This Fact Sheet should be read in conjunction with the Introduction to the MVG Fact Sheets
A number of land cover types occur across Australia. These include natural areas such as bare ground, open water or human-influenced cover, such as urban areas, cropland and grazing country where the trees and shrub have been removed or thinned.
Stage 1 of the NVIS aimed to provide a comprehensive treatment of native vegetation. Custodians providing data to this version of NVIS focused on standardised descriptions and maps of vascular plant occurrence.
Other cover types were generally standardised within each jurisdiction, but there were inconsistencies and omissions when compiled nationally.
Some of these cover types (MVGs 24, 26, 27 and 29) could be broadly considered “natural” from a terrestrial viewpoint.
In summary, the data for other cover types is included here for contextual and cartographic purposes only and is not suitable for quantitative reporting at this stage.
MVG 24 - Inland aquatic: freshwater, salt lakes, lagoons
Fresh and/or brackish water features.
G enerally open water or other major hydrological feature devoid of vegetation for most of the year, such as a large salt lake.
Some datasets provided to NVIS have not distinguished between freshwater and seawater, so arbitrary spatial editing was performed to distinguish sea and estuaries (MVG 28).
Also, no attempt has been made to distinguish between natural or man-made water features in this classification.
Please note that vegetated wetlands are generally classified under the relevant major vegetation group, such as Other Grasslands, Herblands, Sedgelands and Rushlands (MVG 21) or Melaleuca Forests and Woodlands (MVG 9).
Salt lakes and coastal lowlands often have fringing areas of saltmarshes, which are assigned to Chenopod Shrublands, Samphire Shrublands and Forblands (MVG 22).
Also includes a wide range of grazing land where the native trees and shrubs have been removed or substantially modified.
Includes areas where the data supplier has described the understorey as dominated by introduced species.
Areas of weed infestation, where the weed is dominant in the landscape, would be classified under this group.
Whilst changed from their original structure and composition, these areas often contain significant biodiversity resources and the potential for restoration.
MVG 26 - Unclassified Native Vegetation
Areas designated as native vegetation by the data supplier, but with insufficient details available to assign it to another major vegetation group.
MVG 27 - Naturally bare: sand, rock, claypan, mudflat
Includes natural environments that are naturally devoid of vascular plants.
Extensive areas devoid of vegetation can be found as bare ground, either sand dune, claypan or salt lakes in the harsh environments of the arid interior.
Coastal sand masses can often contain extensive areas of bare sands, mostly as active dunes.
Includes bare or lichen-encrusted rock in coastal, alpine, arid and other environments, such as Uluru and monadnocks in Western Australia. A very small number of these areas have NVIS descriptions of the non-vascular plants present.
These areas have been nominated by the data supplier as containing regenerating native species following disturbance.
Alterations to the structure and/or composition of the vegetation of these areas is such that they cannot be easily classified into one of the “native” MVGs (1-23).
MVG 30 – Unclassified forest
Vegetation currently attributed to this MVG consists of dense forest found in tropical Australia (NT, QLD).
Represents a low form of MVG 4 Tropical Eucalypt Open forests and MVG 12 Tropical Eucalypt Woodlands/Grasslands and may be attributable to these groups.
Indicative canopy flora includes Eucalyptus tetrodonta, Eucalyptus miniata, Eucalyptus tectifica, Eucalyptus terminalis, Terminaliaspecies and Corymbia species (NVIS 4.1).
The understorey may be shrubby or grassy with species such as Carissa lanceolata, Hakea arborescens, Terminalia canescens Erythrophleum chlorostachys, Livistona humilis and Gardenia megasperma, and groundlayer species of the genera Triodia, Eriachne and Sorghum.
MVG 99 - Unknown/no data
No details are available.
Ad hoc comparison with adjacent areas and independent (non-vegetation) datasets can reveal areas that could be reassigned to hydrological features (MVG 24) or cleared/modified land (MVG 25). However, there are no details to do systematic reinterpretation with any certainty, nor to distinguish the relevant MVGs from the input datasets, where several cover types may be confounded.
Such systematic reinterpretation is thus beyond the scope of NVIS Stage 1.