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Page 1 of 3

Impact Assessment Record

Scientific Name: Acacia catechu Common name: black cutch, cutch tree


QUESTION

COMMENTS

RATING

CONFIDENCE

Social

1. Restrict human

access?


Trees range from 3 to 15 metres with average height when fully grown between 10 to 15 metres (CABI 2005). Trees have a light feathery crown. Forms ‘dense impenetrable stands and the sharp thorns .. can impede the movement and mustering of stock’. When fully grown, stems up to 30cm diameter (CRC for Australian Weed Management 2003). As common on riverbanks and watersheds, plant would be a major impediment to access waterways.

H

MH

2. Reduce tourism?

As the weed can be found on riverbanks and watersheds, it is possible that some recreational uses may be affected eg. swimming, fishing, boating (World Agroforestry Centre 2005).

MH

MH

3. Injurious to people?

The branchlets have ‘twin hooked prickles’. These prickles are present throughout the year (CABI 2005).

H

MH

4. Damage to cultural

sites?


Not likely that the plant would do any structural damage but due to size and potential to spread (CABI 2005), would have moderate visual effect.

ML

MH

Abiotic

5. Impact flow?

Terrestrial species (CABI 2005).

L

MH

6. Impact water quality?

Terrestrial species (CABI 2005).

L

MH

7. Increase soil erosion?

‘..apart from checking soil erosion. On steep slopes, its roots bind the soil and prevent landslides or excessive erosion’. Tree has a strong primary root (up to 2 metres deep) which is long and wiry with lateral short, fibrous roots (CABI 2005). Does not replace ground cover so unlikely to leave ground exposed. Low probability of large scale soil movement.

L

MH

8. Reduce biomass?

As the plant likes open woodlands and grasslands with a tendency to invade degraded areas (CRC for Australian Weed Management 2003), biomass may increase.

L

M

9. Change fire regime?

Deciduous tree. Although ‘the wood is excellent firewood’, and would burn well once ignited there is nothing to indicate that the tree would change the frequency or intensity of fires (CABI 2005). In Australia, the known distribution of Acacia catechu is sparse so wouldn’t contribute to either intensity or frequency.

L

MH

Community Habitat

10. Impact on composition
(a) high value EVC

Potential distribution of Acacia catechu excludes Victoria. No impact on EVCs in Victoria.

L

H

  1. medium value EVC

Potential distribution of Acacia catechu excludes Victoria. No impact on EVCs in Victoria.

L

H

  1. low value EVC

Potential distribution of Acacia catechu excludes Victoria. No impact on EVCs in Victoria.

L

H

11. Impact on structure?

Found with other dry deciduous species, and grasses. Can occur in both open grasslands and also within dry forests (CABI 2005). ‘Occurs as a weedy shrub on overgrazed grasslands’ (Parsons & Cuthbertson 2001). Therefore, it

L

MH

Page 2 of 3

Impact Assessment Record



Scientific Name: Acacia catechu Common name: black cutch, cutch tree


QUESTION

COMMENTS

RATING

CONFIDENCE




may exclude understorey species eg grasses. Will affect only one of the stratum.







  1. Effect on threatened flora?

The potential for Acacia catechu to establish and naturalise in Victoria is highly unlikely due to ecoclimatic limitations. No impact on threatened flora in Victoria.

L

H

Fauna

  1. Effect on threatened fauna?

The potential for Acacia catechu to establish and naturalise in Victoria is highly unlikely due to ecoclimatic limitations. No impact on threatened fauna in Victoria.

L

H

  1. Effect on non- threatened fauna?

‘The sharp thorns .. can impede the movement and mustering of stock’ (CRC for Australian Weed Management 2003). In agricultural situations the plant may be a problem but in natural situations may not hinder or affect fauna eg access to water, but may have a minor effect.

ML

M

  1. Benefits fauna?

In India it is known to be ‘an excellent source of food for wildlife’ (CABI 2005). May provide an alternate food source for native fauna.

ML

MH

  1. Injurious to fauna?

‘The bark is toxic and contains an alkaloid’ (CABI 2005). However, it is a common fodder species within its native range for both wild and domesticated animals so toxicity likely to have little effect. Forms ‘dense impenetrable stands and the sharp thorns .. can impede the movement and mustering of stock’ (CRC for Australian Weed Management 2003).

ML

MH

Pest Animal

  1. Food source to pests?

Is a useful fodder species.. browsed by cattle, rhinoceros, deer and elephants’. Rodents are also reported to damage the tree’ (CABI 2005). May supply food for one or more minor pest spp.

ML

MH

  1. Provides harbor?

No evidence in CABI (2005) that the weed provides harbour for pest spp.

L

MH

Agriculture










  1. Impact yield?

Dense patches ‘impede stock movement and access to other pasture plants’ (Parsons & Cuthbertson 2001). Could impact stock access to water with potential to have minor impact on quantity of produce.

ML

MH

  1. Impact quality?

Not known to effect quality of produce.

L

MH

  1. Affect land value?

No documented evidence that weed would affect land value.

L

MH

  1. Change land use?

No evidence to suggest that the weed would cause a change in priority of land use.

L

MH

  1. Increase harvest costs?

No evidence to suggest that the weed would increase the cost of harvest.

L

MH

Disease host/vector?

Not a known host or vector for diseases of agriculture.

L

MH

Page 3 of 3

Impact Assessment Record

Scientific Name: Acacia catechu Common name: black cutch, cutch tree

References cited:

CAB International 2005, Acacia catechu, Forestry Compendium, CAB International, Wallingford, viewed: 04 Nov 2005, http://www.cabicompendium.org/fc/datasheet.asp?CCODE=ACA CA&COUNTRY=0

CRC for Australian Weed Management 2003, Weed management guide, cutch tree (Acacia catechu), Department of Environment and Heritage, Canberra, viewed: 04 Nov 2005, http://www.deh.gov.au/biodiversity/invasive/publications/pubs/a-catechu.pdf

Parsons, W.T. & Cuthbertson, E. G. 2001, Noxious weeds of Australia, 2nd edn, CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood.

World Agroforestry Centre 2005, Species identity: Acacia catechu, Agroforestree Database, World Agroforestry Centre, viewed: 04 Nov 2005, http://www.worldagroforestry.org/Sites/TreeDBS/aft.asp



Revisions

Date Revised by Revision


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