Biodiversity is the variety of life forms that exists in an area: the different plants, animal and micro-organisms, the genes they contain and the ecosystems they form.
The Port Phillip & Western Port Region is one of the most biologically diverse regions in the state, with more than 1860 species of native flora and 600 species of native vertebrate fauna. Of these 358 flora and 179 fauna are listed as threatened (as at 2005).
There is much pressure placed on the conservation of biodiversity within this region, especially given the expanding population of Melbourne. The greatest threats include vegetation clearing (leading to the loss of habitat), competition with pest plants and animals, salinity and inappropriate land and waterway management.
The Port Phillip and Westernport CMA is working with Federal, State and Local government, key agencies and community groups to ensure the conservation of our natural biodiversity. This will be achieved by increasing the coverage and health of the regions native vegetation, controlling marine pests, developing and implementing recovery plans for threatened species and educating the community on the value of biodiversity.