Managing our natural resources

The management of our Natural Resource Areas (NRAs) is an ongoing job.

Each NRA is divided into Vegetation Management Zones, all with a five-year plan with targets for weed cover, native vegetation cover and revegetation.  

Annual programs ensure these targets are met. 

Resource management objectives

  • Protect, maintain and restore eco-friendly procedures, indigenous flora and fauna, habitats and gene pools
  • Support the community’s involvement in managing our NRAs  
  • Promote community understanding of our NRAs values, biodiversity and eco-friendly processes.

Management areas

Fire management

Fire is used as an important vegetation management tool within our NRAs in two ways:

  1. Authorised fires to stimulate the regrowth of indigenous plants. These carefully planned fires increase biodiversity and reduce weeds.
  2. Seed head/seedling burning. This technique reduces the build-up of weed species by destroying it before growing.  

For more information on preventing fire or burning off on private land visit Burning Off Permits.

Biodiversity

The City of Kingston includes a large part of Melbourne’s ‘Sandbelt’ - lying to the west of the Gippsland Plain bioregion.

There are several soil types, mostly sandy soil and habitats, which range from inland sand dunes, creeks, wetlands, coastal buffs and dunes.

Number of Ecological Vegetation Classes (EVC):

  • 72 in the Gippsland Plain bioregion 
  • 33 in Kingston before European settlement, with many lost or changed 
  • 30 currently in Kingston  
  • 16 in our Natural Resource Areas (NRAs)  

These include remnant vegetation areas crucial for supporting a range of indigenous native flora and fauna.

Kingston’s native flora has approximately 470 species of ferns and flowering plants and around 274 species of vertebrates. 

Specialist management is required for the following habitats identified within our NRAs:

  • Sand Heathland - endangered 
  • Coastal Banksia Woodland - endangered
  • Coastal Heathland Scrub - vulnerable 
  • Estuarine Reedbeds - vulnerable.   

Weeds

Weeds threaten the survival of our local native flora and fauna, overtaking indigenous plants for light, nutrients and water. They can significantly disrupt native wildlife habitats and ecosystems, which can leave species without food and shelter.

Machinery, birds, animals, wind or dumped garden cuttings can contribute to spreading weeds.  

Weeds are: 

  • Accidentally or intentionally introduced foreign plants 
  • Native plants that became weeds from poor management or outside their natural area   

The environmental, economic and social impacts of weeds: 

  • Smothers and prevents regrowth of native plants 
  • Reduces biodiversity
  • Control costs
  • Loss of open spaces 
  • Increased fire risk 
  • Decline to landscape and water quality
  • Harbour pests 
  • Choke waterways, increase flooding 
  • Alters hydrological and nutrient cycles 

Our list of environmental weed species(PDF, 195KB) shows invasive species that you should avoid planting, and trying to remove if found.

Some weed species may be referred to as a ‘Noxious Weed’ under the Catchment & Land Protection Act 1994. They must be removed and prevented from spreading.  

Visit the Agriculture Victoria website or contact on 136 186 for more information.  

Weed management

City of Kingston takes an integrated approach to weed management, using a range of control techniques including hand weeding, steaming, controlled burning and herbicides.

In high-traffic areas such as playgrounds and childcare centres, only manual weeding and steaming are used. 

Melbourne Water use an integrated weed management approach at the Quiet Lakes and Tidal Waterways. This approach consists of mechanical raking and herbicide treatment

Our use of herbicides is guided by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) and WorkSafe.

Glyphosate

The APVMA and WorkSafe guidelines state that products containing glyphosate can be used safety if directions are followed on the Safety Data Sheet and labels.

Patterson Lakes Waterways

Patterson Lakes Waterways is the collective name for a series of water bodies called the Tidal Waterways and the Quiet Lakes. They provide an important part in the regional drainage system and in flood protection.

The Tidal Waterways is a chain of canals and harbours connected to Patterson River and Port Phillip Bay.

The Quiet Lakes consists of three landlocked lakes – Legana, Illawong and Carramar. Together they are all connected to Patterson Lakes River and Kananook Creek via pumps and drains.

The highly valued waterways provide 23 kms of shoreline water to more than 1,200 homes. 

Council and Melbourne Water have re-entered a 5 year management plan(PDF, 2MB) which outlines responsibilities. Beach maintenance works are done by Melbourne Water through Council funding.

For scheduled dates and service details please see our Annual Beach Maintenance Program(PDF, 76KB). Please note: this program is subject to change and updated on the website. 

Could residents please ensure all personal equipment, like outdoor furniture or boats, are removed from the beach areas so the contractor can perform the maintenance service. Contractors are not required to move any equipment which will cause areas to be missed. We appreciate your cooperation.  

Subscribe for updates on Patterson Lakes Tidal Waterways.

Beach Maintenance Update

Tidal Waterways: Melbourne Water is working with the contractor to finish the remaining beach maintenance services to areas scheduled in July, to begin on Friday 26 August 2022, pending suitable weather conditions.

Quiet Lakes: The scheduled sand retrieval service for August has been rescheduled for late September/early October due to booking delays with the contractor. All other services scheduled in September will still be provided in accordance with the program with sand retrieval to commence straight after.

Melbourne Water has advised that the lighting bollards in the middle of Lake Legana are not operational. Council is working with Melbourne Water to investigate the cause and undertake necessary repairs.

Water quality

In warmer weather, usually between October to January, aquatic growth can be seen in the waterways. These plants provide environmental benefits and improve the water quality. They pose no risk to humans, animals or environmental health.