Protecting our Endangered grasslands

Removing weeds from our damp grasslands

The critically endangered Natural Damp Grassland community of the Victorian Coastal Plains is a type of grassland dominated by tussock grasses that grow on heavy silty–loamy soils that are poorly draining, often damp and sometimes waterlogged. This ecological community provides a range of ecosystem services with known occurrences in South Gippsland, the head of Western Port and Phillip Island.

Project description

In 2023 the Gippsland Threatened Species Action Group (GTSAG) received a Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) Coastcare grant to undertake weed control at three significant South Gippsland Plains Grassland sites in Bass Coast.

The two sites at Kilcunda were to carry out control of invasive weedy grasses as well as controlling Swamp Paperbark (Melaleuca ericifolia) and Coast Wattle (Acacia longifolia subsp. sophorae) encroachment into this vegetation community.

Above: Rance Rd, Kilcunda. Right: Scenic Estate Nature Conservation Reserve. Photos Graham Petersen.

This EVC is listed under the Federal Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) act of 1999 under the name ‘Natural Damp Grassland of the Victorian Coastal Plains’ and is rated as critically endangered. It is also listed under the Victorian FFG Act under the name of Plains Grassland (South Gippsland) Community.

The third site for weed control was Scenic Estate Nature Conservation Reserve, Phillip Island where weeds such as Gorse (Ulex europaeus) and African Daisy (Disa bracteata) were removed.