Did you know? Victoria has around 100,000 different native plant and animal species.
Many are threatened or endangered: 21% of bird species, 18% of mammals, 39% of frogs and 21% of plants are listed as threatened in Victoria, and are on the downhill slide towards extinction.
This is staggering. Even species like kookaburras, willy wagtails and river red gums are not as common as they used to be. They are losing their habitat as urban areas develop and expand.
Healthy ecosystems and rich biodiversity are vital for the liveability of our university community and our city. Protecting and enhancing biodiversity will support the health and wellbeing of our community and contribute to effective climate change adaptation actions.
See biodiversity on campus for yourself
There are many opportunities to see and experience wildlife at all seven campuses of the University of Melbourne.
In daylight hours, you can see and hear many different native birds, reptiles and insects. Towards evening, flocks of colourful, noisy rainbow lorikeets search for roosting sites and grey-headed flying foxes and possums also become active. Nocturnal birds such as the tawny frogmouth and other various owl species have also been observed. A number of different species of frogs and locusts can be heard at any time calling in damp areas.
Remember: there is a greater likelihood of seeing native fauna wherever native flora resides.
BUT: Do not feed the animals
Enjoy our biodiversity, but it’s important to remember not to feed the wildlife. Doing so can cause serious harm. All Australian native animals are protected under the Wildlife Act 1975; it is an offence to take, harm or disturb wildlife.
Your University is an ecosystem
By considering and supporting University of Melbourne as an ecosystem, we will actively foster connections between people, plants, animals and the landscape, to create the legacy of a resilient, balanced and healthy urban environment for future generations to enjoy, and to nurture delight in the natural environment.
Support biodiversity awareness by taking part in the GSA Sustainability Prize!
If you capture a smartphone photo of any Australian native species of flora or fauna, on any UoM campus, you can enter the picture in the GSA Sustainability Prize. The picture that wins first place wins $1,000 in cash (and a free pass to the Ecocity World Summit in Melbourne)!
Jill is Programs Coordinator at GSA.