Neville Walsh is Senior Conservation Botanist at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Melbourne. His work involves both plant identification and classification, and, conservation. Neville's roles include naming and describing new plant species and investigating how rare species can be conserved.
Well, the days of broad scale clearing for farming have largely gone. Clearing, ploughing and fertilising in the past is the main reason that grasslands are now rare. These days, the main threats are growing cities – mainly Melbourne, but also Geelong for example, weed invasion, and loss of species from grasslands through the closing up of those important gaps between the grass tussocks.