Commonwealth of Australia 2000




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National Estate

Identification and Assessment

in the

West Region

of Victoria

January 2000


Prepared by officials to support the West Regional Forest Agreement Process

Published by the joint Commonwealth and Victorian Regional Forest Agreement (RFA) Steering Committee.
Commonwealth of Australia 2000
The views expressed in this report are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Commonwealth of Australia or Victoria. The Commonwealth and Victoria do not accept responsibility for any advice or information in relation to this material.
Copies are available from:

Environment Australia

John Gorton Building

King Edward Terrace

Parkes ACT 2600

Phone (02) 6274 1111
or

Natural Resources and Environment

8 Nicholson Street

East Melbourne Vic 3002

Phone (03) 9637 8080
Copies will also be available through the Environment Resources Information Network on its World Wide Web Server. Contact http: //www.rfa.gov.au
For further information about this report contact the Commonwealth Forests Taskforce. Phone (02) 6271 5128.
This work is copyright. It may be produced in whole or in part for study or training purposes subject to the inclusion of acknowledgment of the source and no commercial usage or sale. Reproduction for purposes other than those listed above requires written permission of the Commonwealth and Victorian RFA Steering Committee.
Requests should be addressed to:

Commonwealth and Victorian RFA Steering Committee

C/- Commonwealth Forests Taskforce

Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet

3-5 National Circuit

Barton Act 2600

Phone: (02) 6271 5182

ISBN No: 0 642 54664 9

Foreword

This report provides information on the results of the assessment of national estate values related to forest environments. The information contributed to the comprehensive regional assessment of the West Region of Victoria. Places with national estate value are components of the natural or cultural environment that have aesthetic, historic, scientific or social significance, or other special value for future generations as well as the present community.


The comprehensive regional assessment of the West Region has examined environment and heritage, and social and economic values. Information on the range of these values with the exception of national estate values, is contained in the two volumes of the West Victoria Comprehensive Regional Assessment Report, published in July and October 1999.
The information gathered in the comprehensive regional assessment projects including the national estate studies will be used in the development of a Regional Forest Agreement for West Victoria. Further information on the approaches to the development of the Regional Forest Agreement will be provided in the public consultation paper West Regional Forest Agreement Consultation Paper, to be published soon.

Contents





Foreword iv

Contents v

Summary 1

Chapter 1: Introduction 3

1.1 The National Estate 3

1.2 The National Estate Assessment 4

Chapter 2: National Estate Cultural Values 7

2.1 Introduction 7

2.1.1Themes of human history 8

2.1.2 Assessment criteria for cultural values 13

2.1.3 Community consultation 13

2.2 Aboriginal Heritage Values 14

2.2.1 Background 14

2.2.2 Aboriginal heritage values - the approach 15

2.2.3 The ongoing program for Aboriginal heritage 17

2.3 Social Value Assessment 18

2.3.1 Data sources 18

2.3.2 Methodology 19

2.3.3 Results 21

2.4 Aesthetic Value Assessment 23

2.4.1 Data sources 23

2.4.2 Methodology 23

2.4.3 Results 25

2.5 Historic Value Assessment 26

2.5.1 Data sources and data audit 26

2.5.2 Historic places research 27

2.5.3 Methodology 28

2.5.4 Results 30

Chapter 3: National Estate Natural Values 31

3.1 Introduction 31

3.1.1 Assessment criteria for natural values 31

3.1.2 Major biophysical characteristics of the Region 32

3.2 Extensive Natural Values 33

3.2.1 Natural Landscapes 34

3.2.2 Undisturbed Catchments 36

3.2.3 Wilderness 36

3.2.4 Old-growth forest 37

3.3 Flora 38

3.3.1 Endemic flora 39

3.3.2 Flora at the limit of their range 40

3.3.3 Flora with disjunct distributions 41

3.3.4 Relictual Ecological Vegetation Classes 41

3.3.5 Phylogenetically significant flora 42

3.3.6 Refugia from climate change 44

3.3.7 Contemporary flora refugia 44

3.3.8 Successional stages 46

3.3.9 Remnant vegetation 48

3.3.10 Modelled flora richness 49

3.3.11 Rare or threatened flora 49

3.3.12 Rare Ecological Vegetation Classes 50

3.3.13 Rare old-growth forest 51

3.3.14 Principal characteristics of Ecological Vegetation Classes 51

3.4 Fauna 52

3.4.1 Data sources 52

3.4.2 Endemic fauna 54

3.4.3 Fauna at the limit of their range 55

3.4.4 Fauna with disjunct distributions 57

3.4.5 Refuges from climate change 58

3.4.6 Relict primitive (Gondwanic) fauna 58

3.4.7 Key fauna habitats 59

3.4.8 Contemporary fauna refuges 63

3.4.9 Fauna species richness 63

3.4.10 Rare or threatened fauna 64

3.5 Other Natural Values 65

3.5.1 Geological and geomorphological values 65

3.5.2 Natural history sites 66

Chapter 4: National Estate Outcomes 71

4.1 National Estate Outcomes: Cultural Values 71

4.2 Future Research: Cultural Values 71

4.3 National Estate Outcomes: Natural Values 72

4.4 Future Research: Natural Values 73

4.5 Management of National Estate Values 74

References 75

Glossary 79

Acronyms 79

Definitions 80

Appendices 87

Appendix A: The Australian Heritage Commission Criteria for the Register of the National Estate 87

Appendix B: Forest Places in the Register of the National Estate 89

Appendix C: Consultancy Reports Commissioned 92

Appendix D: Consultation with Aboriginal People and Issues raised 93

Appendix E: Organisations Invited to Participate in the Community Heritage Workshops 96

Appendix F: Participants in the Community Heritage Workshops 100

Appendix G: Participants in the Forest Critics Workshops 104

Appendix H: Indicative National Estate Places of Social Value 105

Appendix I: Indicative National Estate Places of Aesthetic Value 106

Appendix J: Indicative National Estate Places of Historic Value 107

Appendix K: Flora Species Occurring in the West RFA Region with A1 and B1 Values 109

Appendix L: Fauna Species Occurring in the West RFA Region and Showing those with A1 and B1 Values 122

Appendix M Metadata Reference 133




TABLES




Table 2.1: Thresholds for National Estate Social Value Significance 22

Table 3.1: Biophysical naturalness code decision rules. 34

Table 3.2: Indicative natural landscape areas. 35

Table 3.3: Phylogenetically significant flora. 43

Table 3.4: EVCs identified as refugia from long term climate change. 44

Table 3.5: Refuges from frequent fire and drought. 45

Table 3.6: Patterns of primary and secondary succession in the West. 47

Table 3.7: Fauna taxa exhibiting endemism. 55

Table 3.8: Fauna taxa at a limit of their biogeographic range. 56

Table 3.9: Fauna taxa with disjunct populations. 57

Table 3.10: Wetlands of national and international importance. 60

Table 3.11: Significant waterbird breeding sites. 61

Table 3.12: Precision codes used in defining type localities. 67

Table 3.13: Criteria for identifying research, teaching and reference/benchmark sites. 68

Table 3.14: Reference Areas in the West. 69



MAPS

Map 1. Registered and Interim Listed National Estate Places

Map 2. Social Value

Map 3. Aesthetic Value

Map 4. Historic Value

Map 5. Natural Landscapes

Map 6. Wilderness Quality

Map 7. Old-growth Forest

Map 8. Endemic Flora

Map 9. Limit of Range Flora

Map 10. Disjunct Flora Populations

Map 11. Relictual Ecological Vegetation Classes

Map 12. Phylogenetically Significant Flora

Map 13. Refugia from Climatic Change

Map 14. Contemporary Flora Refugia

Map 15. Remnant Vegetation

Map 16. Areas of High Modelled Flora Species Richness

Map 17. Rare Flora

Map 18. Rare Old-growth Forest

Map 19. Areas Demonstrating Principal Characteristics of EVCs

Map 20. Endemic Fauna

Map 21. Limit of Range Fauna

Map 22. Disjunct Fauna Populations

Map 23. Key Fauna Habitats

Map 24. Rare Fauna

Map 25. Natural History Sites




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