Seen this cheery face around town? We've been rolling out new signs to highlight native vegetation on our roadsides, and protect them for being accidentally cleared or disturbed.
The signs feature a Tawny Frogmouth - one of many kinds of native fauna that rely on native vegetation for habitat.
Only about 5% of the original extent of native vegetation in the Greater Geelong region remains today, and much of this is on rural roadsides.
Roadside vegetation provides pockets of habitat for our native fauna. It also connects patches of habitat for them to move across landscapes in areas largely cleared for agriculture and development.
To help protect these precious habitat refuges from being accidentally cleared or disturbed, 20 years ago we began installing signs on roadsides to highlight where native vegetation is present.
We are now in the process of replacing the signs currently installed with the new, more distinctive design. The new signs feature an enigmatic image of a Tawny Frogmouth, along with information about the importance of protecting our native vegetation.
To celebrate the new design, we're running a competition to name our new roadside wildlife mascot. What name would you give Tawny?
To submit your entry, head to our Facebook page. The winning entry will be selected by the Geelong Youth Council, and will win a Field Naturalist Kit including a set of Olympus binoculars - perfect for budding wildlife watchers!
The judges will be looking for the most Clever and Creative suggestion.
Good luck! And don't forgot to look out for the new signs when passing through our rural areas.