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Environment

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Vegetation

The plant communities in the park are remnants of the original vegetation that has receded over the last 150 years with the rapid growth of Melbourne's suburbs.

There are six major vegetation communities in which about 400 indigenous plant species occur.

The park is particularly well known for its spectacular Mountain Ash forests and fern gullies.

Other vegetation communities are:

  • Cool temperate rainforest
  • Box Stringybark woodland
  • Riparian forest
  • Mountain Grey Gum -Messmate forest
  • Sclerophyll woodland.

The park supports significant plants such as the Slender Tree-fern and Summer Spider Orchid. Fire plays an important role in the ecology of the vegetation and is an on-going issue for residents of the Ranges.

Animals

The park is rich in wildlife with 130 native bird species, 31 native mammals, 21 reptiles and nine amphibian species recorded.

The Superb Lyrebird is its most famous inhabitant. People all over the world are fascinated by the ability of this bird to mimic the calls of other bird species, and by the dancing display and beautiful tail of the male.

Other native birds most frequently seen in the park include:

  • Sulphur-crested Cockatoos
  • Crimson Rosellas
  • Laughing Kookaburras
  • Eastern Yellow Robins
  • Yellow-faced Honeyeaters
  • Pied Currawongs.

Heavily-scarred eucalypt trees are evidence of the night-time feeding of Yellow-bellied Gliders, and tiny Feather-tail Gliders make their homes in the hollows of mature trees. Tree Goannas can also be found in the park.

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