Using fire to restore habitat at Wilsons Prom

Parks Victoria

Wilsons Promontory National Park protects an incredible variety of habitats and ecosystems – from rainforests to woodlands, heathlands to swamps, bordered by coastal communities and surrounded by rocky reefs, kelp forests, sponge gardens and seagrass meadows.

Over millions of years of adaptation, the heathlands and coastal grassy woodlands at Wilsons Prom rely on fire to stay healthy.

Using a combination of expert advice, management experience and careful planning – plus waiting for the right weather conditions – we use ecological planned burning to help restore and renew ecosystems that have adapted to fire.

Watch this video to see how ecological burning is helping to restore the coastal grassy woodlands at Yanakie Isthmus, in the northern section of Wilsons Prom.

There are lots of different threats to the health of the Prom and we need to use different tools to manage those threats. Parks Victoria puts a lot of thought and planning into developing strategies and choosing the right tools to take care of these diverse ecosystems.

Using the Conservation action planning methodology, we identify and focus on strategies that will achieve the greatest improvement in the overall health of ecosystems. In the Wilsons Promontory Conservation Action Plan, we have identified the ecosystems where ecological burning will help preserve the Prom’s unique natural environment.

Other tools and strategies to prevent damage to our parks and protect the natural environment include animal control, small-scale exclusion fencing, geospatial mapping, revegetation, signage and interpretation, species reintroduction, visitor management and weed removal.

See the Wilsons Prom Conservation Action Plan for more detail on conservation programs planned for the Prom.

We will continue to use ecological burns to revitalise the Prom as set out in the Wilsons Promontory Conservation Action Plan, in partnership with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, VicForests and Melbourne Water.

Note: This video was filmed in line with the health directives in place at the time. Please follow all current COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions.

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