Since February 2018, a diverse array of community groups, Traditional Owners, government and non-government partners from across the Murray River geographic area have participated in Biodiversity Response Planning. Their key task was to recommend a package of projects to DELWP for funding and refer additional recommended projects to an Independent Assessment Panel for state-wide consideration.  This was completed in June 2018.

Five projects worth a total of $2.587 million over three years have been announced for on-ground action along the significant Murray River to secure Victoria’s biodiversity. These projects will be delivered over three years by various government and non-government stakeholders and will directly contribute to the targets of Biodiversity 2037, under the goal ‘Victoria's natural environment is healthy’.

Projects announced for funding in this region are identified on the maps and list below:

App ID Project Funding Project Lead / Delivery Partners Project summary
BRP048 Robinvale to Nyah - conserving Robinvale Plain and Murray Fan bioregions $708,300 Mallee Catchment Management Authority
Swan Hill Rural City Council
Delivery of an integrated invasive species control program will address key threats across 17,005 hectares of priority habitat within the Robinvale Plain and Murray Fan bioregions; ultimately supporting enhanced connectivity and condition outcomes.
BRP051 Protecting and enhancing the biodiversity of the Murray Scroll Belt in far north-western Victoria $763,700 Parks Victoria
Trust for Nature
Mildura Rural City Council
First Peoples of the Millewa-Mallee
Aboriginal Victoria
Sporting Shooters Association Australia
VicRoads 
Protect and enhance semi-arid woodlands, riverine and wetland communities, and threatened flora and fauna species across 50,000 hectares of public and 30,000 hectares of private (Neds Corner Station) land in the Murray Scroll Belt of far-north-western Victoria, by controlling priority invasive species and revegetating 1,000 hectares of semi-arid woodlands.
BRP059 Linking Lower Goulburn to Barmah private land works $343,200 Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority
Trust for Nature
Goulburn Murray Landcare Network
Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network
Linking Lower Goulburn and Barmah will improve vegetation connectivity between the Lower Goulburn and Barmah National Parks by revegetating, fencing, and controlling weeds, foxes and rabbits over 40 hectares of private land. This will improve habitat for threatened species, including Bush -stone curlew, Grey-crown babbler, Squirrel glider and Tree goanna.
BRP074 Protecting and enhancing the Barmah and Lower Goulburn red gum forests, wetlands and floodplains $370,755 Parks Victoria
Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority
Sporting Shooters Association Australia
Yorta Yorta, Nation Aboriginal Corporation
Protection of the Barmah Ramsar site, red gum forests, wetlands, floodplains, Moira-grass plains, colonially-nesting waterbirds, ground-dwelling mammals, frogs and reptiles (including many threatened species) across 31,000 hectares of public land in the Lower Goulburn and Barmah National Parks by controlling pigs, goats, and woody weeds.
BRP100 Iconic estates - Murray River $401,474 Trust for Nature  Ongoing protection for 300 hectares of Victoria's most important habitat on private land around the Murray River, in partnership with local and regional networks and individual landholders, including the use of voluntary conservation convenants.

More information

An initial task of the Working Group was to identify priority landscapes or themes within the area, which formed the basis of BRP projects. This process utilised the 40% Cost Effective Actions Maps within the Strategic Management Prospects tool, together with other strategic plans (e.g. Conservation Action Plans), knowledge of existing project footprints and activity (e.g. Biodiversity On-Ground Action, Landcare, Weeds and Pests on Public Land) along with the collective expertise of the Working Group members.

The Working Group engaged with stakeholders within these priority landscapes/themes to develop projects that most cost-effectively deliver improved biodiversity outcomes within those landscapes or themes. Those priority landscapes are shown below. 

Murray River NW

Murray River NE

The table below explains the priority themes to guide project development within each landscape.

AREA

LANDSCAPE

PRIORITY ACTIONS

1

Murray Scroll Belt

Lindsay-Wallpolla public land: managing threats including weeds, goats, pigs, rabbits, foxes, managing grazing pressure, feral cat control and re-vegetation.

East area focus on private land including permanent protection, managing weeds and rabbits, fencing to manage grazing.

2

Robinvale to Nyah

Public and private land focus on managing threats including rabbits, goats, pigs, weeds, permanent protection

3

Gunbower Island

Compliment work done by Gunbower Enhancement Project, rabbit control in culturally sensitive areas, manage terrestrial weeds inundating the forest and park. Control and potentially eradicate large introduced herbivores on public land.

4

Linking Lower Goulburn and Barmah Sand Hills

Enhance private property linking public land (between Barmah and Goulburn) including revegetation, rabbit management, remnant protection. Manage large introduced herbivores (pigs, goats and deer), weeds and potentially foxes.

5

Lower Kiewa

Public land management including weed removal.

6

Lower Ovens Herbivore Control

Controlling large introduced herbivores (pigs) in linkages on public land.

The Working Group then assessed project proposals and recommended an area-based package for funding, working within indicative area-based funding allocations. Working Groups also recommended additional projects for funding from a competitive pool, which were subsequently assessed by an independent panel. All projects to be funded  from these processes are listed above.

The working group was chaired by the Area Lead - DELWP

The group was supported by a Partnership Facilitator - DELWP

The working group members were:

  • Parks Victoria (x3)
  • DELWP (x4)
  • Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (GBCMA) (x3)
  • Community Representative
  • Trust for Nature
  • Barapa Land & Water Landcare Group
  • Mallee Catchment Management Authority (MCMA)
  • North Central Catchment Management Authority (NCCMA)
  • Tati Tati Wadi Wadi
  • Water & Catchment
  • People & Parks Foundation

An evaluation of this first phase of Biodiversity Response Planning has commenced, led by an independent evaluation expert. The evaluation will be an opportunity for participants to have their say on what has worked well and what has not. Outcomes from the evaluation will be used to make improvements to delivery of Biodiversity Response Planning in 2019 and beyond.  Further information about the evaluation is available at Biodiversity Response Planning.

For further information, contact the DELWP Customer Service Centre on 136 186 to be directed to your area lead, or email  biodiversity.plan@delwp.vic.gov.au.