'Park Watch' the quarterly journal published by the Victorian National Parks Association (VNPA). This issue was dedicated to the memory of Jenny Barnett, who with her husband John Barnett, was killed in the Black Saturday bushfires, on their property in Steels Creek, 7th February 2009.

Jenny and John Barnett, both zoologists, were actively involved in environmental research and community campaigns. Jenny Barnett was employed at the Victorian National Parks Association (VNPA), and was deeply interested in ant ecology and protecting parks, landscapes, flora and fauna. John Barnett was an Associate Professor in the Melbourne School of Land & Environment at the University of Melbourne. He specialised in the welfare of domestic animals, especially poultry and pigs. Together they were actively involved in conservation research and campaigns with the VNPA.

The journal has a feature article: 'Jenny Barnett: lifelong conservationalist', which provides a biography of her work and achievements in conservation, including 25 years involvement with the VNPA as a volunteer and the longest serving staff member. She wrote an important guide to help protect local environments from new developments: 'Standing up for your local environment: an action guide' in 1987. Jenny was involved in a broad range of environmental campaigns including: fire ecology, alpine resort developments, alpine grazing, mining in Box Ironbark forests, logging and forestry issues, water conservation in the Wimmera, channel deepening, and the proposed Nowingi toxic waste dump. The journal includes a selection of tributes from friends and colleagues, and information about the Jenny Barnett Conservation Tribute Campaign, established by the VNPA, to raise funds for providing science-based input to the Victorian Bushfires Royal Commission, to respond to the backlash against national parks and conservation following Black Saturday, continue Jenny's work in research and protection of habitats, flora and fauna. Another article in the issue considers a range of questions raised by the 2009 bushfires: causes, climate change, fuel reduction burns and impact on the environment.

The cover and rear pages of the journal feature photographs of Jenny Barnett, and the plants and animals that inspired her life work.

Physical Description

A4 size journal, colour photographs, 35 pages.


This is a story of the tragic deaths of Jenny and John Barnett during the Black Saturday bushfires in 2009 in their bush weekender at Steels Creek. It is also a story about the value that they invested in native habitat and landscape, animal rights, fauna and flora; their years of dedicated research, community environmental activism and personal choice in living close to the environment that they loved. The response to their deaths has reaffirmed their life work and points to the issues that have emerged since the 2009 bushfires: the importance of science research to inform environmental management, habitat protection and fuel reduction burns.

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