Endangered Growling Grass Frogs are starting to raise families in a new wetland habitat created in Rockbank, west of Melbourne – the first of dozens to come under a nature conservation program led by DELWP.

Fifteen young Growling Grass Frogs – known as growlers – have been found in the new wetland beside the Kororoit Creek.

The wetland was built by urban developers Woodlea in its Aintree Estate in a project that is led by DELWP and partner agencies, and was opened recently by Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change Lily D’Ambrosio.

Another 90 of these wetlands will be built along creek corridors on Melbourne’s suburban fringe over the next 20 years as part of DELWP’s Metropolitan Strategic Assessment (MSA) program.

The successful breeding of growlers in this new wetland proves this point.

The Growling Grass Frog was declared endangered in Victoria in 2002.

It was once widespread and common, but populations have declined since the 1990s mainly through habitat loss and a deadly fungal disease.

The growlers need still or slow-moving pools with warm places to bask and dense mats of submerged vegetation to protect tadpoles.

The new purpose-built habitat wetlands will help the frogs thrive, with tailor-made design standards that encourage breeding and reduce the impact of disease.

Adjacent habitat such as grassed areas were also considered in the design. These give the frogs places to forage and cover to move between wetlands.

The Growling Grass Frog wetland program is part of the Melbourne Strategic Assessment program which ensures that development in our growth areas follows Victorian and Australian planning and environmental laws and protects our biodiversity for the long term.

DELWP is leading the MSA Growling Grass Frog wetland program in collaboration with Melbourne Water, Traditional Owner groups, local councils, landowners and the Urban Development Institute of Australia.

The project also preserves open space that allows residents of these new suburbs to re-connect with nature.

You can join the program and become a citizen scientist by recording frog calls at rivers, creeks or wetlands via Melbourne Water’s frog census app.

Page last updated: 21/12/21