Your guide to the insects of Central Victoria

Male Lasioglossum (Parasphecodes) on a Euryomyrtus ramosissima (Rosy Heath Myrtle). For reference, the flowers of this species are 6 – 10 mm in size © John Walter

Our gardens and bushlands are host to a wide range of beneficial insects, many of whom go unnoticed in your daily life due to their size. Local pollinators are adapted to spread the reproductive material from local plant to local plant. As many of our indigenous flowers are tiny, so to are the majority of our insect pollinators.

While you may not always see them, in the warmer months our gardens, farms and bush blocks are abuzz with all manner of local pollinators, including the more obvious butterflies, flies, bees, bugs and beetles.

This local guide is designed to help you identify these beneficial insects (and a whole lot more) and gives an idea of the type of plants you might find them in, should you decide to follow our advice and go looking.

The handy booklet is in the same format as local Council’s floraweeds and bird guides, and features over 220 local insect species in full colour.

The Upper Campaspe Landcare Network led the project to develop the guide, with partners Wombat Forestcare and local councils, Macedon Ranges, Bendigo, Mount Alexander and Hepburn.

The guide features a selection of pollinating insects observed during onground surveying across the Upper Campaspe Catchment by the UCLN Pollinator Project over nearly two years. Additional insect species are also included to demonstrate the incredible diversity of insect life found within our region.

Beautifully photographed by John Walter, Gayle Osborne, Lynda Wilson, Euan Moore, Albert Golden, Andrew Allen, Brian Bainbridge, Shiloh Ritchie and Roger Standen, these insects are likely to be observed if you sit quietly for 10 minutes in your garden or nearby bushland.

The guide is available at Council offices and is being distributed by the UCLN Landcare groups.

The effects of drought on biodiversity with John Harris – online 7pm Thursday 18 August

Join us online with ecologist John Harris of Wildlife & Ecology as he discusses the impacts of drought on biodiversity

As one of the driest populated continents on earth, Australia will never eliminate the physical or psychological threat or effects of drought.

As severe weather events become more frequent, and the effects of climate change alter natural ecosystems, building human and environmental drought resilience into our community and land management practices will become increasingly important to the continuation of functional ecosystems and biodiversity.

Join John Harris online as he talks about the impacts of drought on biodiversity, and opens the conversation about steps we can take to assist local biodiversity.

Tickets are available through Eventbrite:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-effects-of-drought-on-biodiversity-with-ecologist-john-harris-tickets-373080302227

John Harris (BASc, GDipEd) – Director and Principal Zoologist / Ecologist

Throughout his career, John has worked in both the environmental and education sectors, often combining the two. He has been in the education sector for over 20 years as a primary school teacher and secondary Biology/Science teacher as well as Environment and Sustainability Manager. John has also worked for National Parks and Wildlife in Queensland as a ranger, the Department of Conservation and Environment (now DELWP – Vic) and is currently our Principal ecological consultant

As an environmental consultant, John has worked with a number of larger consultancies as a senior environmental consultant or subcontractor. He has been involved in flora and fauna surveys, habitat hectare assessments, vegetation mapping, environmental audits, flora and fauna salvaging (spotter/catcher) and as sustainability adviser in Victoria and interstate. He has authored many assessment reports, flora and fauna management plans, EPBC Act (Commonwealth) and Environmental Effects Statement (Victoria) referrals.

John has had vast experience with the ResourceSmart Schools program in Victoria. He has presenting at conferences and workshops across Australia and published a number of articles on environmental education for teaching and parent journals. He is also a past president of Environmental Education Victoria (formerly the Victorian Association for Environmental Education). Combined with his experience in schools, John has also been actively involved in environmental education in the community as a guest speaker and workshop presenter at various organizations including the Field Naturalists Club of Victoria, gardening clubs, Landcare groups, scouts, “friends of” groups and churches. He has also presented workshops for a number of local governments including the City of Whittlesea, Manningham City Council and Frankston City Council.

ABOUT THIS EVENT

This event is funded by the NRM Drought Resilience Program – Grants. The grants support projects that contribute to improved drought resilience of agricultural landscapes through experimentation in NRM practices, systems and approaches that go beyond current best practice.

This event forms part of the Upper Campaspe Landcare Network’s NRM Drought Resilience Grant project – Empowering an informed and engaged community to allow for the creation of connecting pollinator corridors through the Upper Campaspe Catchment to ensure environmental resilience and improved functionality of drought threatened agricultural landscapes.

Image credit -https://assets.nationbuilder.com/veganaustralia/pages/17654/meta_images/original/VictoriaDrought.jpg?1598972122

Membership Renewal 2022/23 – Information for Member Groups

Landcare Victoria Inc. is your state Landcare association. Together with around 600 other Landcare groups and networks, your membership of Landcare Victoria gives your group access to Landcare Victoria’s services and contributes to the strong foundation community Landcare needs grow and thrive in Victoria.

Your membership fees are a very important contribution to the operations of Landcare Victoria, comprising about 39% of total revenue in 2021. Support from Australian and Victorian government programs and philanthropic donations helps to subsidies services to keep membership fees as low as possible.

Services for our Member Groups

Insurance
Each year, Landcare Victoria organizes cost effective insurance cover for Member Groups. Our insurance package protects Member Groups and their committees against damages claims that may arise from Landcare activities. The comprehensive cover Landcare Victoria obtains meets the requirements of government grant programs. Landcare Victoria staff frequently provide Member Groups with information and advice about insurance cover, referring issues to our brokers as required.

Grants auspicing
A foundational purpose of the establishment of Landcare Victoria was to provide a legal framework that allows many Landcare groups to operate without the need to formally incorporate. About half of our membership is unincorporated and often require Landcare Victoria’s support to auspice their grants. In 2021, Landcare Victoria provided auspicing support for over $1M in this way.

Communications and advocacy
Landcare Victoria is your voice for Landcare. We advocate on your behalf for supportive policies and funding at the state and national level. We share the Landcare story – the story of your success – through our website, various social media channels and media liaison. With a state election approaching at the end of 2022, your support for Landcare Victoria’s advocacy on your behalf is more important than ever.

Advice and Liaison
Every day, Landcare Victoria receives enquiries about Landcare from the public, business and government about how to best engage with Landcare. In response, we do our best to build confidence in the value and purpose of Landcare. We also work to develop projects and partnerships for the benefit of community Landcare in Victoria. In addition, we regularly provide advice to Member Groups on a variety of topics including starting and operating a Landcare group, record-keeping and reporting requirements, banking, incorporation and other legal structures, understanding association rules, applying for funding, merging, and winding up.

Governance
Like every other organisation, Landcare Victoria incurs expenditure on governance of the organisation. We are very fortunate to have a voluntary Board who collectively offer many hundreds of hours of their time. Covering
meeting and travel costs, securing professional advice, Board administration and statutory reporting are vitally important to the efficient and effective functioning of Landcare Victoria.

Data management
With a large membership, Landcare Victoria has a big task to ensure our membership records are up to date and accurate. We do this to ensure we have the information we need to support your Member Group, and to meet our statutory obligations. We are making steady improvements to our data and systems and always looking for ways to make the exchange of information with members as efficient as possible. This data underpins almost all that we do for our Member Groups.

How we used your membership fees in 2021
  • Insurance – 26%
  • Advice and Liaison – 11%
  • Data management – 18%
  • Grants auspicing – 8%
  • Communications and advocacy – 17%
  • Governance – 20%
Membership Fees for 2022/23 – A new and simpler fee structure

During 2021/22 Landcare Victoria reviewed the way it levies fees on members. We concluded that the existing system was complicated and treated Member Groups inconsistently. It was difficult to administer by Landcare Victoria and demanded a lot of information from our Member Groups at the time of renewal, delaying the provision of renewed insurance certificates to members. The 2022/23 fees will be based on a simple tier structure based on the expenditure figures you reported to us in the annual census. Fees and insurance costs will be levied on a sliding scale that reflects both the level of activity in Member Groups and their ability to pay.

Landcare Victoria 2022/23 Membership Fee Schedule Tier

  • Annual Member Group Expenditure ($)
  • Insurance fee (GST Inc.)
  • Membership Fee (GST Inc.)
  • Invoice total (GST Inc.)

1 – 0-999 $170 $200 $370
2 – 1000-9999 $190 $370 $560
3 – 10,000-99,999 $220 $495 $715
4 – 100,000-999,999 $460 $570 $1,030
5 – >1,000,000 $500 $700 $1,200

Your census data gives us the information we need to generate your membership fees. No longer will there be an exchange of emails about membership numbers and frequent small adjustments to your membership fees as your member numbers rise and fall.

Fees Increase in 2022
As well as simplifying the fee structure, the Landcare Victoria Board has made the difficult decision to increase membership fees. Landcare Victoria has been operating at a loss for some years and the Board believes it must take the responsible decision to ensure the financial viability of the organization. The Board continues to pursue other funding sources that can subsidize member services and reduce the call on membership fees. The Board has structured the increase to avoid imposing fee increases on the smallest Tier 1 groups. Indeed, about a quarter of these groups will benefit from a small fee reduction. Larger groups will carry a larger burden of the fee increase, reflecting both greater levels of activity and greater capacity to pay.


Questions and Comments
If you have any questions or comments about Landcare Victoria’s member services, please call Landcare Victoria on 03 9034 1940.

Landcare Victoria Inc.
ABN 69 561 995 226 | INC A0011936S
(03) 9034 1940 | info@landcarevictoria.org.au
PO Box 509, FLINDERS LANE VIC 8009