You are here

Home > Learn > Info for students > Ecosystems > Inland waters and wetlands

Inland waters and wetlands

What are inland waters and wetland ecosystems?

Victoria has a rich variety of inland and estuarine aquatic environments, including flowing waters such as creeks, streams and rivers; and standing waters such as lakes and wetlands. These waters can be permanent or ephemeral, such as intermittently flooded wetlands and red gum floodplains.

Inland waters and wetlands provide habitat for a variety of animals. Some species such as fish and frogs require water throughout their life cycle, some may use aquatic areas for a specific stage of their life cycle (e.g. birds and amphibians), while others may require aquatic environments for resources such as food or as a corridor for movement. The right conditions can result in large and spectacular breeding colonies.

The forest canopy of tall eucalypts, large wattles and broad-leafed shrubs supports 80 per cent of Victoria's possums, gliders and bats and most of the common forest birds and arboreal skinks. The river banks and the rivers themselves support a vast range of invertebrates providing a food source for many native species, including platypus and water rats, kingfishers and swallows, frogs, fish, water skinks and snakes.

Inland waters and wetlands facts

  • There are over 17,000 wetlands larger than 1ha in Victoria
  • Inland waters and wetlands, coupled with the surrounding land, support natural processes that purify water while cycling nutrients and sediments
  • They provide important focal points for recreation, tourism and cultural enrichment.


  • Changes to flow regimes
  • Frequency and intensity of flooding – flooding is necessary to provide moisture for the germination and survival of red gum seeds
  • Particularly prone to weed invasion.

Where do I find inland waters and wetlands?

Find out more

Enviro Activ Wetlands  – Videos, photos and information about Victoria’s wetlands.

Deptartment of Environment and Primary Industries – Comprehensive information about Victoria’s wetland ecosystems including our internationally significant Ramsar wetlands.

Melbourne Museum – Coastal wetlands in Victoria – Information about Victoria’s coastal wetlands and a video about wetland birds.

Make a movie about wetlands

Parks Victoria’s Enviro Activ website has over 70 videos and 250 photos of wetlands around Victoria. You can use these for any educational purpose. The website has comprehensive information about wetlands as well as information about how you can make your own wildlife video. For teachers, there is also resources for you to use with your students.

Click to view the news RSS feed.

Head start on planned burning ahead of summer

29 Aug 2014

Early spring conditions in the west of the state have allowed Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) and Parks Victoria crews to get a head start on fuel reduction works ahead of summer. DEPI Chief Fire Officer Alan Goodwin said even though Spring is just around the corner, crews…

View all latest news

What's on

Click to view RSS Feed

Heart Foundation Walking - Park Walk

18 Sep 2014 10:00am-11:00am

Enjoy the great natural beauty of the Billy’s Creek area and learn some local history while enjoying a free guided walk run by Friends of Morwell National Park. The park is home to many species of native orchids, marsupials and birds, as well as relics of past land usage. Billy’s…

Click to view RSS Feed

Heart Foundation Walking - Park Walk

19 Sep 2014 10:00am-11:00am

Combining rare coastal woodlands and a beautiful coastline, this loop walk immerses the walker in natural beauty and a real sense of remoteness. Come along and enjoy this free guided walk by the Friends of Edwards Point Coastal Park.

Click to view RSS Feed

Kooyoora Wildflower Show

20 Sep 2014 12:00am - 21 Sep 2014 12:00am

Local wildflower display, bus tours, presentations, photographic competition, plant and local products sales, activities and more. Lunch, morning and afternoon tea will be available. Location: Inglewood Eucy Museum 20 Grant Street North, Inglewood

Click to view RSS Feed

Please note there is no Hanami Day event this year

20 Sep 2014 12:00am - 21 Sep 2014 12:00am

There will be no Hanami Day event this year, but visitors are encouraged to enjoy the gardens anytime during the cherry blossom flowering season that usually occurs across 2-3 weeks in September. Good places to enjoy the flowers include: George Tindale Memorial Gardens, Alfred Nicholas Memorial Gardens and the National…