Location: Lara, Melways Page 11, Grids C11 & C12
Access: Branch Road (Page 11 Grid C12)
Facilities: Parking, toilets, BBQ’s, Visitor Centre
Habitat: The granite peaks of the You Yangs rise dramatically in the Werribee lava plains. Although only 352 m in height, they dominate the landscape and are clearly identifiable from Melbourne and beyond.
A variety of plant species can be found. Tall eucalypts such as Manna Gums, Yellow Gums and River Red Gums give way to sparse undergrowth of native shrubs and ground covers. Patches of wattles and Drooping She-oaks can also be seen.
The vegetation of the You Yangs has seen considerable change since the arrival of Europeans. As the native vegetation was cleared for farming and timber, plantations of Sugar Gum and Brown Mallet were established to supply local communities with firewood, posts and poles.
In January 1985, a wildfire burnt more than 80% of the park. The vegetation is now slowly recovering, although its composition is changing. Unfortunately Boneseed, a noxious weed, is thriving since the fire and is choking out large areas of native vegetation.
Park Notes & Map: Click here
The name 'You Yang' comes from the Aboriginal words 'Wurdi Youang' or 'Ude Youang' meaning 'big mountain in the middle of a plain'. Explorer Matthew Flinders was the first European to visit the You Yangs. On 1 May 1802, he and three of his men climbed to the highest point. He named it 'Station Peak' but this was later changed to ‘Flinders Peak’ in his honour.
Typical Common Birds include:
Common Bronzewing; Whistling Kite; Galah; Sulphur-crested Cockatoo; Purple-crowned Lorikeet; Eastern Rosella; Red-rumped Parrot; Laughing Kookaburra; Superb Fairy-wren; Yellow-rumped Thornbill; Brown Thornbill; Spotted Pardalote; White-plumed Honeyeater; Red Wattlebird; New Holland Honeyeater; Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike; Rufous Whistler; Grey Shrike-thrush; Australian Magpie; Grey Fantail; Willie Wagtail; Little Raven; Magpie-lark; White-winged Chough; Eastern Yellow Robin; Welcome Swallow.
Other Possible Birds include:
Australian Wood Duck; Straw-necked Ibis; Brown Goshawk; Wedge-tailed Eagle; Brown Falcon; Long-billed Corella; Fan-tailed Cuckoo; White-throated Treecreeper; Weebill; Striated Thornbill; Yellow Thornbill; Striated Pardalote; Yellow-faced Honeyeater; Black-chinned Honeyeater; Brown-headed Honeyeater; Crested Shrike-tit; Golden Whistler; Olive-backed Oriole; Dusky Woodswallow; Restless Flycatcher; Jacky Winter; Scarlet Robin; Silvereye; Tree Martin; Common Blackbird; Mistletoebird; Red-browed Finch; Diamond Firetail; European Goldfinch.
Outings Bird Lists: For a Bird List of all recent BirdLife Melbourne Outings to this site, click here
Photographs by Sonja Ross