Saving Our Species Contestable Grants Program

The Saving our Species Contestable Grants program is a contestable grants program seeking to achieve long-term outcomes for threatened species in New South Wales.

Funded by the Office of Environment and Heritage and the NSW Environmental Trust, the program encourages partnerships between government, the community, non-government organisations and industry to protect and conserve our most vulnerable plants and animals.

The program is funding a total of 28 projects worth $8,179,937 across New South Wales.

Aim of the program

The program is focused on supporting projects that will contribute to securing threatened landscape-managed species and threatened ecological communities in the wild. Grant recipients will implement on-ground actions and monitoring actions consistent with threatened species conservation projects developed by the Saving our Species (SoS) program or, where conservation projects have not been developed, that meet the objectives of the program.

Objectives

The objectives of the SoS Contestable Grants program are:

  • maximising the number of threatened landscape-managed species and threatened ecological communities secured in the wild in NSW through strategic investment
  • forming long-term partnerships for threatened species conservation
  • supporting cost-effective investment and responding to effective monitoring, evaluation and reporting.

The SoS Contestable Grants program aligns with the NSW Government's SoS Program and framework which was launched in December 2013. For more information please visit the Saving our Species webpage.

Grants awarded

In late 2018, a total of 28 projects worth $8,179,937 were awarded under the program. This followed an open call for applications during mid-2018 where a total of 49 applications were received.

The grants will provide direct funding to 23 landscape managed species and 30 threatened ecological communities listed under the SoS program. Approximately 70 other threatened species and 10 threatened ecological communities co-occurring with these entities will also benefit from the program.

A map (JPG 5.8MB) detailing the location of all projects awarded has been made available to either be viewed online or downloaded.

The project summaries below detail the Saving our Species Contestable grants awarded.

Organisation Project title Amount awarded
BirdLife Australia Birds on Farms – Re-ageing the Temperate Woodlands of Central West NSW $349,913
Blue Mountains City Council Forests for the Future-Lower Blue Mountains and Western Sydney Eucalyptus Forests TEC Project $350,000
Central West Local Land Services Making Central Inland Glossies Great Again $343,750
Clarence Environment Centre Protecting the Shannon Dam – Chambigne Dry Rainforest Threatened Ecological Communities $345,421
Coffs Harbour City Council Greenery for our Grey Nomads: Renovating priority regional roosts for Grey-Headed Flying-Fox $309,010
Conservation Volunteers Australia Saving our Woodland Birds on TSRs in the Bungendore Region $279,959
Coolamon Shire Council Coolamon Shire Grey Box Woodland protection and enhancement project $22,600
Federation University Australia Ensuring the long-term survival of Halosarcia Lylei low-open shrubland $258,706
Greater Sydney Landcare Network Inc. Cumberland Plain Restoration Program $348,025
Greening Australia Capital Region Glossy Black-Cockatoo Habitat Restoration $350,000
Greening Australia (NSW) Ltd Climbing the Rainforest Restoration Canopy $350,000
Hawkesbury City Council Protection of Shale Sandstone Transition Forest $153,616
Jali Local Aboriginal Land Council Saving Our Species at Nguunya Jargoon IPA $90,760
Lord Howe Island Board Regeneration ecology and a secure future for Lagunaria Swamp Forest on Lord Howe Island $73,837
Mid Lachlan Landcare Inc White Box, Yellow Box, Blakely's Red Gum Woodland Habitat on Farms $294,385
Murray Darling Wetlands Working Group Saving the Australian Painted Snipe and other wetland-dependent threatened species in Gayini wetlands $344,240
North Coast Local Land Services Addressing transformer weed threats $350,000
Northern Beaches Council Saving Sydney's Freshwater Wetlands on Sydney's Northern Beaches $320,000
OzFish Unlimited Saving Our Saltmarsh (and other lower Richmond River TECs) $264,100
Petaurus Education Group Inc. Saving Burrumbuttock’s Squirrel Gliders $350,000
Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust Northwest NSW Rainforest and Woodland Relict Conservation Project $343,080
South East Local Land Services Thinking Inside the Box Gum Grassy Woodlands $350,000
Taree Indigenous Development and Employment (TIDE) Protect Littoral Rainforest TEC at Pacific Palms $247,000
Tweed Shire Council Lowland Lyrebird Links in the Tweed Caldera $341,200
University of New England Managing the community viability and genetic integrity of woodland TECs $349,951
University of New England Dynamic Lagoons: building knowledge and public support to secure threatened Upland Wetlands $350,000
University of Newcastle Improving conservation of vulnerable amphibian fauna in protected habitats $300,627
University of New South Wales Implementing an action toolbox to conserve Coastal Upland Swamps in the Sydney Basin $349,757
28 projects totalling $8,179,937

Project summary detail

BirdLife Australia
Project Title Birds on Farms – Re-ageing the Temperate Woodlands of Central West NSW
Grant $349,913
Target Landscape-managed species Hooded Robin
Brown Treecreeper
Turquoise Parrot
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
Woodland bird habitat has been severely depleted throughout south-east Australia. This project will restore woodland remnants through a process of 're-ageing'; involving actively reintroducing lost habitat features through:
  • careful management of fire, firewood removal and stock grazing to avoid collateral loss of standing dead timber (SDT), fallen timber or coarse woody debris (CWD), and accumulated litter
  • promoting future stocks of SDT, CWD, and mature feed trees and shrubs by encouraging natural regeneration and maturation to late senescence of trees and shrubs
  • reintroducing CWD by importing timber from sustainable sources
  • active reintroduction of nest hollows through arboriculture techniques and nest boxes, and shrubs through infill plantings
  • augmenting other lost features through long-term planning, and commitment of landholders to maintain the re-ageing process well into the future.
This will be achieved through a combination of education and capacity building, leading to targeted works, and supported by continued surveillance, monitoring, and refinement of management by landholders themselves. Our project will leverage and complement related on-ground restoration activities currently led by Local Land Services and dove-tail with SOS-funded research activities led by University of Queensland.

 

Blue Mountains City Council
Project Title Forests for the Future-Lower Blue Mountains and Western Sydney Eucalyptus Forests TEC Project
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Sun Valley Cabbage Gum Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
  2. Blue Mountains Shale Cap Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
Project Description
This project will restore and protect key Eucalyptus Forests Threatened Ecological Communities (TECs) of the lower Blue Mountains and the Eastern Escarpment including the critically endangered Sun Valley Cabbage Gum TEC and the endangered Blue Mountains Shale Cap Forest TEC.

The partnership between Blue Mountains City Council and other stakeholders, will develop and implement a best practice integrated bush regeneration, weed control, priority weed inspection, community awareness and engagement, school education and private landholder incentive program; to buffer, protect and conserve these unique Eucalyptus TECs into the future in the Lower Blue Mountains and Eastern Escarpment portions of their range.

 

Central West Local Land Services
Project Title Making Central Inland Glossies Great Again
Grant $343,750
Target Landscape-managed species Glossy Black-Cockatoo
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
Central inland NSW is home to a significant, distinctive but declining Glossy Black-Cockatoo (GBC) population concentrated in forest and woodland areas stretching from Parkes to Narrabri. A collaborative partnership between Local Land Services, Office of Environment and Heritage, National Parks and Wildlife Service, Australian Wildlife Conservancy, Landcare groups, Forestry Corporation NSW, Dubbo Field Naturalists and Conservation Society and the Central Inland Glossy Black-Cockatoo Working Group, will implement Central Inland GBC Conservation Strategy actions across 3 broad sites that will enable community involvement and on-ground action in GBC conservation. Foraging habitat and nesting trees will be mapped and protected. New habitat areas on public and private land will be established and existing habitat will be enhanced.

 

Clarence Environment Centre
Project Title Protecting the Shannon Dam – Chambigne Dry Rainforest Threatened Ecological Communities
Grant $345,421
Target Landscape-managed species Yellow-bellied Sheathtail Bat
Brush-tailed Phascogale
Three-toed Snake-toothed Skink
Eastern False Pipistrelle
Eastern Cave Bat
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Lowland Rainforest on Floodplain in the New South Wales North Coast Bioregion
  2. Swamp Sclerophyll Forest on Coastal Floodplains of the New South Wales North Coast, Sydney Basin and South East Corner Bioregions – NSW North Coast
  3. Freshwater Wetlands on Coastal Floodplains of the New South Wales North Coast, Sydney Basin and South East Corner Bioregions
Project Description
This project will address key threats to the Shannon Dam – Chambigne Dry Rainforest Threatened Ecological Community in an integrated and regional approach across tenures with the co-ordination of the community of landowners. Actions will focus on reducing the impacts of these threats by undertaking weed management, restricting or eliminating grazing, implementing appropriate fire regimes and fire protection, and implementing best practice restoration principles. The project also aims to improve community understanding of the values and threats to these threatened ecological communities and species, and landholders will be encouraged to enter into Voluntary Conservation Agreements.

 

Coffs Harbour City Council
Project Title Greenery for our Grey Nomads: Renovating priority regional roosts for Grey-Headed Flying-fox
Grant $309,010
Target Landscape-managed species Grey-Headed Flying-fox
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
This project will implement key actions identified in the Coffs Harbour Flying-Fox Strategic Management Plan (2017). The Coffs Harbour City Council will team up with partners from our local community to invest in and deliver the project, including WIRES, National Parks and Wildlife Service, and Coffs Harbour Regional Landcare. The project will significantly contribute to the regeneration of 3 nationally important areas of habitat for the threatened Grey-Headed Flying-fox. It will also address other key threats to the Grey-Headed Flying-fox and project activities will directly benefit a number of other special threatened species and ecological communities that occur in the 3 project areas. An important part of the project will involve exciting and interactive education sessions for local primary school aged children, on the environmental values of the project areas. In addition, the project includes a robust monitoring program that will allow the conservation and other outcomes of the project to be tracked, measured and evaluated over the life of the 7-year project.

 

Conservation Volunteers Australia
Project Title Saving our Woodland Birds on TSRs in the Bungendore Region
Grant $279,959
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. White Box Yellow Box Blakely's Red Gum Woodland (Box Gum Woodland)
  2. Tablelands Snow Gum, Black Sallee, Candlebark and Ribbon Gum Grassy Woodland
Project Description
The Bungendore region has experienced a history of agricultural land use and is extensively cleared and modified. Box Gum Woodland and Tablelands Snow Gum Woodland Threatened Ecological Communities are considerably depleted in extent and integrity and threatened species that depend on these communities are reduced in population size. Conservation Volunteers Australia) proposes to lead teams of volunteers to work on selected projects on 6 Travelling Stock Reserves in the Bungendore area. Qualified Ecologists engaged by Conservation Volunteers Australia will liaise with South East Local Land Services to integrate information into Travelling Stock Reserves management plans and ensure long-term protection of Threatened Ecological Communities and threatened species. Landholders in the area will be invited to workshops to increase community awareness of threats to TECs and threatened species and encourage sustainable land management practices.

 

Coolamon Shire Council
Project Title Coolamon Shire Grey Box Woodland protection and enhancement project
Grant $22,600
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Inland Grey box Woodland
Project Description
This project will increase community awareness of a threatened ecological community within the Coolomon Shire. The project will take actions such as fencing, weed control and revegetation to protect and enhance this valuable area. These actions will also connect significant remnant forest areas located at Coolamon and Ganmain. The project will see the development of a management committee comprising of Coolamon Shire, Coolamon Landcare and Kindra Bike and Walking Trail management committee to ensure long-term viability of the project through on-ground works, education and development of links between user groups and landholders.

 

Federation University Australia
Project Title Ensuring long-term survival of Halosarcia Lylei low-open shrubland
Grant $258,706
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Halosarcia lylei low-open shrubland
Project Description
Halosarcia lylei low-open shrubland is currently only known in NSW from a few salinas in the Scotia Region of the far south-west, largely located on Nanya Station. This project aims to address lack of knowledge of its full extent through surveys of other sites within the Huntingfield and Birdwood Land systems; monitoring of known sites; protection of all examples of the community on Nanya Station through establishing low grazing levels across the landscape; ensuring total protection at 2 locations on Nanya Station through establishment of total grazing exclosures; determining the extent of threats from grazing pressure through establishment of grazing exclosures on location on pastoral properties within the Scotia area.

Any weed invasion will be monitored and controlled at all sites. This project will address lack of knowledge on reproductive success and level of genetic diversity within NSW populations. Monitoring of sites over a 7-year period and beyond will ensure understanding of the effects of extreme stochastic events including prolonged flooding and drought. All data collected through this project will be entered into relevant NSW databases.

 

Greater Sydney Landcare Network Inc.
Project Title Cumberland Plain Restoration Program
Grant $348,025
Target Landscape-managed species Cumberland Plain Land Snail
Eastern Freetail-bat
Little Lorikeet
Masked Owl
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Castlereagh Swamp Woodland Community
  2. Cooks River/Castlereagh Ironbark Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
  3. Cumberland Plain Woodland in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
  4. River-flat Eucalypt Forest on Coastal Floodplains of the NSW North Coast Sydney Basin and South East Corner Bioregions
  5. Shale Gravel Transition Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
Project Description
Cumberland Plain Threatened Ecological Communities (TECs) are facing an extremely high risk of extinction in the immediate future due to loss of geographic distribution from land clearing; a very large reduction in ecological function due to a change in community structure and species composition; a disruption of ecological processes including altered fire regimes; invasion and establishment of exotic species; and degradation and fragmentation of habitat.

The Cumberland Plain Restoration Program will deliver on outcomes to address these shortfalls, through:
  1. ecological/cultural fire planning and implementation
  2. vegetation management and
  3. structural habitat restoration.
The Program also aims to improve the extent, condition and connectivity of the remaining patches of a number of TECs over the long-term, with the development of strong partnerships between National Parks and Wildlife Service and local Councils and, the engagement of volunteers able to restore TECs across the Cumberland Plain – in addition to the education of the local and wider community.

 

Greening Australia Capital Region
Project Title Glossy Black-Cockatoo Habitat Restoration
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species Glossy Black-Cockatoo
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. White Box Yellow Box Blakely's Redgum Woodland
  2. Tablelands Snow Gum, Black Sallee, Candlebark and Ribbon Gum Grassy woodland
Project Description
Our project aims to restore habitat specifically for the Glossy Black-Cockatoo through planting primarily forage trees (Allocasuarina) and other woodland trees such as Eucalypts and Acacias. The protection of large mature eucalypts through incorporation into restoration sites will also be encouraged. Landholder awareness of the birds and their habitat needs will be increased through a series of workshops.

The project will work in areas that will also protect and enhance 2 threatened ecological communities; White Box Yellow Box Blakely's Redgum Woodland; and Tablelands Snow Gum, Black Sallee, Candlebark and Ribbon Gum Grassy woodland. The scale and specific design of the projects will benefit an additional suite of threatened woodland birds including the Hooded Robin, Brown Treecreeper (eastern subspecies), Diamond Firetail, Speckled Warbler, Scarlet Robin, Flame Robin and Dusky Woodswallow. Monitoring of the project outcomes will complement and strengthen Greening Australia's long-term program of monitoring birds in revegetated sites.

 

Greening Australia (NSW) Ltd
Project Title Climbing the Rainforest Restoration Canopy
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Western Sydney Dry Rainforest
Project Description
Western Sydney Dry Rainforest (WSDR) is a living fossil, one of the last examples of Sydney's prehistoric environment. Only 26% of this highly significant ecosystem remains and restoration and management are hampered by challenging terrain, requiring the development of cost effective methods to address key weed threats and to re-establish appropriate species. The project will:
  • use aerial mapping of WSDR within the Razorback region to improve our understanding of the extent, condition and terrain of this Threatened Ecological Community to inform future conservation measures
  • undertake restoration of WSDR at 3 demonstration sites with secure tenure, using best practice techniques, support 10 private landowners to manage WSDR on their land; secure, store and test genetic material from 30 species to enable species reintroduction and assisted regeneration
  • increase community awareness through targeted engagement with private landowners with WDRS on their land and whole of community education displays and educational material at the Australian Botanic Garden, Mount Annan.

 

Hawkesbury City Council
Project Title Protection of Shale Sandstone Transition Forest
Grant $153,616
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Shale Sandstone Transition Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
Project Description
The vegetation of the Hawkesbury area is diverse and complex, reflecting the diversity of environments with regard to influences such as the Hawkesbury-Nepean River, local geology, and climate. Numerous threatened ecological communities are represented in the Hawkesbury and suffer a range of threats to their ongoing survival. This project aims to ensure the survival of Shale Sandstone Transition Forest by addressing and managing threats, improving condition through on-ground action and raising awareness through community newsletters and events.

In the lower mountains, this vegetation community also supports significant koala populations so the protection and enhancement of these communities will also assist in ensuring quality habitat remains for koalas. Treating invasive weeds and promoting natural regeneration will be the focus of the project, particularly smothering vines and woody weeds, as these are the primary factors in declining condition at our sites.

 

Jali Local Aboriginal Land Council
Project Title Saving Our Species at Nguunya Jargoon IPA
Grant $90,760
Target Landscape-managed species Grey-headed Flying-fox
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Coastal Cypress Pine Forest in the New Wales North Coast Bioregion
  2. Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest of the New South North Coast Sydney Basin and South East Corner
Project Description
Jali will work with the local and broader community to restore Coastal Cypress Pine Forest in the NSW North Coast Bioregion and Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest of the NSW North Coast Sydney Basin and South East Corner Bioregion located within Nguunya Jargoon Indigenous Protected Area (IPA). Jali will lead teams of bush regenerators to carry out on-ground restoration works and engage with Conservation Volunteers (CVA) to increase community awareness of these 2 endangered ecological communities through educational activities and development of information sheets. By engaging the local community and working with CVA the project also aims to build capacity for the local community to better care for threatened species into the future.

Nguunya Jargoon IPA provides core habitat and connectivity for a diverse range of species, including many threatened species listed under NSW and Commonwealth legislation. More than 400 native plant species are found here, many of which the Bundjalung people used for food, medicine and tools. The Eastern Grass Owl, Grey-Headed Flying-fox and Eastern Osprey are landscape-managed species that occur at the site and will directly benefit from this project.

 

Lord Howe Island Board
Project Title Regeneration ecology and a secure future for Lagunaria Swamp Forest on Lord Howe Island
Grant $73,837
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Lagunaria Swamp Forest on Lord Howe Island
Project Description
We aim to understand the ecological processes that limit natural regeneration of Lagunaria Swamp Forest on Lord Howe Island and how these can be leveraged to maximise floristic and structural diversity and long-term persistence of remnant stands. Using a combination of field and laboratory approaches, we will identify species at risk of recruitment failure and the underlying causes, including:
  1. poor seed production within, or dispersal into, remnant patches;
  2. seed predation;
  3. disruption of natural disturbance regimes or weed impacts that preclude suitable conditions for germination and establishment
  4. seedling herbivory, disease and environmental stress. We will establish long-term monitoring plots to examine demographic changes in populations of component species and will undertake comprehensive seed collections for ex-situ conservation at PlantBank (Mt Annan Botanic Gardens) and the Millenium Seed Bank (Kew Gardens).
The knowledge obtained through this project will allow us to develop and implement a management strategy that promotes an expanding and self-sustaining community requiring minimal intervention. Learning outcomes will be broadly applicable to other threatened ecological communities requiring habitat restoration.

 

Mid Lachlan Landcare Inc.
Project Title White Box, Yellow Box, Blakely's Red Gum Woodland Habitat on Farms
Grant $294,385
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities White Box, Yellow Box, Blakely';s Red Gum Woodland
Project Description
White Box, Yellow Box, Blakely's Red Gum Grassy Woodland is listed as an endangered ecological community in NSW. The National Recovery plan estimates about 90% of its pre-European distribution has been lost. Through this project Mid Lachlan Landcare and our project partners will be working with 58 peer leading farmers to:
  • provide farm scale ecological restoration support through on farm visits, planning, actions and follow up.
  • develop an ecological restoration plan for their farms that can be used during this project and past the 7-year project timeframe.
  • improve their understanding of ecosystem function.
  • learn the importance of protecting and enhancing the remnant white box, yellow box, blakely's red gum grassy woodland on their farms.
  • understand the threats to this endangered ecological community
  • include landcare and habitat restoration as part of their farming systems
  • implement 27 targeted ecological restoration projects

 

Murray Darling Wetlands Working Group
Project Title Saving the Australian Painted Snipe and other wetland dependent threatened species in Gayini wetlands
Grant $344,240
Target Landscape-managed species Painted Snipe
Australasian Bittern
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
This project aims to protect and conserve the Australian Painted Snipe and other threatened wetland dependent species, including the Australasian Bittern across the Murrumbidgee landscape. To address critical threats, this project will identify and implement, a water regime for 3 key wetland sites in the Gayini (Nimmie-Caira) floodplain, which will result in improved wetland habitat for successful breeding and fledging. Land management will be improved through removal of deleterious grazing patterns, inappropriate fire regimes and destruction of pests such as pigs and foxes that destroy nests and prey on eggs and young. Significantly, because the long-term aim for Gayini is to place it in Traditional ownership with the Nari Nari people, this project will ensure wise protection and secure these in the wild for generations.

This project will also improve our understanding of how to manage water for these threatened and vulnerable wetland dependent species, and therefore inform and improve management of wetlands across the Murray Darling Basin. By providing many opportunities for education and engagement with a broad sector of the Australian and international community, this project will highlight and showcase a unique land and water management model of partnerships amongst Aboriginal People, conservation groups, business and government, committed to re-establishing threatened species back in the wild of New South Wales.

 

North Coast Local Land Services
Project Title Addressing transformer weed threats
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Subtropical Coastal Floodplain Forest
  2. Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest
  3. Swamp Sclerophyll Forest on Coastal Floodplains
Project Description
The project will secure the conservation values of 29 hectares of 3 coastal floodplain threatened ecological communities by reducing the extent and abundance of transformer weeds. Swamp sclerophyll, swamp oak floodplain forest and subtropical coastal floodplain forest will be restored at 9 sites in the North Coast Bioregion, from Byron Bay to Scotts Head. The project will partner with local governments, landcare and the broader community. The project will also provide opportunities for Aboriginal employment and working on country.

 

Northern Beaches Council
Project Title Saving Sydney's Freshwater Wetlands on Sydney's Northern Beaches
Grant $320,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Sydney Freshwater Wetlands in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
Project Description
This project will increase, sustain and restore wetland reserves which form part of the Sydney Freshwater Wetland in the Sydney Basin Bioregion Threatened Ecological Community (TEC). The emphasis of the works will be in protecting and enhancing the existing TEC by providing linkages to surrounding resilient bushland. By connecting wildlife corridors that contain this TEC, this project will effectively strengthen and bolster their respective distribution and lessen the effects of fragmentation and loss of species diversity. This grant aims to restore additional areas and link those already under restoration within Irrawong Reserve, Nareen Reserve, Dee Why Wetland and Dee Why Lagoon Wildlife Refuge.

 

OzFish Unlimited
Project Title Saving Our Saltmarsh (and other lower Richmond River TECs)
Grant $264,100
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Coastal Saltmarsh
  2. Subtropical Coastal Floodplain Forest
  3. Lowland Rainforest on Floodplain
  4. Swamp Sclerophyll Forest on Coastal Floodplains
Project Description
Saving Our Saltmarsh (and other threatened ecological communities (TECs)) on the lower Richmond River estuary is a project that local OzFish Chapter volunteer fishers are passionate about. Saltmarsh and other lowland TECs that accompany them including Swamp Floodplain Sclerophyll Forest, Coastal Floodplain Forest and Lowland Floodplain Rainforest, are critically important to the health of the lower Richmond River. These communities are important to water quality, bank stability and directly as fish habitat and food source.

OzFish Chapter volunteers, Ballina Shire Council and Jali Local Aboriginal Land Council have noted the historical decline of these communities and loss of their benefits on the Richmond River and have joined forces to act to protect and improve the last remnants of these communities still remaining. Together, using both local expertise and community, the project partnership will work on a combination of both public and private lands to fence, weed, remove rubbish (small and large items), reduce or formalise access points and use vegetative buffers to protect and improve these important TECs.

 

Petaurus Education Group Inc.
Project Title Saving Burrumbuttock's Squirrel Gliders
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species Squirrel Glider
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
In New South Wales, Squirrel Gliders are threatened by the loss, fragmentation and degradation of their habitat. The loss of large old trees, which provide nesting hollows and important food resources, and loss of connectivity between habitats is of particular concern. The rural community has an important part to play in ensuring the long-term future of the species, as much remaining habitat occurs on farmland. On-ground works at Burrumbuttock to address key threats to the species are needed to secure the population by increasing it from 555 individuals to 1000.

A Local Area Management Plan (LAMP) process has been initiated for land in a 10 km radius of Burrumbuttock. The LAMP provides a blueprint of the on-ground work required to secure the long-term viability of the population. From 2013-18, the Burrumbuttock Squirrel Glider LAMP began implementing strategic and prioritised on-ground works in 3 sub-areas with 31 landholders. This new project and phase will build on the success, reputation and partnerships of the previous investment, and continue to work towards securing the Burrumbuttock population of Squirrel Gliders. Three new sub-areas have been identified and an advisory group will work closely with the selected landholders to develop and implement a works program for their properties.

 

Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust
Project Title Northwest NSW Rainforest and Woodland Relict Conservation Project
Grant $343,080
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities
  1. Brigalow within the Brigalow Belt South, Nandewar and Darling Riverine Plains Bioregions
  2. Semi-evergreen Vine Thicket in the Brigalow Belt South and Nandewar Bioregions
  3. Cadellia pentastylis (Ooline) community in the Nandewar and Brigalow Belt South Bioregions
Project Description
Brigalow, Semi-evergreen Vine Thicket, and Ooline (Cadellia pentastylis) are 3 threatened ecological communities (TEC) in the Brigalow Belt South and Nandewar Bioregions that face significant threats from land clearing and habitat fragmentation. With the distinct possibility of needing to restore degraded sites on public and private land in the future, research into seed biology and storage, as well as the propagation techniques of species from these TECs is urgently needed. The ecological aspects of many plant species that occur within these TECs are poorly understood and this project will draw on the scientific research capacity of the Royal Botanic Gardens and Domain Trust and the Australian PlantBank through a strong seed conservation program into the seed biology for high priority species.

Following on from the research program will be a collaborative training and education program conducted with Northern Slopes Landcare Association to engage local community groups, land councils and private landholders to share knowledge and provide confidence for restoration outcomes. Specifically, these will share knowledge on best practice for seed collecting, propagation and revegetation techniques so that community groups can assist in long-term on-ground management of these TECs. This project will be an established exemplar for both a process and protocol at biological and community level for plant conservation in TECs in New South Wales and Australia.

 

South East Local Land Service
Project Title Thinking Inside the Box Gum Grassy Woodlands
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities White Box Yellow Box Blakely's Red Gum Woodland
Project Description
This project will focus on protecting and enhancing White Box Yellow Box Blakely's Red Gum Woodland across the North West section of the South East Local Land Services region (Boorowa, Upper Lachlan and Yass Valley). Box Gum Grassy Woodlands is a highly cleared community that supports a great number of woodland birds, mammals, reptiles and insects. The project will protect and enhance 180ha of remnant vegetation and revegetate a further 80ha (20,000 plants) to increase the connectivity and stepping stones between remnant patches. This project will be highly visible within the community with farm gate signs on the 50 participating properties and the production of 2 media videos demonstrating how land managers can restore and retain their patch of Box Gum Grassy Woodlands.

 

Taree Indigenous Development and Employment (TIDE)
Project Title Protect Littoral Rainforest TEC at Pacific Palms
Grant $247,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Littoral Rainforest in the New South Wales North Coast, Sydney Basin and South East Corner Bioregions
Project Description
Protect Littoral Rainforest Threatened Ecological Community (TEC) across land tenure at Tiona Park and the Booti Booti National Park at Pacific Palms. A partnership between Taree Indigenous Development and Employment (TIDE), Tiona Park, National Parks and Wildlife and MidCoast Council will co-operatively deliver actions that reduce threats to the TEC. The control of Transformer Weeds and Weeds of National Significance that change the floristics and structure of the Littoral Rainforest will be a focus of the project. Potential disturbance from fire and recreational use will also be managed and monitored.

TIDE Aboriginal Rangers will deliver on-ground management actions including weed treatment works providing Aboriginal employment and opportunities to work on and care for country. Volunteer Dune Care groups will support the project undertaking annual activities in the area. Partners will bring significant in-kind contributions to the project that will support the benefits gained into the future.

 

Tweed Shire Council
Project Title Lowland Lyrebird Links in the Tweed Caldera
Grant $341,200
Target Landscape-managed species Albert's Lyrebird
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Lowland Rainforest in the NSW North Coast and Sydney Basin Bioregions
Project Description
The Tweed LGA in the Northern Rivers region of NSW is a stronghold for the Albert's Lyrebird and Lowland Rainforest Threatened Ecological Community (TEC) with both entities reliant on the impressive landscapes of Wollumbin and the Tweed Caldera. This project will contribute to securing Albert's Lyrebird and Lowland Rainforest TEC at Mount Nullum and Numinbah. Selected sites include a mix of Council and private landholdings, well-connected to National Parks and Wildlife (NPWS) Estate and providing important landscape linkages in the Tweed Caldera. Sites have expansive areas of Lowland Rainforest TEC and mature wet sclerophyll forest, hence Albert's Lyrebird habitat, and in the case of Mount Nullum, a significant population of this species outside of NPWS Estate.

Actions to secure these threatened entities include; prioritised habitat restoration, predator monitoring and control, improving scientific knowledge of Albert's Lyrebird at project sites through targeted surveys, raising the ecological knowledge base of Albert's Lyrebird more broadly throughout the Tweed Caldera and raising the species profile in the community through 'citizen science' surveys, and increased landholder capacity and engagement in vertebrate pest control, habitat restoration and private land conservation.

 

University of New England
Project Title Managing the community viability and genetic integrity of woodland TECs
Grant $349,951
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities New England Peppermint Woodland on Basalts and Sediments
Ribbon Gum-Mountain Gum-Snow Gum Grassy Forest/Woodland
Project Description
Revegetation and woodland-friendly farming practices are the main tools to stabilise and restore threatened woodlands and forests of the New England Tablelands. However, replanting from seed sources contaminated by inbreeding, hybridisation or misidentification would be counterproductive. This project will implement monitoring and experiments on the key tree species of 2 threatened ecological communities (TECs): New England Peppermint Woodland, and Ribbon Gum-Mountain Gum-Snow Gum Woodland. We will evaluate the population growth rates, and the impacts of the key threats upon them, using standard techniques of population ecology, including integral population models and individual-based models.

This project will also build upon this knowledge to identify:
  1. low-cost methods to promote seedling recruitment
  2. methods that balance TEC restoration with the economic needs of landowners.
To ensure that the lessons learned from this project not only reach the key stakeholders, but also endure beyond the duration of the proposed project, we will:
  • consult with Local Land Services to refine grazing policies in the Travelling Stock Reserves they manage
  • augment the AskBill information platform to provide personalised woodland management recommendations and scenario analysis to landowners
  • establish genetically-screened seed orchards to provide seed stock for revegetation projects into the future.

 

University of New England
Project Title Dynamic Lagoons: building knowledge and public support to secure threatened Upland Wetlands
Grant $350,000
Target Landscape-managed species N/A
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Upland Wetlands of the Drainage Divide of the New England Tablelands Bioregion
Project Description
The Dynamic Lagoons project will survey and monitor ecological function of threatened Upland Wetlands on the Northern Tablelands to build knowledge of the many benefits these unique wetlands provide. A key part of the project will be establishing an evidence-based public engagement and education program to raise awareness of the importance of wet-dry phenologies in Upland Wetlands and the critical threats and impacts that affect wetland ecological function. Long-term commitment to wetland conservation will be established through conservation agreements with community stakeholders (e.g. landholders, councils, schools).

The project will build on a baseline survey of 28 private and public lagoons conducted in 2017-18 across the Northern Tablelands. Ecological effects of different land-uses will be investigated alongside experimental restoration techniques such as fencing and livestock reduction. Engagement highlighting the Aboriginal cultural values, ecological benefits and best management practices will be promoted through the Tablelands via art, field days and a management manual.

 

University of Newcastle
Project Title Improving conservation of vulnerable amphibian fauna in protected habitats
Grant $300,627
Target Landscape-managed species Stuttering frog
Davies' tree frog
Giant Burrowing Frog
Target Threatened Ecological Communities N/A
Project Description
Securing the survival of threatened Australian frogs in the wild remains a challenging task as the impact of multiple stressors remains unmeasured. Key threats include habitat degradation, predation and disease. Population declines have been detected in a range of environments, most concerningly in pristine systems and areas protected as conservation reserves. A comprehensive understanding of the threats to vulnerable amphibians is required in order to develop and apply successful management actions to protect vulnerable amphibians in the national parks and wilderness areas created to conserve biodiversity.

This project combines conservation science with citizen science to undertake toolbox actions for 5 landscape-managed frogs suspected to be susceptible to a range of threats including infection by the amphibian fungal pathogen chytrid, predation by aquatic organisms and stream pollution.

 

University of New South Wales
Project Title Implementing an action toolbox to conserve Coastal Upland Swamps in the Sydney Basin
Grant $349,757
Target Landscape-managed species Giant Dragonfly
Giant Burrowing Frog
Red-crowned Toadlet
Target Threatened Ecological Communities Coastal Upland Swamps in the Sydney Basin Bioregion
Project Description
The project is designed to address all threats identified in the draft action toolbox for the Endangered Coastal Upland Swamps (CUS) of the Sydney Basin Bioregion. In partnership with land management agencies, we will resolve uncertainties about the impacts of critical mining and climate change threats (listed Key Threatening Processes). Decadal monitoring of swamp hydrology and ecology will build a robust evidence base on the impact of longwall mining and quantify the rate and magnitude of ecological response. Findings will inform decisions-making by industry, land management and planning agencies. Projection of climate change effects will inform prioritisation and conservation of climate refuges. Site-level clearing, soil and pest-related disturbances will also be monitored.

The project includes new research to support fire and disease management in CUS. Causes of loss of diversity from over-abundance of large shrubs will also be investigated. The project also offers quantifiable mechanisms to reduce threats from fire, disease and shrub encroachment in partnership with land managers. The project will build on previous work and develop an ongoing research and monitoring portfolio that will directly and adaptively inform on-ground management.

Funding model

The $9 million program funds one round of competitive grants to support a number of 7-year projects. Grants of up to $350,000 each will be available over the first 4.5 years of 7-year projects.

The grant program has been designed to see the program and the applicant resource the first 4.5 years of the project, with the remaining 2.5 years resourced solely by the applicant. The funding model assumes that for most conservation projects higher costs occur upfront in the first few years, with fewer resources needed when the project transitions to a maintenance phase.

At least 10% of the project value must be quarantined for monitoring of project activities and outcomes.

Further information on species toolboxes may be found on the SoS database.

Further information

For further information, please contact the Environmental Trust.

Phone: 02 8837 6093
Email: info@environmentaltrust.nsw.gov.au

Page last updated: 07 February 2019