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Queenscliffe Herald Article - April 2005

Swan Bay Knowledge

A wealth of information about Swan Bay is available locally in a collection held at the Library of PIRVic.

For some years the Swan Bay Environment Association has been collecting all the information it can locate about Swan Bay and its environs. Items of history, geography, natural history, geology, zoology, etc. have been purchased, photocopied, donated or written for the collection, making it a useful source of information for anyone interested in or studying the area.

An extremely valuable resource book is the Swan Bay Marine and Wildlife Reserves Proposed Management Plan which is the 1991 report of research done by the then Department of Conservation and Environment. Although some of its recommendations have not been acted on, it provides an overview of all the issues involved in managing such an important area.

This Management Plan also includes an article on the history of the military use of Swan Island.

For inclusion in the Management Plan Lee Walker carried out an extensive survey of the vegetation of the Swan Bay area. This list has provided a valuable resource for re-vegetation projects and is also used as a guide for identifying weeds in the area.

Swan Bay was originally included in the Harold Holt and Port Phillip Heads Marine Park and many of the items provide a background to its inclusion in the present Marine Park system.

Birds, of course, are of major importance in Swan Bay, in particular the endangered orange-bellied parrot. It has been extensively studied and many of these studies are in the Library. Other bird surveys, bird counts and individual studies, e.g. of Latham’s snipe, are also included.

Examples of other items are studies of seagrass, aquaculture, fish, Edwards Point and the Bay’s hydrology.

Where necessary pages or sections of books have been photocopied when only a few pages are relevant to the Collection. Pages 211-220 of Matthew Flinders A Voyage to Terra Australis have been copied as they are relevant to Swan Bay . A copy of a short article on the formation of the Queenscliffe Cruising Yacht Club written in 1992 by Ross Farrow is included as part of the history of Swan Bay.

Anyone is very welcome to read or use any of the Swan Bay items. Contact the Librarian at PIRVic (5258 0111) for access.

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