The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) has launched a 10-year diversity plan for the State’s first landscape conservation area.
Announced by Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio, the area in Melbourne’s east is expected to preserve the biodiversity of almost 3,000 hectares of land and water frontages.
“The Liwik Barring Landscape Conservation Area will be made up of public land reserves and water frontages, extending from Healesville in the north to Millgrove and Hoddles Creek in the east, Emerald and Cockatoo in the south, and the southern Dandenong Ranges in the south-west,” Ms D’Ambrosio said.
“Traditional Owners, the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung Cultural Heritage Aboriginal Corporation recently named the conservation area ‘Liwik Barring’ meaning Ancestors’ Trail,” she said.
“The name reflects the rich First Peoples history of the area and the network of rivers and streams that connect and link the area.”
Ms D’Ambrosio said the landscape conservation area was the first of its kind to be established under the National Parks Act 1975.
The Minister said the area was home to several threatened species of plants and animals, including Victoria’s animal emblems, the Helmeted Honeyeater and the lowland Leadbeater’s Possum.
“The creation of habitat links between large blocks of land will enable species to move through the landscape,” she said.
“The conservation area will also provide improved water quality and open new areas up for recreation.”
Ms D’Ambrosio said DELWP’s Yellingbo (Liwik Barring) Landscape Conservation Area 10-Year Plan would guide the strategic development, management and planning for the area and addressed key issues such as bushfire risk and conservation of critically endangered species.
She said additional access and recreation opportunities would be provided, with access to some parts of the conservation area limited due to high conservation values.
“The conservation area will be created in phases over several years and once complete will be managed by Parks Victoria,” Ms D’Ambrosio said.