Biodiversity and habitat connectivity

Echidna walking

Biodiversity in Maroondah

As part of a municipal-wide vegetation review guided by the Maroondah Housing Strategy 2016, Biosphere Pty Ltd (Dr Graeme Lorimer) was engaged to provide a contemporary assessment of Maroondah’s biodiversity with a focus on indigenous species, communities, and habitats, and an updated assessment of sites originally identified by Dr. Lorimer in his 1997 report Sites of Biological Significance in Maroondah. 

This resulted in the delivery of Biodiversity in Maroondah Volumes 1 & 2 (2020). Read more and view the documents below.

Habitat connectivity in Maroondah

In response to an action in the Maroondah Vegetation Strategy 2020-2030, Eco Logical Australia were engaged to apply a spatial modelling method to identify the optimal routes through the Maroondah landscape for improving habitat connectivity.

This resulted in the delivery of the Maroondah Habitat  Connectivity Plan (2021). Read more and view the document below.

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 1

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 1 provides a contemporary overview of Maroondah’s biodiversity including what species and ecosystems it comprises, where it is concentrated, what threatens and sustains it, and what Maroondah City Council and the community can do to protect, restore and improve it.

Chapter 11 of Volume 1 is titled “Actions for Council consideration”. This chapter covers aspects of strategic and statutory planning, reserve management, water management, community support and involvement, and monitoring.

It summarises issues raised in other parts of the report to which “..Council may wish to respond, or at least to take into account in related decisions that it has to consider..” and suggests actions for Council’s consideration.

Maroondah staff from relevant teams were consulted in the preparation of a corresponding internal document Council responses to 'Actions for Council consideration' in Biodiversity in Maroondah 2020 Volume 1(PDF, 314KB), outlining responses to each of the suggested actions

In summary, there is in principle support for the intent and directions of all of the suggested actions.

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 1(PDF, 6MB)

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 2

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 2 provides an individual analysis of each site in Maroondah that meets the Victorian Government’s criteria for ‘sites of biological significance’. It identifies 109 current Sites of Biological Significance, with recommendations for their protection through planning provisions.

Volume 2 of Biodiversity in Maroondah (2020) was formally adopted by Maroondah Council as an accepted base of evidence to underpin future policy at their Ordinary Council meeting on February 20 2023.

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volumes 1 & 2 (2020) was an important source of information for the preparation of the Maroondah Vegetation Strategy 2020-2030.

Biodiversity in Maroondah Volume 2(PDF, 50MB)

Habitat connectivity in Maroondah

Action 2.3(b) in the Maroondah Vegetation Strategy 2020-2030 states: “Review the 2005 Habitat Corridor Strategy to confirm priority linkage routes and align with this strategy’s focus on habitat for a suite of ‘focal’ species, and accurately depict their spatial extent and arrangement on Council’s GIS system.

This led to the engagement of Eco Logical Australia to identify the strategically most important locations and measures that offer the best opportunities for improving indigenous flora and fauna habitat connectivity and function in Maroondah, to ensure the potential for spreading more nature throughout Maroondah is optimised.

To do this, Eco Logical Australia undertook spatial modelling using the General Approach to Planning Connectivity from Local to Regional Scales (GAP-CloSR) decision framework(PDF, 4MB) with input from a project advisory group.

This process used dispersal parameters of three focal species, and resistance scores for land cover categories to model ‘paths of least resistance’ to identify priority locations as one of:

  • core habitat patch to be protected
  • potential habitat patch to be improved
  • connecting pathway to be created

The method and results were provided in the Maroondah Habitat Connectivity Plan (2021)(PDF, 81MB).

The addition of a 50-metre buffer to these priority locations enabled the habitat biolinks to be depicted on a map, as shown below:

Map of the habitat biolinks

Further information

For more information on Biodiversity in Maroondah, please contact Council on 1300 88 22 33.