Ecological vegetation classes of Wombat Forest

By Murray Ralph

The types of native vegetation that occur across Victoria vary significantly. This variation reflects differences in geology, soil type, aspect, climate, altitude and position in the landscape. Depending on these environmental conditions, particular plant species and groups of plants will tend to grow together. The term used to describe these distinct native vegetation types or plant communities is Ecological Vegetation Class (EVC).

Within the Wombat Forest approximately 16 different EVC’s have been mapped (although more mapping is required). The most common EVC in the Wombat Forest is Shrubby Foothill Forest. It occurs on both sides of the Great Divide, but is particularly extensive on the southern side of the divide.

EVCs in the Wombat State Forest

EVCEVC numberBioregional Conservation Status% Wombat
Swampy Riparian WoodlandEVC 83Endangered0.17
Streambank ShrublandEVC 851Endangered0.00
Riparian ForestEVC 18Vulnerable0.92
Valley Grassy ForestEVC 47Vulnerable0.97
Creekline Herb-rich WoodlandEVC 164Vulnerable 
Sedgy Riparian WoodlandEVC 198Depleted2.41
Grassy ForestEVC 128Depleted0.02
Grassy WoodlandEVC 175Vulnerable0.01
Grassy Dry ForestEVC 22Depleted1.69
Shrubby Dry ForestEVC 21Least concern2.56
Midlands Heathy WoodlandEVC 48-13Depleted0.40
Heathy Dry ForestEVC 20Least concern8.79
Herb-rich Foothill ForestEVC 23Depleted13.73
Herb-rich Foothill Forest/ Shrubby Foothill Forest ComplexEVC 178Depleted6.84
Shrubby Foothill ForestEVC 45Least concern57.66
Damp ForestEVC 29Vulnerable1.47

EVC status and criteria

The status of an EVC is established by a number of criteria which include depletion (how much of the EVC remains since European settlement), degradation, current threats and rarity. The table below is a simplified version of this criteria.

EndangeredLess than 10% pre-European extent remains.
Vulnerable10 to 30% pre-European extent remains.
DepletedGreater than 30% and up to 50% pre-European extent remains.
RareRare EVC (as defined by geographic occurrence) but neither depleted, degraded nor currently threatened to an extent that would qualify as Endangered, Vulnerable or Depleted.
Least ConcernGreater than 50% pre-European extent remains and subject to little to no degradation over a majority of this area.