Where is Sparrovale?
In June 2019, the two land parcels totalling 500 hectares were acquired by City of Greater Geelong to provide for stage and treatment of stormwater from the adjoining Armstrong Creek Urban Growth Area. The new reserve will protect nationally significant flora and fauna, and will also enhance habitat for internationally protected bird species visiting the Port Phillip (Western Shoreline) and Bellarine Peninsula Ramsar area.
Sparrovale is a 500 hectare agricultural property located only 8km from the centre of Geelong, off Barwon Heads Road. The site includes 4km of Barwon Heads River frontage along its eastern boundary and forms the buffer between the new Armstrong Creek residential area and Lake Connwarre State Game Reserve managed by Parks Victoria.
These wetlands border the northern boundary of the Harriott Armstrong Creek future community.
What's the plan?
The City of Greater Geelong is seeking to develop an integrated and resilient wetland and waterway parkland that:
• Protects and enhances the natural habitat and biodiversity values of the Barwon River and Lake Connewarre Ramsar area;
• Retain the capacity and natural connectivity of the Barwon River floodplain;
• Recognises and celebrates values and layering of indigenous and non-indigenous cultural heritage;
• Improves community access to the Barwon River and connection with the natural environment;
• Provides open space and recreational facilities in a natural setting for a diverse and growing community, and more.
To read more about what the City of Greater Geelong has planned, check out the 20-year vision document.
Natural environment and birdlife
Sparrovale provides habitat for species listed under international agreements including the Japan-Australia Migratory Bird Agreement (JAMBA), the China-Australia Migratory Bird Agreement (CAMBA), the Flora & Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 (FFG Act) and the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (the Bonn Convention). The site provides habitat for threatened species including Orange-Bellied Parrot, Brolga, Yarra Pygmy Perch, Australian Mudfish and Growling Grass Frog.