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Wednesday, 23 June 2021

Bushfire Recovery partnership supports landholders

Almost 18 months after the devastating Black Summer bushfires, north east Victoria is displaying true resilience as the local flora and fauna steadily return.

A partnership project between Trust for Nature and the North East Catchment Management Authority (CMA) has been working to support bushfire-impacted landholders with conservation covenants through funding from the Australian Government’s Bushfire Recovery package for wildlife and their habitat.

The primary objective of this partnership has been to support the recovery of high-value Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC) listed habitat on private land through activities such as fencing to restrict access, developing post-fire management plans, and implementing monitoring regimes.

This work on fire-affected conservation covenants supports habitat for EPBC-listed species, including the Alpine Tree Frog, Greater Glider and Phantom Wattle. Other threatened species include the Fan Grevillea and Green Grevillea, both recovering well on conservation covenants in the Upper Murray.

Trust for Nature’s North East Conservation Officer Shae Brennan said, “The return of threatened species in these severely impacted landscapes is encouraging and highlights the importance of supporting landholders who permanently protect remnant vegetation.”

“As we draw to the conclusion of this project, it is encouraging to see the positive outcomes that have been achieved,” Shae said.

Omeo landholders Simon and Sonya Lawlor received financial assistance to undertake fencing repairs on their 129ha conservation covenant.

“We are very grateful to have been provided this opportunity,” Mr Lawlor said.

“This assistance has offered us the chance to upgrade our fence line, both to the value and benefit to the conservation covenant and our farmland.”

North East CMA’s Biodiversity Project Officer, Marina Murua, said, “We are happy to facilitate supporting landholders within our community and to be part of these stories – working together is what makes us stronger”.

Trust for Nature is one of Australia’s oldest conservation organisations, established by the Victorian Conservation Trust Act 1972 to protect habitat on private land. It is a non-profit organisation that relies on the generosity of supporters to help protect Victoria’s biodiversity.

This bushfire recovery partnership is supported by North East CMA and Trust for Nature funded by the Australian Government’s Bushfire Recovery package for wildlife and their habitat.

For more information about bushfire recovery efforts in North East Victoria, contact Shae Brennan, Conservation Officer on 0447 001 434 or shaeb@tfn.org.au .

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