but cannot suggest a specific name with any certainty. If there is a "?" following the "sp.", it implies that I am not even sure of the generic placement, but whatever name appears there was my best guess at the time! (Obviously, more collecting will be needed to clarify some of these names)....
COLUMN 12 reports the flower (fl.) colours, as I recall them from more than 30 years ago.... Don't take this too seriously, although most of them should be fairly accurate, and might be of some use to future botanists studying the locality. Where lacking any photos, some indication of the living flower colour is certainly better than nothing!.... [See separate page for an explanation of the colour-abbreviations used. And, see also a summary at the top of p.12, in the 1977 Howatharra Reserve booklet (pdf 2.8M).]
COLUMN 13 reveals an "X" for every recorded species of plant that is known (or thought) to be introduced or naturalized in the Howatharra locality -- not originally native there (a total of 38 spp.or close to 10% of the 400 spp. recorded). These "alien" spp. include all entries under the families Brassicaceae, Caryophyllaceae, Lythraceae, Plantaginaceae, Primulaceae, and Scrophulariaceae, along with a handful of species from various other families, especially the Asteraceae and Poaceae (see p.11 in the 1977 booklet), although the majority of spp. in the latter two families are indeed native to this locality. Some of these "weedy" introduced plants are discussed in the book, Weeds of Western Australia by G.R.W. Meadly, Dept. of Agric., W. Aust. (1965); in particular, see pages 77-83 (Brassicaceae) and 120-122 (Boraginaceae).
COLUMN 14 gives a single letter as an abundance-rating (A,B,C or D) for the species, based on its (observed) occurrence on the reserve during the 1970's, and with reference only to the original "core" area of the reserve (Zones 1-10). If I don't recall, then nothing is shown in this column! A+ = extremely abundant, sometimes dominating large areas of the habitat; A = generally abundant and widespread throughout much of the reserve; B = of moderate abundance (somewhere between abundant and scarce); C = scarce; D= rare or very scarce -- no more than 1 or 2 individuals were known to be growing on the reserve at the time of these studies. If there is a plus sign [+] after the "B", this implies tending toward abundant, whereas a minus [-] after the "B" implies the opposite (tending toward scarce). If the letter is enclosed in parentheses, it implies that the species was more-or-less restricted to certain limited or very specific locations or "colonies" within the general habitat (usually based on soil-type or exposure, etc.), but it was not uniformly widespread or scattered throughout.
COLUMN 15 gives my original collection-number (NM + 4 digits); the Howatharra Reserve series started with "NM.1000", to launch the 1971-78 collections. These numbers usually imply that actual specimens were collected and pressed, with full data -- often including reference to one or more of the ten designated "Zones" within the 106 acres of the original core reserve (see MAP). Pressed dry specimens of (more of) these code-numbered collections were long ago given to Paul Wilson ("PW") at the W.A.H., in exchange for the numerous identifications that he was able to provide at the time of these studies; the determinations from PW form the "backbone" of this present plant-list, and its accompanying photo gallery (see Col.17).... However, many changes or shifts, at family and generic levels, have taken place in the decades since the 1970's, and these are now (mostly) reflected in the present Howatharra listings at this website, which closely follow the W.A.Herbarium's "FloraBase" for up-to-date taxonomic guidance. Some cross-references, to certain old or familiar family names (which are in many existing books and were still in wide use until recently) are included here, simply for the edification of those who may wonder whatever became of those earlier names! If "s.n." appears instead of a 4-digit "NM.-number", this implies that no number got attached to that specimen when I pressed it (sans numero = without number).
COLUMN 16 reveals the accession-number applied to every specimen that was entered into the collections of the W.A.Herbarium in PERTH. In the case of my donations from Howatharra (1971-78), there were sometimes several separate specimens of the same species, and each one was later assigned its own PERTH-number. But only one of these numbers will be found in Col.16, in any instance of multiple collections of the same entity. If the Perth-number is missing altogether, this implies that no (McFarland) specimens of that plant ever found their way to the W.A. Herbarium. A dotted line across Col.16 implies that no specimens of that entity were collected on the reserve during the 1970's; therefore, none went to the W.A.H. (thus no "Perth-number")! Efforts could be made in the future to eliminate these "blanks", via more collecting and photography, if circumstances ever permit.... (Is there anyone living in the Geraldton region who might feel inclined to tackle this??)
COLUMN 17: Determinations by ("det. by") -- this column reveals mostly two-letter abbreviations for the name(s) of the person(s) who kindly provided identifications of the plants: AG = Alex George, AW = Arthur Weston, BM = Bruce Maslin, GK = Greg Keighery, NM = Noel McFarland, PW = Paul Wilson; WAH = Staff, W.Aust. Herbarium, Perth. Many of these names have been further confirmed, or later corrected and updated, by various taxonomists at the W.A.Herbarium, based on my pressed specimens lodged there in the 1970's. "WAH" only implies that "someone" on the herbarium staff (or perhaps a visiting taxonomist?) applied the name that I'm currently using here, but that I am not aware of the identities of these individuals.... So, I will take this opportunity to thank these various (unidentified) taxonomists! Special thanks are also due to Susan Carroll of the WAH, for recently providing me with detailed lists (including revised name-updates) of all of my past donations to the WAH.
COLUMN 18 gives a 2-letter abbreviation for the name of the observer (and/or collector). In the case of "AG" (Alex George), I do not know which of his Sep.1977 records were based on sightings alone, or may have included actual collected specimens(?) -- hence the column heading of "Observer" (Obs.).... In the case of "NM" (Noel McFarland), most of those that were collected will appear as a 4-digit collection-number in Col.15. Photographs were also made of the majority of these code-numbered species (between 1971-78), and scans from those original 35 mm. slides can now be seen in the photo gallery. Click once or twice on any image to enlarge it).
COLUMN 19 names various Zones (1-10) of the original core reserve, and/or it may also state either "NE.BLK" or "NW.BLK", whichever is applicable. These latter entries refer to adjacent land and two (unpublished) lists in my possession, documenting a brief botanical survey of the area that was undertaken by Alex George (AG), in September of 1977.... Many of these AG-records confirmed the names attached to my earlier photos and collections, from the core area of the reserve (see Col's. 18 and 19), but about 60 of them proved to be new records, thus substantially increasing the total number of species then known from the Howatharra Gap locality. The NE. & NW. BLOCKS were later added to the core reserve, by decision of their owner (see Howatharra Reserve booklet (pdf 2.8M), p.9).
COLUMN 20 refers to an existing alphabetical list (available via the Internet), where any species labeled "CV" in this column will also be found on the list:"NATURE MAP SPECIES REPORT -- Shire of Chapman Valley" (hence the "CV"). I am not aware of the identities of the various contributors to the CV-list, which includes a vast array of both flora and fauna. Howatharra Hill Reserve is located near the southwestern end of Chapman Valley Shire, and is about 2.5 mi. east of the NW. Coastal Highway, which location is about 18 mi. (+ 30km.) NNE of the Geraldton city center. The correlation between the CV list and the Howatharra Hill Reserve list is about 80% at the species-level (318 spp.), with an additional + 82 spp. (20%) recorded from the reserve which do not as yet appear on the C.V. list. Therefore, these species all show up as blanks in Col.20.
COLUMN 21 lists the page-numbers, in our small introductory Howatharra Reserve booklet (pdf 2.8M), where the species (or family or genus) was briefly discussed or mentioned. Only 75, out of the 216 genera of Howatharra plants documented for the reserve, received even a brief mention in the booklet (see bottom of p.18). The booklet was printed by Geraldton Newspapers (1977). Feel free to make copies of this booklet for personal use if desired.
COLUMN 22 reveals the letter "P" plus a number (like P2), where applicable. These are the Conservation Priority indicators, used to designate the status of scarce or threatened species, which plants are currently of conservation concern in the State of Western Australia. The priority-levels run from P1 to P4, with P1 and P2 being the most threatened or endangered; P3 and P4, less so. Also in use are the letters "X" (presumed extinct), and "R" or "T" (extremely rare or very close to extinction); see Grevillea bracteosa ssp. howatharra (NM.1131) for an example of the latter. See also Col.5 (above) for further discussion of this topic.
Out of the total of 400 spp. of plants recorded from within the boundaries of the reserve (1971-1978), the following 13 spp. were noted (by the W.A. Dept. of Environment & Conservation, 2010) as having the following "conservation priorities" (P1-P4; R):
Fam. CYPERACEAE -- Schoenus badius, NM1336 (P2);
Fam. ERICACEAE -- Leucopogon sp., NM.1046 (P2);
Fam. FABACEAE -- Acacia guinettii, NM.1005 (P4);
Fam. MYRTACEAE -- Enekbatus bounites, NM.1084 (P2);
        Eucalyptus blaxellii, NM.1088 (P4);
        Thryptomene sp., NM.1080 (P3);
        Thryptomene sp., AG.14873 (P3);
        Verticordia densiflora, NM.1196 (P3);
        Verticordia penicillaris, NM.1083 (P4);
Fam. POLYGALACEAE -- Comesperma rhadinocarpum, NM.1184 (P2);
Fam. PROTEACEAE -- Grevillea bracteosa subsp. howatharra, NM.1131 (R); 
        Grevillea triloba, NM.1023 (P3);
Fam. RESTIONACEAE -- Desmocladus glomeratus, NM.1276 (P2).
FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT KNOW THE PLANT FAMILIES (Col.4), all families are listed alphabetically for every GENUS herein recorded for Howatharra Hill Reserve (up to Dec., 1978) in both the spreadsheet and the condensed Howatharra Plant Species List on the web. The spreadsheet contains the full data for each species and the taxonomic description from order to subspecies (including variations). Clickable generic (genus) names in the Howatharra Plant Species List link to all photos of that genus and contain comments and external links to other photos. The rightmost link to Florabase in the Howatharra Plant Species List may contain additional pictures of species and other information not found in the spreadsheet or photo gallery.
6A — Nemopterid & Moth Studies

NEMOPTERID Study

Moth Study (CARTHAEA)


6B — Sidetracked by Stapeliads!

Sidetracked by Stapeliads!


6C — Howatharra Hill Reserve

HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE

The EARLY HISTORY of HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE near GERALDTON, WESTERN AUSTRALIA (1968-1988)

The Concept of So-Called "DEVELOPMENT"

HOWATHARRA: INTERPRETATION of the SPREADSHEET COLUMNS

HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE: ABOUT the "ZONES" CREATED FOR DOCUMENTING LOCATIONS on the Reserve

HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE: FLOWER COLOURS CODED

HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE: Comments on the PHOTOS in the GALLERY

MORE PLANT DOCUMENTATION NEEDED at HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE!

HOWATHARRA HILL RESERVE: BOTANICAL PHOTO GALLERY

FINAL COMMENT: The Fruits of "Progress"