Mistletoes of Western Australia

April 2023
More details
  • Publisher
    CSIRO Publishing
  • Published
    11th April 2023
  • ISBN 9781486316144
  • Language English
  • Pages 152 pp.
  • Size 6" x 9"
  • Images 151 color photos, 51 maps, 5 illus

Mistletoes are fascinating, diverse, colorful and ecologically important plants, found in most parts of Western Australia.

Mistletoes of Western Australia is a guide to their identification, ecology, conservation, biogeography and evolution, including how they cope with fire. The book explores the relevance of mistletoes to the biodiversity of the communities in which they live, and provides information on their hosts and simple identification keys to species. Each species is described in simple terms and illustrated with a photo of the species and a map of its known distribution in Western Australia.

Featuring seven genera and 42 species, this comprehensive illustrated guide will be essential for botanists, conservationists and anyone interested in Australian flora.


  • Provides keys to all seven genera and 42 species of Western Australian mistletoes.
  • Includes descriptions and images of all Western Australian taxa, with information on hosts and distribution maps for all taxa.
  • Covers many species that also occur in the Northern Territory.
  • Features chapters on mistletoe ecology and biology.


1: Introduction
2: Parasitic plants: an overview
3: Reproduction
4: Do mistletoes have roots?
5: Host variety
6: Do mistletoes mimic their hosts?
7: Fire and other threats
8: Biogeography of Western Australia’s mistletoes
9: The relevance of mistletoes
10: Keys to mistletoe families, genera and species in Western Australia
11: Species accounts

Checklist and broad distribution records of Western Australian mistletoes
References and further reading

Antony Start

Antony (Tony) Start is a Research Associate at the Western Australian Herbarium, specializing in mistletoes, and a former Western Australia National Parks manager. His interest in mistletoes started as a youth in Kenya and was rekindled when he realized their potential as indicators of areas with mild fire histories.

Kevin Thiele

Kevin Thiele is a botanical taxonomist who has worked with many groups of Australian plants including Banksia, Viola, Hibbertia and the family Rhamnaceae. He was the head of the Western Australian Herbarium for more than a decade.

Plants; native; identification; Australia