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Beenakia dacostae D.A. Reid

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Scientific name
Beenakia dacostae
Author
D.A. Reid
Common names
Beenak Long Tooth
IUCN Specialist Group
Mushroom, Bracket and Puffball
Kingdom
Fungi
Phylum
Basidiomycota
Class
Agaricomycetes
Order
Gomphales
Family
Clavariadelphaceae
Assessment status
Published
Assessment date
2019-07-25
IUCN Red List Category
NT
Assessors
May, T., Leonard, P.L. & Cooper, J.A.
Reviewers
Dahlberg, A.

Assessment Notes

The content on this page is fetched from The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species: https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/154843178/154843191

Justification

Beenakia dacostae is endemic to Australasia, where it is found in Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia. It is a assumed to be a saprotrophic fungus occurring on dead organic matter such as at the base of tree ferns in cool temperate beech forest  and also in wet eucalypt forest.

There have been a total of 122 recorded sightings of this species in Australasia. The species is a target of the Australian Fungimap scheme and and focus of surveys for rare fungi in Victoria. There are large areas of suitable habitat where the fungus has not been recorded (particularly in Australia). The total number of sites may approach 1000 sites giving a a population estimate of 10,000 mature individuals. The population is considered stable in New Zealand, with some decline in New Caledonia due to habitat loss and potentially with some small decline within Australia during the last two decades. Overall, the suspected ongoing decline could be in the order of 5-10% over the next two decades.

Therefore, the species is assessed as Near Threatened as it nearly meets Vulnerable C1 due to small and declining population.

Taxonomic notes

Beenakia dacostae is a distinctive species, described in 1955. It is recognisable in the field by the relatively soft sporing bodies, pale pileus, and decurrent, olive-brown spines.

Geographic range

This species is endemic to Australasia: it is found in Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia. In Australia it occurs mainly in Tasmania and Victoria with one isolated occurrence in northeast New South Wales. In New Zealand it occurs in the North and South Island.

Population and Trends

There have been a total of 122 recorded sightings of this species in Australasia. In Australia there have been 46 sightings in Tasmania, 30 in Victoria and one in New South Wales. In New Zealand there have been 40 sightings. The species has been observed in New Caledonia, where it appears to be rare (6 sightings).

There are large areas of suitable habitat where the fungus has not been recorded (particularly in Australia), and so 1000 sites is thought to be a reasonable estimate for the total number of sites i.e. multiplying the number of known sites by approximately 10 to account for the unrecorded ones. At a given site there is no information as to how many patches might be expected, but we here assume 2 functional individuals per site. Assuming 5 mature individuals for each functional individual, gives a population estimate of 10,000.

The population size is considered stable in New Zealand, with some decline in New Caledonia due to habitat loss and potentially with some small decline within Australia during the last two decades. Overall, the suspected ongoing decline could be in the order of 5-10% over the next two decades.

Population Trend: decreasing


Habitat and Ecology

Beenakia dacostae is a assumed to be saprotrophic fungus occurring on dead organic matter such as at the base of tree ferns. Fruit-bodies are sometimes found in dry, shaded spots beneath very large fallen logs. Its is possible that the species is confined to beech. It is found predominantly in wetter forests including cool temperate beech forest in Australia, New Zealand and New Caledonia and in Australia also in wet eucalypt forest. In New Caledonia, is associated with Nothofagus. In New Zealand, its occurrence appears to be associated to old-growth trees.

Threats

Overall in New Zealand there is no evidence of habitat decline as all the known sites are in protected sites. In New Caledonia the habitat is threatened by increased fire frequency and feral animals browsing of seedlings. In Australia, the cool temperate rainforest is reasonably well protected. However, climate change is leading an increased fire frequency and intensity that can lead to change the vegetation from rainforest to eucalypt forest. Where there are small pockets of rainforest, such as in Victoria and New South Wales it is likely that some rainforest will disappear. Some of the occurrences are in old-growth, tall eucalypt forest that is converted to silviculture forest.

Use and Trade

The species is not utilized.

Source and Citation

May, T., Leonard, P.L. & Cooper, J.A. 2019. Beenakia dacostae. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species 2019: e.T154843178A154843191. https://dx.doi.org/10.2305/IUCN.UK.2019-3.RLTS.T154843178A154843191.en .Downloaded on 30 January 2021

Country occurrence