Protecting nature in our city

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Did you know that the City of Melbourne is home to fluffy-pawed spiders, pobblebonk frogs and matchbox-sized microbats? 

In fact, hundreds of different birds, reptiles, mammals, frogs, insects and fish species call our city home, along with a vast array of plants. 

But climate change is placing significant pressure on our precious native animals and plants. That’s why it’s more important than ever to take care of our urban wildlife and vegetation. 

Councillor Cathy Oke, chair of the environment portfolio, said the City of Melbourne had recently declared a climate and biodiversity emergency.

“We’re leading the way on ambitious and urgent action on climate change. We know that rising temperatures mean we could lose 35 per cent of our trees in the next 20 years,” Cr Oke said.

“Some species of elms and indigenous eucalypts won’t survive – and these eucalypts are crucial habitat for many of the animals that live in our city.”

“That’s why we’re greening the city. Every year, we plant at least 3000 trees to grow our urban forest. Not only does this help keep our city cool, but it also provides our wildlife with much needed habitat.”

“We’ve also installed hollows in several trees across the city and over the past two years we’ve planted 16,000 sqm of new native grasses, shrubs and wildflowers. Both of these measures create more homes for our native animals.”

Cr Oke said City of Melbourne had achieved a lot but more action was needed.

“We need to work at a faster pace to prevent irreversible damage to our city, people, plants, animals and economy. We need to work together,” she said. 

“We need to protect our beautiful and important native plants and animals. Healthy ecosystems are vital for the liveability of our city: we need nature and nature needs us.”

As part of this, the City of Melbourne is encouraging residents to help look after their urban wildlife, even if they only have a balcony. 

From planting native wildflowers in pots and gardening organically, to installing bee hotels and nesting boxes in your garden, there are lots of easy ways to make your home more wildlife-friendly.

For more information: 

melbourne.vic.gov.au/urbannature

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