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Threatened species

Each one of Queensland's native plants (flora) and animals (fauna) is a unique and valuable part of the state's rich biodiversity. Different types of plants and animals are known as ‘species’.

Some plant and animal species are declining in numbers and are at risk of extinction due to a range of threatening processes. Under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 there are currently 934 species (206 animals and 728 plants) listed as threatened (extinct in the wild, endangered or vulnerable) in Queensland. Of these species, about 400 are listed as threatened nationally under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

What is a threatened species

(1) granite boronia, Photo EHP (2) northern bettong, Photo EHP (3) Richmond birdwing butterfly, Photo I.Gynther

(1) granite boronia, Photo EHP (2) northern bettong, Photo EHP (3) Richmond birdwing butterfly, Photo I.Gynther

A threatened species is any plant or animal species that is at risk of extinction. Different categories are allocated to threatened species depending on the degree of risk. These categories are based on a number of criteria including, trends in population size, health and distribution.

In Queensland threatened species are listed under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 in the following categories: 

Species can also be classed as near threatened, if they are at risk of becoming threatened in the near future.

Anyone can nominate a species for listing or delisting as threatened under the Nature Conservation Act 1992. Find out more about the species listing process for Queensland. Find out more about nationally threatened species listed under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

Species which are threatened

The Nature Conservation (Wildlife) Regulation 2006 (PDF) lists species that are classed as threatened or near threatened in Queensland.

The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, 1999 (EPBC Act) lists species that are threatened nationally.

Find out more about Queensland's threatened species in the A-Z of animals species profiles.

Find out more about nationally threatened species in the Species Profile and Threats Database.

Why species become threatened

There are many threats that impact on species and contribute to their risk of extinction. Threats can be human-induced such as clearing of habitat, pollution, overharvesting, introduced species, or random natural events such as cyclones, floods, droughts, fire.

A scientific review of the impacts of land clearing on threatened species in Queensland 2017 (PDF, 5.8M), provides evidence that land clearing causes species death and habitat loss, exacerbates other threatening processes, and reduces the resilience of threatened species to survive future challenges such as climate change.

Find out more about the threats impacting on native species

What is being done to help threatened species

The Department of Environment and Heritage Protection has responsibility for managing and conserving threatened species in Queensland via the Nature Conservation Act 1992. However, a range of different user groups and individuals within all levels of government, the community and industry sectors undertake activities relating to threatened species.

The department’s Threatened Species Unit manages, facilitates and coordinates activities relating to the conservation and protection of threatened flora and fauna in Queensland.

Other ways threatened species are being helped by the Queensland Government include:  

Use the map to explore interesting threatened species across the different bioregions of Queensland and learn more about how you can get involved in species conservation.
Map of Queensland showing the different bioregions Brigalow BeltBrigalow BeltChannel CountryChannel CountryCentral QueenslandCentral QueenslandCentral QueenslandCape York PeninsulaCape York PeninsulaDesert UplandsDesert UplandsEinasleigh UplandsEinasleigh UplandsGulf PlainsGulf PlainsMitchell Grass DownsMitchell Grass DownsMulga LandsMulga LandsNew England TablelandNew England TablelandNorthwest HighlandsNorthwest HighlandsSoutheast QueenslandSoutheast QueenslandWet TropicsWet Tropics


Related information

Last updated
21 July 2017