Flora and Fauna Survey
In December 2021 Council engaged Ecosure, an ecological consultant firm, to undertake a comprehensive flora and fauna survey of Council’s bushland areas including selected unmade road reserves.
The purpose of the survey, which replicated previous surveys, was to provide a snapshot of the current biodiversity values and condition assessment of Council’s major natural assets. The study area comprised all large bushland sites and 11 Unmade Road Reserves.
Council’s last comprehensive flora and fauna survey was completed in 2015.
The 2022 survey has highlighted that Council’s flora and fauna and ecological health of bushland sites continues to improve. This is testament to Council’s consistent work program aided by dedicated Bushcare volunteers. Some of the key findings and changes from the last survey include:
- There are now 499 indigenous native plant species recorded (up from 490 in the 2016 survey) since the surveys began in 2001. This is a cumulative total and not all 499 indigenous plants were recorded in this survey.
- There were 48 additional flora species were recorded since the 2016 survey (including an additional 9 indigenous flora species since 2016). The other species were a mix of nonindigenous and introduced species including two Weed of National Significance (WoNs). Both these WoNs, pear cactus and fireweed, are not considered a risk to Council’s natural assets.
- There were again two indigenous ROTAP species Acacia terminalis sub sp. teminalis and Syzygium paniculatum. The presence and disappearance of Acacia terminalis sub sp. terminalis across sites correlates with the use of fire in reserves with fire activity correlating with the emergence of the species. Where it has disappeared, it is suggested that the introduction of fire would see the species re-establish.
- Six bushland sites contain Threatened Ecological Communities (TEC’s) all listed as Endangered.
- There were 64 native fauna species recorded during the survey including 3 amphibians, 43 birds, 9 mammals and 9 species of reptile. There were four threatened fauna species recorded including (powerful owl Ninox strenua, grey-headed flying-fox Pteropus poliocephalus, yellowbellied sheathtail-bat Saccolaimus flaviventris and large-eared pied bat Chalinolobus dwyeri).
For further information contact Council’s Environment and Open Space Team on 9978 4000.