Restoring landscapes across the Mount Alexander Region

9 Nov 2012 – Learning about wetlands of Victoria’s volcanic plain

Posted on 7 November, 2012 by Connecting Country

Damien Cook will be the guest speaker at next Castlemaine Field Naturalist meeting on Friday 9 November. His presentation is entitled Wetlands of the Victorian Volcanic Plain.

Damien is a restoration ecologist with a keen interest in plant and frog taxonomy, wetland processes and geomorphology. He has studied natural history for over 25 years and has worked as an ecologist, project manager and environmental educator for the last 20 years.  Damien is a member of Connecting Country’s Expert Advisory Group, and along with his partner Elaine Bayes, has led fascinating Connecting Country fields days in 2010 and 2011.

Under the federal Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act, Seasonal Herbaceous wetlands of the Lowland Temperate Plains were recently recognized as a critically endangered ecological community.  While the local Moolort Plains are some nearby examples of these type of wetlands, there are hundreds of others known about, particularly in the zone of western Victoria bounded by Colac, Warrnambool, Ararat, Ballarat and Hamilton.  These wetlands predominantly occur on private land, and most have been significantly modified from their pre-European condition.  Damien’s talk will cover these wetland systems in more detail, including aspects of their ecology, biota, distribution and formation.  All are welcome and encouraged to attend. The meeting commences at 7.30pm, and is being held in the hall behind the Uniting Church in Lyttleton St, Castlemaine.  Attendance is free.

Sweet Grass Wetland in the creator of Mt Anakie

The excursion the next day will be to an interesting area of diverse forest near Blackwood, departing from the Octopus building on Duke St (opposite the Castle Motel) at 10am.

For those who would also like to visit some of the Moolort Plains wetlands, the North Central CMA is hosting an excursion on the 2 December.  More details are available by clicking here.

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