The grassy plains that once covered a third of Victoria were home to Bettongs, Eastern Quolls and Pig-footed Bandicoots.
They shared these native prairies with White-footed Rabbit-rats and Eastern Barred Bandicoots.
Now less than two percent of our wildflower meadows remain. It only took 200 years to almost destroy what was cared for by traditional custodians for over millennia.
Just recently we’ve discovered that the most endangered reptile in the world, the Victorian Grassland Earless Dragon, has managed to hang on – but only 16 individuals are known to exist. Another grassland creature, the Plains Wanderer, is considered the bird of greatest conservation significance in the world.
But still the erasure and destruction of grassland habitat continue. Last year, yesterday, today.
Despite promises and plans from both state and federal governments, these habitats and wildlife still don’t have the protection they deserve.
What can be done?
- The Australian Labor Government must urgently review the failing Melbourne Strategic Assessment – the deal they made that was supposed to protect our grasslands.
- The Victorian Labor Government needs to protect important urban grasslands: Solomon Heights, Ajax Road and Burns Road Grasslands and the Broadcast Australia site in Sydenham among others.
- We need less offsetting and more upfront protection of the remaining patches of our grassy ecosystems.
- We need to restore surviving grassy meadows – with a strong native seed industry.
- Stop destroying grasslands! Everywhere we look we see government clearing grasslands for gas pipelines, batteries, rail upgrades, jails, freight hubs, major roads, train station car parks, housing projects and urban sprawl.
- We could help our 2000+ native endangered plants and animals by using the $3 billion the federal government raises each year from GST on pet-care spending.
- Inspire landowners to look after grasslands with better protections and stronger incentives.
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