2,700 ha of habitat for threatened species legally protected by Victorians
More than 2,700 ha of Victoria – 15 times the size of Melbourne’s CBD – have been protected in 2020-21 to ensure the survival of the state’s wildlife. Working with Trust for Nature, landholders volunteered to permanently protect habitat on their properties with 41 conservation covenants across the state.
The newly protected land includes 137 ha of habitat for critically endangered Plains-wanderer on Victoria’s northern plains. In Victoria’s central highlands, landholders have protected 280 ha of habitat for endangered Leadbeater’s Possums.
One of those landholders is Ann Lazzaro, who volunteered to protect 20 ha of her property at Gladysdale, south east of Yarra Junction, under a conservation covenant. The property protects habitat for the threatened Lewin’s Rail and Swamp Skink.
“Protecting this land gives me a feeling of positivity and hope for the future,” Ann said.
“In this sense the covenant is a legacy that will ensure that this very beautiful and special part of our bush will be given the best chance of flourishing.”
Trust for Nature has now protected nearly 110,000 ha of habitat forever on 1,567 covenanted properties and over 40 reserves.
Trust for Nature CEO Victoria Marles said the result shows Victorian landholders are helping stop the decline of threatened species.
“As the recent Victorian parliamentary inquiry showed, protecting private land is one of the most effective ways to address climate change and halt biodiversity loss.”
“At Trust for Nature we’re aiming to protect another 35,000 ha of habitat for Victoria’s wildlife by 2035. We’re so thankful for all the Victorian landholders who are committed to conserving our wonderful environment,” she said.
Once a property is protected with a conservation covenant, landholders maintain and improve the quality of their habitat supported by land stewardship support from Trust for Nature’s advisors. In 2020-21, Trust for Nature improved nearly 3,000 ha of habitat, facilitated more than 9,000 ha of weed management, organised more than 37,000 ha of feral animal management and helped to install nearly 22 km of fencing.
Eighty per cent of the covenanted properties protect vegetation types that aren’t well represented in national and state parks, including plains grasslands and lower slopes woodlands.
Read more about Trust for Nature’s achievements in our annual report.
James Whitmore, Communications Coordinator, Trust for Nature, 0450 653 811, email@example.com