From Maldon to the Mallee

Location: Maldon, Walmer and Walpeup.

Size: Three properties totalling 142 hectares

Traditional Owners:

Dja Dja Warrung and Wergaia

Landholders: Albert and Eleanor Wright

Why we bought the properties

Both Maldon and Walmer blocks have been heavily harvested and mined in the gold rush days. Both would also have been grazed after that.

The main Maldon block had been totally untouched for the 20 years prior to us purchasing in 2010. The Walmer block also had 200 olive trees and and old uninhabitable house upon purchase all of which have since been removed.

We believe the only activity on the Walpeup block would have been grazing, as no clearing is evident.

Our motivation to purchase was both personal. We wanted as natural a piece of bush as possible in the Maldon area and we have probably achieved that. The adjoining Walmer block was purchased to protect our privacy.

The Walpeup block was purchased simply because we love the Mallee and wanted to have our own small slice of it.

All covenants were carried out as we believe it is of utmost importance to protect valuable habitat for now and into the future.

Previous use

We believe the only activity on the Walpeup block would have been grazing, as no clearing is evident.

Our motivation to purchase was both personal. We wanted as natural a piece of bush as possible in the Maldon area and we have probably achieved that. The adjoining Walmer block was purchased to protect our privacy.

The Walpeup block was purchased simply because we love the Mallee and wanted to have our own small slice of it.

All covenants were carried out as we believe it is of utmost importance to protect valuable habitat for now and into the future.

We had owned a working farm in Dunolly prior to purchasing Maldon. It comprised of a mount, hills and flat areas. We decided to covenant the 240ha of bush and grasslands and keep the remaining arable 162ha for cropping and grazing.

We carried out extensive revegetation on this property and feel immensely proud of the results today. We did however discover travel and this property became too high maintenance for us. This was a big factor in purchasing Maldon as it was natural and posed little management.

Rare and endangered species

In Maldon/Walmer we have large old trees including Eucalyptus goniocalyx, E. macrorhyncha and E. polyanthemos. There is also a high diversity of native forbs, lilies and orchids.

Fauna includes Square-tailed Kite, Powerful Owl, Swift Parrot, Chestnut-rumped Heathwren, Speckled Warbler, Brush-tailed Phascogale (pictured right) and Short-beaked Echidna.

In Walpeup we are treated to visits from Regent Parrots, Southern Scrub-robins and Hooded Robins.

Restoration works

In Maldon/Walmer we attempted some erosion control, laying down logs, planting, filling small points with discarded vegetation, all with limited success. Planting around house area has yielded good results.

We have undertaken planting with the assistance of Connecting Country on the Walmer block, and removal of weed species (blackberry, gorse, olive trees, wheel cactus) with good success.

For the African Weed Orchid we have been poisoning, digging out and pulling off heads of with nil success so far. We have not done anything major at Walpeup except for a little weed and pest animal control.

We LOVE covenanting properties and hope to maybe do some more in the future.

ABOUT THE COVENANTORS

Both retired police officers, now enjoy bird watching and photography, plant appreciation and identification and travel, both domestic and international.We are both involved with and on the committee of our local Landcare group.

We live on our Maldon block, built a house in 2013, three years after purchasing the block. We are self sufficient in power (off grid solar) and water. We spend on average about one week in four at our Walpeup block where we have a cosy caravan, a small shed and a rainwater tank.

Land Covenantors Victoria acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Victoria and their deep connections to land, water and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today. Contact: info@landcovenantors.org.au

LCV is supported by:

LCV is a Registered Charity. ABN: 28727715232