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Anglesea, Aireys Inlet Society for the Protection of Flora and Fauna (Angair Inc)

While visiting Anglesea in spring of 1968, Edith Lawn innocently picked spider orchids for her art class to draw and learnt not only how much the locals prized the district’s flora, but also that she had broken the law.

Edith was horrified by her actions and wondered if other visitors were unaware of the laws protecting the indigenous fauna and flora. To make amends, she initiated a public meeting in Anglesea on 27 April 1969, to establish a society to protect the local flora and fauna. And so, Angair was born.

Could Edith have possibly imagined that such a successful conservation organisation would flourish, and five decades later, we would be celebrating 50 years of caring for the environment?

Not only has Angair grown to a membership of over 600, it has also notched up a long and remarkable list of initiatives and achievements.

As you enjoy our special local natural environment, pause to reflect that the beauty of this relatively unspoilt stretch of the Surf Coast is due in large part to the foresight of Angair’s founders and the determination and hard work of several particularly dedicated individuals and the many members who’ve followed since 1969.

You can read more details about Angair’s achievements and milestones in Angair: the first 50 years.

Angair’s initiatives and achievements


  • What’s that? on the rocky reefs brochure published
  • The first video recording of an Angair Talk is uploaded to the Angair Nature Show


  • The Angair website is refreshed with a redesign


  • A four-part video series, Orchid Journey, is launched on the Angair Nature Show site
  • The launch of specially designed Family Walks to encourage parents and young children to learn together through looking
  • The revised 4 th edition of Orchids of the Anglesea District is published


  • The Angair Newsletter is replaced by a monthly Angair News and a seasonal Angair Quarterly


  • The online Angair Nature Show is launched as the COVID 19 epidemic forces cancellation of the annual Wildflower Show


  • Celebration of Angair’s 50th anniversary on April 27


  • Ceremony to celebrate incorporation of the Anglesea Heath into the Great Otway National Park
  • Angair hosted Australian Naturalists Network’s tenth biennial gathering at Anglesea


  • Angair Indigenous Plant Centre formally opened by Mayor Brian McKiterick
  • Painkalac Reservoir officially opened to the public for walking, birdwatching and recreational fishing. Angair had lobbied for limited passive recreational activities
  • Legislation to incorporate 6510ha of the Anglesea Heath into the Great Otway National Park passed by both houses of the Victorian parliament. Angair had campaigned for this


  • Angair Wildflower and Art Weekend 2015 received The 2016 Surf Coast Shire Event of the Year Award
  • Permit granted for relocation of Propagation Group in the Community Precinct
  • Brochure Flowers of Anglesea and Aireys Inlet published
  • Brochure Discovering the Aireys Inlet Cliff Walk published
  • Digital Asset Management project to consolidate Angair’s extensive collection of flora and fauna knowledge commenced with funding from the Helen Macpherson Smith Trust


  • Peter Godfrey bequest directed to Aireys Inlet cliff top project and cliff walk brochure
  • New series of fauna cards by Kaye Traynor launched at annual dinner
  • Kangaroo Advisory Group came under Angair’s auspices
  • Members invited to contribute to Angair’s Facebook Page


  • Library catalogue online
  • Brochure Fungi of the Surf Coast Shire published


  • Plant study group established
  • Anglesea endemic Angahook Caladenia, Caladenia maritima, listed under FFG Act


  • Angair’s Facebook Page opened
  • Anglesea Coast Action became the Angair special interest group Friends of the Anglesea Coast
  • Weed Herbarium completed
  • Fungi herbarium commenced


  • Newsletter became available by email
  • Angair hosted South East Australia Naturalists Association’s autumn campout at Anglesea
  • Garden at new Anglesea Primary School campus established
  • Angair opposed expansion of Alcoa’s mining area in the Anglesea Heath
  • Angair named as Finalist in Tidy Towns and Keep Australia Beautiful programs


  • Angair Mosaic created as part of Anglesea Art Walk
  • Angair’s new website went on-line at
  • Anglesea Perimeter Walk incorporating Don’s Track established
  • Discovery of White Fingers, Caladenia aff. catenata, a new record for the district
  • Brochure Indigenous Wildlife of Anglesea and Aireys Inlet published
  • New special interest group Friends of Allen Noble Sanctuary established


  • Flowers of Anglesea and Aireys Inlet (ed Margaret MacDonald) launched at the Senior Citizens Club rooms Anglesea
  • Orchids of Anglesea District 3rd ed. Everett Foster & Margaret MacDonald published with sponsorship from Angair
  • Celebration of Angair’s 40th anniversary


  • Worked with Barwon Water and Ecology Australia re the location of infrastructure for the Anglesea Borefield Project
  • Discovery of Green-striped Greenhood, Pterostylis chlorogramma, a new record for the district


  • Brochure Plants Suitable for Growing in the Surf Coast Shire published
  • Lease signed for Angair Natural History Centre


  • Manuka removed from Elizabeth Street Reserve (now Anglesea Bushland Reserve) with ecological burn carried out on Angair’s recommendation
  • Angair Weed Exchange Program initiated


  • Great Otway National Park proclaimed
  • Worked with Barwon Water on route for the Aireys Inlet sewage pipeline to the Anglesea treatment plant


  • Commenced preparation of Flowers of Anglesea & Aireys Inlet
  • Plant Propagation Group established
  • Envirofund grants ($23,000 and $71,000) with Alcoa and Parks Victoria to protect and rehabilitate nationally significant heathland in the Anglesea Heath
  • Thelymitra hiemalis, the Winter Sun Orchid was first officially recorded in Anglesea


  • Angair assisted with establishment of Anglesea Kangaroo Advisory Group
  • Lobbied State Government to purchase more Schutz land
  • Anglesea Community Indigenous Garden established


  • Angahook–Lorne (Later Angahook–Otway) investigation by Victorian Environmental Assessment Council (VEAC) with Margaret MacDonald as Angair’s representative
  • The Angair Fund was established
  • Angair involved with launch of Anglesea Heath Management Plan
  • Marine National Parks and Sanctuaries proclaimed
  • Cynthia Paltridge bequest received (Future publications fund)
  • New series of flora cards by Ruth Hurst launched at annual dinner
  • Snow Gum Nature Reserve created


  • Angair Vegetation Regeneration Project final publication
  • Newly appointed Governor of Victoria, John Landy, visited Angair


  • Inaugural Victorian Coastal Award for Excellence
  • Angair heavily involved in Anglesea Heath Partnership Agreement between DNRE and Alcoa of Australia
  • Angair’s first webpage went online
  • Borrowing from the Angair library began with regular access hours


  • Celebration of Angair’s 30th anniversary


  • Publication of Environmental Weeds: Invaders of our Surf Coast
  • Official opening of Mary D White Resource Centre
  • Discovery of Angahook Caladenia, Caladenia maritima, a new species, endemic to Anglesea
  • Commenced regular monthly bird observation walks and regular monthly social evenings with guest speakers


  • New edition Anglesea: A Natural History Study
  • Greenhood Nature Reserve created
  • Ceremony for handover of O’Donohue, Mansfield and Schutz land to Marie Tehan, Minister for Conservation and Land Management
  • Wurmbea latifolia subsp. vanessae first reported in the Anglesea District


  • Celebration of Mary White’s life
  • Mount Ingoldsby added to National Estate Listing
  • Former Water Board Building became the venue for Angair meetings
  • Formally opposed land subdivision of Merran’s Sun Orchid habitat at Fairhaven leading to creation of Merrans Reserve
  • Get to Know our Tracks walks introduced
  • Regular Monday morning working bees held
  • Project to seal the Ironbark Basin Dam commenced


  • Membership badge produced
  • Angair instrumental in having Conservation Covenants placed on Ironbark Basin, Mellors Swamp and Painkalac Valley
  • Birds from Anglesea to Eastern View (P Reilly) published—proceeds to land protection
  • Wind on the Heath film and video cassette produced


  • 215.8ha of O’Donohue land purchased by Federal and State Governments and added to the Angahook–Lorne State Park
  • 69.43ha of Mansfield land purchased at public auction for $380,000 with public appeal funds, added to the Angahook–Lorne State Park and later officially named the Mary D White Reserve
  • Angair logo redesigned


  • Prepared submissions for presentation at Panel Hearings for O’Donohue land and Mansfield land


  • Elizabeth Street land reserved as public land (later known as Anglesea Bushland Reserve)
  • 7,200ha of Alcoa Lease listed on the Register of the National Estate
  • Merran’s Sun Orchid, Thelymitra x merraniae rediscovered at Moggs Creek after 63 years
  • 17.69ha Mansfield land purchased with public appeal funds


  • Official launch of Great Ocean Road Appeal for purchase of O’Donohue land


  • Coastal Vegetation of Anglesea–Airey’s Inlet Region (Mary D White) published
  • Angair instrumental in formation of Great Ocean Road Committee
  • New bird hide built at Distillery Creek
  • Celebration of Angair’s 21st anniversary at Rose Garden Restaurant
  • First report of White Hyacinth Orchid, Dipodium pardalinum, in Anglesea District


  • The Flowers of Anglesea River Valley (Mary D White) published


  • First Angair Weed Week


  • Angahook State Park declared


  • Dickinson Land purchased by the State Government
  • Brochure Small Beautiful Useful (Mary D White) published
  • The endemic Anglesea Grevillea, Grevillea infecunda, given species status


  • Shire of Barrabool Council asked Angair to plant indigenous species in the newly developed Coogoorah Park


  • Angair contributed to land purchase at Point Addis for addition to Ironbark Basin
  • Angair became incorporated
  • Wrinkled Buttons, Leptorhynchos gatesii (now Leiocarpa gatesii), rediscovered behind Eastern View


  • Vegetation Regeneration Study (10 year study) began after the devastating February bushfire with Margaret Wark as project leader. A total of 150 volunteers, with work supported by several grants, resulted in five scientific publications and greatly increased knowledge of the Anglesea vegetation


  • Angair successfully opposed the use of the Dickinson land at Urquhart Bluff as farmland
  • First bird hide at Angahook–Lorne State Park built (lost in Ash Wednesday bushfires, 1983)


  • Angair awarded Premier’s Conservation Prize—Oil painting by Neil Douglas


  • Wildflower cards illustrated by Mary White produced


  • Celebration of Angair’s 10th anniversary


  • Fairyland Reserve under Angair’s care


  • Monthly Newsletter produced
  • Junior Angair established


  • First Edition of Anglesea: A Natural History Study published


  • Celebration of Angair’s 50th anniversary on April 27


  • Weir built at Anglesea River mouth, despite Angair’s opposition


  • Purnell Street Reserve renamed Edna Bowman Reserve
  • Angair successfully opposed plan to route sewage pipeline along beach


  • Shire acquired title to the Ironbark Basin Reserve and requested a meeting with Angair regarding its future management


  • Shire of Barrabool asked Angair to care for Purnell Street Reserve


  • Angair Newsletter News and Views produced
  • A Protected Wildflower Area signs installed at Anglesea and Aireys Inlet


  • First Angair Nature Show


  • Angair established First Constitution
  • Original logo designed
  • Angair members appointed as Honorary Rangers
  • First report of Hoary Sun Orchid, Thelymitra mucida, in Anglesea District