The Summerland Peninsula, located at the western end of Phillip Island, is a site of high conservation value. The peninsula supports the last remaining little penguin colony on Phillip Island - one of the largest little penguin colonies in the world.
A large parcel of land in the centre of the peninsula was subdivided in 1927 into 776 residential lots. Over the following decades, 190 homes were constructed on the ‘Summerland Estate’. In order to protect the penguin colony, the Victorian Government commenced a program in 1985 to purchase privately held property within the estate. All properties were purchased by June 2010 and a subsequent three year $3.4 million habitat restoration program was funded by the state government.
Phillip Island Nature Parks is working towards the restoration of critical penguin habitat by undertaking work on the Summerland restoration project, including:
- undergrounding power
- demolition and removal of the last remaining houses and redundant infrastructure
- installation of artificial nests
- pest control
The completion of the Summerland buy-back was also the catalyst for the development of the Summerland Peninsula Master Plan. The Master Plan seeks to address the role of tourism and recreation within this highly sensitive conservation area.