On snow gum watch

The snow gum has been identified as a target species to monitor.

Dieback identified in snow gum populations on Mount Macedon and surrounds have been flagged as a cause for concern.

Macedon Ranges mayor Jennifer Anderson said the snow gum had been identified as a target species to monitor.

She said the council wanted to develop a better understanding of where they occurred, and their population health.

“Council is working with ecologists, landcare groups and the Arthur Rylah Institute to record and monitor the health of snow gum populations across the shire and potential local climate change impacts,” she said.

“Snow gums have excellent readily identifiable features, which mean they are a great plant species for citizen science, where the public is actively involved in the research activity.

“Council is inviting landholders across the shire to be part of a community project to help us understand and monitor the local ecology of an iconic eucalyptus species and the local impacts of climate change, while building community awareness and knowledge.”

In the Macedon Ranges, populations of snow gum, occur in montane grassy woodland and plains grassy woodland across the peaks and plains of the shire.

Using a citizen science approach, the council and its community partners are looking to map and monitor population health on private land on Mount Macedon, in the Cobaw Biolink and across the Riddells Creek, Ashbourne and Baynton-Sidonia areas, where snow gums are known to occur.

Get involved by visiting the council’s snow gum monitoring webpage: mrsc.vic.gov.au/Biodiversity where a printable brochure is available to explain how to identify a snow gum tree and how to share your records.

If you are having trouble identifying the trees or need help, one of the project team may be able to visit your property and help with identification and measurements.

For details contact the council’s environment team on 5422 0333, or email: environment@mrsc.vic.gov.au.

All records must be received by April 17.