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River Red Gum

The River Red Gum (Eucalyptus camaldulensis) is an iconic tree seen in the wetlands beside both anabranches of the Yea River. The trees produce welcome shade and are important in stabilising the river banks. The association of the River Red Gum with water makes the tree a natural habitat choice for other species. During floods, fish use the roots and snags as a breeding habitat. These snags, formed when River Red Gums fall into rivers, are an important part of river ecosystems. Hollows, vital to many birds and mammals for nesting, form after 100 years and you will see many water birds using them as lookouts and resting spots, especially in the trees in Cummins Lagoon.
The Taungurung people used the dark red sap or ‘gum’ that oozes from the trunk as a medicine for burns. It is rich in tannin. Eucalyptus leaves were also used medicinally in steam baths.

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