Safe Haven Project

Building one of Australia’s largest wildlife reserves

Some of Victoria’s most threatened animals will be given a safe place to live thanks to a new
sanctuary in the north west of the state.

The First People of the Millewa Mallee Aboriginal Corporation and Trust for Nature are working
together to plan and build a 14,500 ha fenced reserve on Neds Corner Station, on Ngintait Country
west of Mildura.

The reserve will be one of the largest of its kind in Australia, and is part of the Victorian
Government’s Safe Havens project which is supporting a number of other reserve fencing projects,
such as one on Wilson’ Promotory.

Once completed, the reserve will keep out feral predators and herbivores and provide protection
over almost half of the 30,000 ha property, allowing the restoration of woodlands, recovery of
threatened species’ populations and the potential, future reintroduction of wildlife that has become
extinct in the area.

The fence will also protect cultural heritage sites which are at risk of damage from pests which
disturb the soil and eat the native plants that hold the soil in place.

First People of the Millewa Mallee Aboriginal Corporation CEO Norman Wilson said the project will
help to restore spirit on Country, returning cultural practice and decision-making to Country for
Traditional Owners and the Aboriginal community.

Fifteen species of animals may be suitable for reintroduction to Neds Corner—including Yellow-
footed Antechinus, Mitchell’s Hopping Mouse, Brush-tailed Bettong, Greater Stick-nest Rat, Greater
Bilby, Bush Stone-curlew and Spotted Bowerbird.

Trust for Nature CEO Victoria Marles said this reserve will build on two decades of conservation work
on the property.

She said, “Neds Corner has recovered dramatically since it was acquired by Trust for Nature. What
was once badly impacted by cropping and grazing is now recovering with native vegetation like
saltbush and blue bush and pine woodlands.”

“Fencing half of the property will enhance it further and give us a real chance of reintroducing
animals that no longer live in the area due to predators and loss of habitat.”

Trust for Nature also recently announced plans to transfer the ownership of Neds Corner to
Traditional Owners by 2024.

The Safe Havens project on Neds Corner is supported by the Victorian Government as part of its
Biodiversity Bushfire Response and Recovery Program. The program focuses on maximising the long-term, state-wide resilience of species and their habitats across the landscape—especially those species most affected by the fires of 2019-20.