Skip to main content

Discover the magic of the forest with the Gunbower Bioblitz

4 owls sitting in a gum tree looking directly at the camera.
13 Nov 2023

Discover the amazing animals of Gunbower Island on the last weekend in November and join experts to experience the magic of the floodplain.

The Gunbower Bioblitz on November 25 and 26 will feature five events showcasing five different types of animals that rely on the health of the Gunbower Forest floodplain to survive and thrive.

The events include:
Saturday 25 November

  • Woodland Birds of Gunbower Forest 8am to 10am
  • Bats of Gunbower Forest 7pm

Sunday 26 November

  • Fish of Gunbower Creek 8am
  • Ramsar Reptiles 2pm
  • Frogs of the Ramsar Wetlands 5pm

North Central Catchment Management Authority (CMA) Ramsar Wetlands Project Manager Amy Russell said the Bioblitz was a great way for people of all ages to discover the array of animals that call the forest and Gunbower Creek home.

“The woodlands bird event will take people on a guided tour of Reedy Lagoon, showcasing the birds living among the iconic river red gums that surround it,” she said.

“If you’re up early on Sunday morning you can help SEA LIFE Melbourne Aquarium staff release once-locally-extinct southern purple-spotted gudgeon, also known as the zombie fish, into Cameron’s Creek, and have a light breakfast on us.

“Later that day you can take a guided tour of the forest floor to look for friendly reptiles, or enjoy frog spotting at one of the floodplain’s wetlands.”

North Central CMA Citizen Science Co-ordinator Tania MacLeod said the Bats of Gunbower Forest event will also be popular.

“A team of young people has been interning with us under a program delivered by the Campaspe Cohuna Local Learning and Employment Network, and the bat showcase is part of their Youth Take Over,” she said.

“They’ll be joining experienced ecologists from the Arthur Rylah Institute, and anyone else who wants to come, to locate bats with handheld detectors, record bat calls, and check traps.”

The Gunbower Bioblitz will be held at the same time as the Great Southern Bioblitz across the Southern Hemisphere.

“We’re encouraging those attending to download the iNaturalist App and record what they see over the weekend,” Ms Russell said.

“We work with local communities, other government agencies, and the Victorian and Australian governments to deliver water for the environment and protect the plants and animals of Gunbower Forest.

“The Gunbower Bioblitz is a great way to see that work, connect with communities across the globe, and highlight how magical Gunbower is.”

Bookings are essential. Book your spot and find out more about each event here.

The events are funded by the Victorian Government’s $248 million investment over four years (2020-2024) to improve catchment and waterway health across regional Victoria, and the Federal Government’s The Living Murray project.