What bird is that?

Are you ready for the Aussie Backyard Bird Count in mid-October?

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Can you tell your currawongs from your curlews? Or do you just want to spend a pleasant morning by the creek?

The next SCLG event is a wander beside the King Parrot Creek this Saturday morning (October 1), between 9:30 & 11:30. The venue is Coonans Reserve, Upper King Parrot Creek Road, Flowerdale.

Meet at the entrance track for coffee before we start. See you there.

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Kangaroo Creek rebounds

Before DSCN0727

Before

On a glorious sunny day last week people from Callandoon, ANZ and our SCLG ventured up the Kangaroo Creek valley (off Upper King Parrot Creek Road) to do a spot of planting along the creek-side. The recent rains made for easy hole preparation, even if accessing the site by 4WD was a bit of a slalom course.

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After

It is amazing the change a small group can make particularly if there is a great lunch waiting at the end of the work.

Thanks Bruce.

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National Guard Day proclaimed

Every day there seems to be a National Day proclaimed – Nat Tree Day, Nat Bat Day, etc. I’d like to propose that last Sunday be proclaimed National Guard Day – not a celebration of border control or civil defense – but a reasonable explanation of why I should be standing in the middle of a foggy paddock on a Sunday morning with the temperature hovering at about 2C. To pick up tree guards, of course!

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Last year on National Tree Day (July 26) our group planted 850 trees and shrubs on Jeanette Williams’ property in Strath Creek and in doing so completed an 8 month fencing project along the King Parrot Creek AND at the same time added the final link in the wildlife corridor between Mt Disappointment and the King Parrot Creek. Last Sunday (now dubbed National Guard Day) a slightly smaller (and colder) group gathered to collect the tree guards so that we can repeat the process on National Tree Day this year (July 31).

DSCN0412-001After 12 months it was amazing to see some of the acacias standing at over 2 metres tall. Personally the sight of healthy robust banksias was gratifying. These are trees which once populated the landscape in large numbers but are now few and far between. Of course the real reason we were out there was to earn our spot at a sunny lunch table provided at Rosemary and David’s. Good food, good wine, good company.

For those interested in attending our next event, pencil 31 July into your dairies. Invitations will be sent out soon.

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Miners trapped!

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Public enemy #1

This type of headline brings back memories of dramatic and heroic events in places such as Beaconsfield, Tasmania and Copiapo, Chile. In many communities around the world these two words strike fear and dread into the hearts of local inhabitants.

In Strath Creek however Trapped Mynas was precisely the focus of a workshop last Saturday sponsored by the Strath Creek Landcare Group (what a difference changing a few letters makes). Seventeen people gathered in the Strath Creek Hall to construct devices to trap the feral Indian Myna.

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Building traps. Fun for young…

The Indian Myna (Acridotheres tristis), pictured above,  was introduced to Victoria in 1862 to control, amongst other things, the native Grapevine Moth (Phalaenoides glycinae) which was declared a pest when it took a liking to the introduced grapevine…it’s a strange old world. The bird was subsequently introduced to other states to similarly control their agricultural insect pests. The myna did little to control these insects.

Unfortunately this aggressive, highly territorial bird out-competes our native birds and arboreal mammals for nesting hollows and preys on eggs, chicks and mammal young. It is one of the world’s most invasive species and has been voted Australia’s most important pest.

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…and old.

Mynas are being found in increasing numbers in the Flowerdale/Strath Creek area. In an effort to control them, individuals from Strath Creek as well as the neighbouring Flowerdale and Dabyminga Landcare Groups gathered to construct Indian Myna traps which will be loaned out to the community. The trap design was taken from the website of the Canberra-based Indian Myna Action Group (click HERE).

So when you read the dramatic headlines Mynas Trapped in Strath Creek, fear not. The events will still be dramatic and heroic but no humans will be hurt.

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Best job in the world

The Basalt to Bay Landcare Network have asked if we could share this around. It’s pretty neat.

Alright everyone. Out with those video cameras. I’m sure we can come up with something similar.

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Focus on Fauna talk soon

frogs flyer

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Nice day for a walk

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After failing to clean up the YCDC Landcare Group cricket team on the real Clean Up Australia Day several weeks ago, the Streekers did a much better job of cleaning up the highways and byways around Strath Creek today, our own Clean Up Australia Day. And the weather was at its autumn best.

IMG_0271In among the 3 cubic metres of rubbish collected, as per usual, there were some treasures. These included the identification cards of several people (which we will hand into the nearest police station), cartoon action figurines, unopened cans of beer and a bong (Terry was the only one to recognise it for what it was). Bruce scored big, firstly finding 2 metres of agi-pipe which is destined for use on Callandoon (gratis). He then went on to find an unopened bottle of Penfolds wine (sans label) which he insisted was Grange Hermitage.

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After separating the recyclables from the rest of the trash into the bins supplied by the Murrindindi Shire (above) we all met up at the Strath Creek Hall where Terry and Janet provided the ’real’ coffee and Susan and Ursula King had prepared a wonderful spread of edible goodies. Bruce and Terry discovered the found wine, though perfectly drinkable was probably not Grange (left).

 

IMG_2365Thanks to Susan for again organising the event. All in all a nice day for a walk… but you have to wonder why we have to do it every year.

 

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