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The world’s biggest wild abalone fishery, which accounts for 25 percent of the global annual harvest, may be under threat from a destructive virus.

The ganglioneuritis virus has been detected in two abalone from waters off Tasmania and tests are under way to determine the extent of the threat.

The virus has already devastated the abalone industry in nearby Victorian waters.

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What do fungi and stonewash jeans have in common? What has a moss got to do with the Tyrolean iceman? What are the tallest mosses? What is a reindeer moss? How can lichens read pollution?

The answers to these questions and many more will be answered in a remarkable free touring exhibition, Hidden in Plain View: the forgotten flora, staged by the Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne which goes on display in Launceston in August.

Dr Teresa Lebel, one of the organisers, says the exhibition is about encouraging people to investigate the influence of the forgotten flora on their daily lives through curiosities, rarities, and everyday items, and gain an understanding of the importance of conserving the ‘often overlooked’ in our world.
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Great Lake is at record low levels. (Andrew Fisher photograph. ABC)

Recent rain has done little to replenish Hyrdo’s Tasmania’s storages.

Storages fell to around 18 per cent over the summer period, the lowest in over 40 years, and Hydro’s energy resources manager, David Marshall, says the Basslink power cable and the gas-fired Bell Bay power station are being used extensively.

He says he does not expect power rationing this year.

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