Projects

The Great Victoria Desert Biodiversity Trust is an environmental initiative which conserves and increases knowledge of biodiversity in the Great Victoria Desert.

Current projects

Grass Leaf Hakea ~ Hakea francisiana

Marble Gum ~ Eucalyptus gongylocarpa

Landscape Conservation Initiative

The Landscape Conservation Initiative (LCI) objective is to reduce the extent and intensity of wildfires, and the impacts of invasive animals on threatened species by monitoring the effectiveness of managed fire.

Key questions:

  • How effective is patch burning for protecting species with fire sensitive habitats from regular damaging, large, ‘hot’ bushfires over the short-term (e.g. 5 years)?
  • How effective is patch burning coupled with introduced predator control at benefiting the biodiversity over the short-term (e.g. 5 years)?
  • What will be the response of introduced predators to an annual control program?

The LCI is based on the premise, or hypothesis under test in this adaptive management program, that the combination of large fires that destroy habitat and expose animals to predation by introduced predators increases the risk of local extinction of fauna with late-seral habitat requirements such as sandhill dunnarts and malleefowl.

Therefore, good fire management – and a reduction in the density of introduced predators – should result in an increase in the density and distribution of native fauna.

Increased burns of smaller size (relative to the scale of current wildfires) – as was the practice of the Tradition Owners – together with a level of introduced predator control, should benefit the biodiversity in a landscape of the GVD by retaining structurally-diverse habitats and therefore improving refugia for fauna.

Past projects

Anditi Malleefowl Mound Lidar Detection Project

In December 2018, the Great Victoria Desert Biodiversity Trust Fund (GVDBT) entered into an agreement with Anditi.

This project was for aerial laser scanning and aerial photography of approximatley1000km² of the Great Victoria Desert in a series of corridors provided by the GVDBT as a precursor to finding existing and new Malleefowl mounds through automated analysis. Anditi sub-contracted McMullen Nolan Group (MNG) to complete the aerial survey using their high accuracy Riegl LiDAR system.

Once MNG had processed the raw laser point cloud to a 3D LAS point cloud, Anditi were then able to load the point cloud into the Anditi Engine software and classify the data for analysis for Malleefowl mound-like features.

Inactive Malleefowl mound

Sandhill Dunnart Spinifex Habitat

Greening Australia

In 2015/16, Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW), now the Department of Biodiversity, Parks and Attractions (DBCA) was commissioned by GVDBT to produce survey and monitoring guidelines for the Sandhill Dunnart (SHD) and define a baseline survey design for the species. Subsequent to the completion of these documents, the GVDBT commissioned Greening Australia to conduct a baseline survey for this species, in accordance with the guidelines and survey design produced by DPaW.

The overarching objective of the Project was to gather information on Sandhill Dunnart distribution and habitat preferences through a field survey that builds upon the previous work conducted for the GVDBT. More specifically, the objectives of the Project were to:

  • undertake surveys for the Sandhill Dunnart at 20 sites across the Survey Area, in accordance with the SHD baseline survey design and recommended survey methodology (DPaW 2016);
  • collect environmental data to allow for investigation of the relationship between SHD and relevant environmental variables;
  • collect opportunistic data regarding occurrence of other fauna species (including conservation significant fauna whilst undertaking SHD surveys;
  • provide a baseline dataset of SHD occurrence suitable for use in future analysis, survey and monitoring.
  • work collaboratively with the GVDBT and foster inter-organisation knowledge transfer (ie. contribute to broader programmes or datasets, where possible).

Need more info?

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