The Australian state of Victoria is one of the major tourist destinations in the world. The tourist attractions include nature, sanctuary, beaches, museums, and magnificent buildings among other attractions. Victoria is characterized by magnificent parks and places that offer an appeal to both local and international tourists all year round. The abundant camping sites offer wilderness accommodation for people visiting the park. The state of Victoria is located in the southeast Australia and is one of the most densely populated states in the country. Victoria is a topographically, geologically, and climatically diverse state characterized by different climates despite its small size.
Ecoregions Of Victoria
Victoria is an ecologically diverse state despite its small size. The state is characterized by several ecological regions including the Great Victoria Desert which extends from Eastern Goldfield area across central Australia to South Australia. The ecoregion is arid with seasonal rainfall of below 250 mm and a hot summer temperature of between 320 and 350C. THE Southeast Australia temperate forest ecoregion covers the most of the southern Victoria extending to the Tableland regions of New South Wales. This ecoregion is characterized by seasonal rainfall concentrated mainly in the winter. The northern portion of the temperate forest consists of small hills of the Dividing Range. The Victoria Plains Tropical Savanna ecoregion consist of plains which are punctuated with sandstone outcrop and dominated by eucalyptus woodland.
The Wild Flora And Fauna Of Victoria
Victoria is home to thousands of flora and fauna species. There are over 4300 native plants and 950 native animals in Victoria. The parks contain a broad range of habitats which play a vital role in the protection of the high biodiversity. Some of the flora and fauna species are unique to the particular areas of Victoria while other species are common throughout the state. The wildlife population in Victoria is very dynamic and varies in distribution depending on the past and present land use, climate, availability of food, and predation. Victoria is home to 201 reptile species, 139 mammal species, 450 species of birds, and several amphibians. Some of the common animals found in Victoria include flying-foxes, kangaroos, koalas, echidnas, and 27 species of snakes.
Threats To Victoria's Wildlife
Several factors threaten the survival of wildlife in the state of Victoria. Humans are the major threats to the wildlife through the different adverse actions on land. Uncontrolled grazing has affected the plant community and damaged fragile wetlands and moss bed community. Gold mining in the Victoria Alps has caused a major impact on the health of the ecosystem. The mining has led to the destruction of vegetation and plant species and diversion of streams and rivers. The frequent fires have also destroyed several plant species in the Victoria Alps. Illegal poaching and hunting remain a threat to several mammals and reptiles in the Victoria parks leading to significant reduction of some species such as the kangaroos. Other threats include pests, cultivation, and invasive plants.
Establishment Of National Parks In Victoria
Victoria contains 2850 separate protected area covering a total land area of 15,163 sq miles or 17.3% of the state’s area. There are 45 national parks in Victoria covering 10,820 sq miles managed Park Victoria which is a government agency. The agency was established in 1996 under the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change. The national parks in Victoria have grown from 13 in 1952 to the current 45 due to the combined effort of the Land Conservation Council, Environmental Conservation Council, and Victorian Environmental Assessment Council. The reservation of each of the national parks in Victoria is under the National Park Acts.
Significance Of National Parks In Victoria
National parks in Victoria are important in the conservation efforts in Australia. Thousands of wildlife species are preserved in the parks across Victoria. The parks are also a famous tourist attraction with almost 70 million tourists visiting the parks every year. Revenue generated from the parks contributes significantly to the growth of Australia’s GDP. The national parks are also centers for biological research, especially of the species unique to Victoria and Australia.
The National Parks Of Victoria, Australia: Significance In Conservation Of Wildlife
|Rank||National park name||Area (in acre)||Declared as a national park|
|2||Murray-Sunset||1,560,000||26 April 1979|
|4||Grampians||420,000||1 July 1984|
|6||Great Otway||250,000||11 December 2005|
|7||Snowy River||244,000||26 April 1979|
|8||Croajingolong||216,000||26 April 1979|
|9||Yarra Ranges||187,810||December 1995|
|10||Wilsons Promontory||125,000||July 1898|
|11||Hattah-Kulkyne||123,490||7 June 1960|
|15||Lake Eildon||68,600||4 June 1997|
|17||Errinundra||66,410||15 July 1988|
|18||Kinglake||55,300||7 March 1928|
|19||Chiltern-Mount Pilot||53,000||30 October 2002|
|21||Burrowa-Pine Mountain||45,000||16 May 1978|
|22||Greater Bendigo||42,030||30 October 2002|
|24||Mitchell River||35,430||December 1962|
|25||Kara Kara||34,600||30 October 2002|
|26||Baw Baw||33,000||April 1979|
|27||Heathcote-Graytown||31,710||30 October 2002|
|28||French Island||27,000||28 June 1998|
|30||Lower Goulburn||23,000||June 2010|
|31||Brisbane Ranges||19,070||15 August 1973|
|32||Mount Eccles||15,100||7 June 1960|
|33||Terrick Terrick||14,530||June 1988|
|34||Dandenong Ranges||7,940||13 December 1987|
|36||Mornington Peninsula||6,640||1 December 1975|
|38||Tarra-Bulga||4,980||17 June 1986|
|39||Port Campbell||4,300||5 May 1964|
|40||Mount Richmond||4,280||7 June 1960|
|42||Morwell||1,400||26 November 1966|
|44||Churchill||670||12 February 1941|
|45||Organ Pipes||380||12 March 1972|