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Two fireweeds back from the dead: the rediscovery of Senecio longipilus and Senecio extensus from the Tasmanian Central Highlands

Senecio longipilus and Senecio extensus were rediscovered from the Tasmanian Central Highlands in late December 2019 and early January 2020, respectively. The rediscovery of S. longipilus resulted from an NBES development assessment, which precipitated a separate search for S. extensus with industry colleague Mark Wapstra.

Within Tasmania, Senecio longipilus was previously known only from a collection near Perth on the South Esk River (mid to late 1800s) and near Kingston in 1929, and Senecio extensus only from a single collection at Mackenzie Tiers from 1984.

Both species were immediately nominated for listing on the Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995 (both previously unlisted), with S. longipilus accepted for listing as vulnerable and S. extensus as endangered.

A subsequent publication detailing the rediscoveries and collection histories has been accepted and is in press with the Tasmanian Naturalist (Wapstra, Daniels and White, 2021).