Australian Systematic Botany Australian Systematic Botany Society
Taxonomy, biogeography and evolution of plants

Drosera × sidjamesii (Droseraceae): systematics and ecology of a natural hybrid from Western Australia

Allen Lowrie A and John G. Conran B C
+ Author Affiliations
- Author Affiliations

A 6 Glenn Place, Duncraig, WA 6023, Australia.

B Australian Centre for Evolutionary Biology and Biodiversity, Environmental Biology, School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, Darling Building DP312, University of Adelaide, SA 5005, Australia.

C Corresponding author. Email:

Australian Systematic Botany 20(1) 44-53
Submitted: 16 June 2004  Accepted: 28 November 2006   Published: 26 February 2007


The natural hybrid Drosera × sidjamesii Lowrie & Conran from Lake Gnangarra north of Perth, Western Australia is described and defined as a cross between D. nitidula Planch. subsp. omissa Marchant & Lowrie auct. non Diels and D. pulchella Lehm., between which it shows a high degree of intermediacy for almost all characters. Cytological examination of the hybrid and its parents confirms that the former at 2n = 46 is a combination of the 2n = 28 in D. nitidula subsp. omissa and 2n = 18 in D. pulchella. The hybrid grows along a narrow ecotone between the parental species, largely on sandy peat and along a presumed soil moisture/elevation gradient caused by the nearby lake. Nevertheless, within this ecotone the hybrid is significantly more frequent than either parental species, with D. pulchella mainly growing in peat soils closer to the lake and D. nitidula subsp. omissa on white sand further from the water. Field observations of morphotypes also suggest that the hybrid has arisen several times at the site, and that a limited number of plants at the site are becoming fertile and setting seed.


The Department of Conservation and Land Management (CALM) is thanked for permits to undertake scientific research into the Western Australian flora. The work done by the late Professor Sid James (Botany Department, The University of Western Australia) on meiotic chromosome counts for some taxa is gratefully acknowledged. This work was supported by a National Geographic Society grant #7242–02, and the discipline of Environmental Biology in the School of Earth and Environmental Sciences, The University of Adelaide is thanked for the provision of facilities.


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