We all know Trust for Nature plays a long game. Covenants protect ecological assets in perpetuity.
In the Wimmera, two covenants are being negotiated which have been a long time in the making, helped along by Trust for Nature’s long term relationship with the owners.
In one case, a parcel of family-owned land was jointly owned—half was farmed and the other half was bush. One of the landowners wanted to protect the bush, while the other landowner wanted to farm. Assistance was sought to subdivide the farmland from bushland so the bushland could be protected. Due to the long relationship the Trust has with the owners, everyone felt comfortable in agreeing to subdivide and protect the bush that remained and fortunately with support from the Victorian Government’s Sustainability Fund, the Trust was able to contribute to funding the subdivision.
This resulted in the owners agreeing to put a conservation covenant on 324 ha of significant and intact habitat which has never been cleared. The native vegetation being protected provides habitat for important species such as the endangered Malleefowl.
The other property is also a large bush block (260 ha) that has never been cleared and had been family owned. Family circumstances meant it had to be sold, so the Trust worked with the owners to promote the property to someone who was interested in buying land for conservation. This paid off and it was subsequently sold to a new owner who is putting a conservation covenant on it. This project was funded with the support of the Victorian Government.
The Trust was set up in 1972, making it one of Victoria’s oldest and most trusted conservation organisations. A long term presence in rural and regional areas has been critical to our ability to form long lasting relationships with landowners and being in the position to help them with decisions that families face about protecting their properties for future generations, even after it’s sold.
For more information about projects in the south west contact Adam Blake (03) 8631 5888 or firstname.lastname@example.org