The West Gippsland CMA has been working closely with landholders, the community and HVP Plantations to restore and protect the unique chain of ponds in the Perry River catchment.

Achievements to date include:
  • 1,004 hectares cleared of weeds
  • 47 hectares of pest animal control
  • 105 hectares of stock grazing regime changed.

Landholders stand in front of a fence with utility trucks behind themIn May 2018, 36 people went to a community forum and site visit near Stockdale to discuss the significance of the ponds, and how groups could work together to protect the delicate waterway system. Local farmer John Boyd shared his involvement with the project, and participants could see the benefits for themselves on his property. Local landholders (left: photo credit West Gippsland CMA and DELWP) have been very supportive of weed control works to support the ponds restoration.

The West Gippsland CMA have developed an important partnership with HVP Plantations to protect the chain of ponds waterways on their property. They have since undertaken a mapping process, which has identified 300–400 temporary and permanent ponds within their managed estate. HVP Plantations were not aware of the unique chain of ponds on their estate until the project began and are now committed to their protection.

West Gippsland is home to a unique series of waterways in the Perry River catchment called a ‘chain of ponds’. A chain of ponds is a waterway with irregularly spaced, deep pools separated by a grassy depression or shallow undefined channel. They used to be common across south-eastern Australia but are now quite rare.

This project is helping to protect and restore the chain of ponds so that over the long-term, the habitat of native animals such as threatened fish (Dwarf Galaxias and Pygmy Perch) and rare frogs (Green and Golden Beokll Frog) can be restored.

A pond with fencing around it

Pond protected with fencing on private land. Photo credit: DELWP.

Partners

West Gippsland CMA, Trust for Nature, HVP Plantations, Gunaikurnai Land and Waters Aboriginal Corporation, East Gippsland Landcare Network, Maffra and District Landcare Network, Greening Australia, Southern Rural Water, Wellington Shire Council, Parks Victoria and the Department of Economic Development, Jobs, Transport and Resources.

We are now very much aware of the environmental significance and sensitivity of the Providence Ponds and Perry River Chain of Ponds System and so now they have been added to HVP’s list of Sensitive Waterways. Listed Waterways attract a greater degree of environmental protection through the establishment of native vegetation buffers for example so this change of policy on its own should help protect the ponds and associated flora and fauna well into the future.
HVP Plantation Views, February, 2018

Page last updated: 28/06/19