THE Dja Dja Wurrung will use $300,000 in Victorian Government funding to help protect the cultural significance of critical habitat for a range of flora and fauna in central Victoria.
Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation chief executive Rodney Carter said the project would cultivate culturally significant species while simultaneously protecting biodiversity and managing threats to the landscape.
It will focus on the Recognition Settlement Agreement area, which covers about 47,523ha and includes the Campaspe River.
Jointly managed by the DDWCAC and Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, it is recognised as a threatened landscape.
‘‘The woodland grass areas within this landscape provide habitat for several threatened species such as the Red Cross spider orchid and the Stuart Mill spider orchid,’’ Mr Carter said.
‘‘The landscape also has important cultural significance, providing plants and animals for traditional use by the Dja Dja Wurrung people including yam daisy, vanilla lily and chocolate lily.
‘‘We will work in collaboration with the DELWP, Parks Victoria, North Central Catchment Authority, Trust for Nature, Bush Heritage, Connecting Country and private land owners to prepare, seed and monitor targeted sites.
‘‘We will undertake pest and weed control, revegetate with culturally significant plants and trial the use of ecological thinning with fire to restore habitat.
‘‘The project will put Dja Dja Wurrung people back in their landscape and draw on their traditional knowledge to make decisions about how the landscape is managed.’’
DELWP biodiversity program manager Jill Fleming said the project would align with the existing work Forest Fire Management Victoria and Parks Victoria were undertaking with their recent traditional planned burns by influencing fire regimes to improve the make-up of habitat and species in grassland and open woodland areas.