Between 2013-2018, the Australian Government allocated $1 million to Yarra4Life for the ‘Protecting and Connecting EPBC Species in the Yarra Ranges’ project. The project had a specific focus on providing connections and protection for two of Victoria’s faunal emblems, the critically endangered Helmeted Honeyeater and the critically endangered lowland subspecies of the Leadbeater’s Possum, in the Yarra Ranges. Outcomes to be delivered included a mix of planning, on-ground works, and landholder engagement and training activities.
The initial planning phase of the project centred on the development of an ‘Ecological Character Description’ (or ECD) for the region. An ECD is a conceptual planning tool that attempts to synthesise both scientific and practical sources of knowledge to capture the ‘essence’ or ‘character’ of a particular ecosystem (or species) to help guide its restoration.
The Yarra4Life ECD has been developed through a series of community workshops along with a scientific literature review and technical input by DELWP and their scientific colleagues at the Arthur Rylah Institute (ARI). An associated ‘Action Plan’ has been created to guide the implementation of the ECD’s recommendations. Together, they provide a framework for directing and prioritising on-ground works as we move into the implementation phase of the project.
A Social Research project involving stakeholders and communities was also developed undertook to identify the optimum engagement opportunities and methods to ensure the project is effective in achieving its stated outcomes.
A Social Research project involving stakeholders and communities has also undertaken to identify the optimum engagement opportunities and methods to ensure the project is effective in achieving its stated outcomes.