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CRADLE COAST NATURAL RESOURCE MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE ANNUAL REPORT 2011 – 2012


Cradle Coast NRM Annual Report 2011 – 2012 Copyright Š Cradle Coast Authority 2012 No part of this publication may be reproduced without the express prior permission of the publisher. Published by: Cradle Coast Authority PO Box 338 Burnie TAS 7320 Ph: 03 6431 6285 nrm@cradlecoast.com

This report is produced to fulfil the statutory reporting obligations of the Cradle Coast NRM Committee under the Tasmanian Natural Resource Management Act 2002. The Committee is required to report on its activity to the Minister for Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment. This report covers the period from 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2012. The Cradle Coast NRM Committee acknowledges the financial support provided to it by the Australian and Tasmanian Governments.


CO N TE N TS 5

Foreword

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Introduction

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Executive Officer Report

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Cradle Coast NRM Staff and Committee

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In Focus: Sharing a yarn about Tasmania’s native creatures

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Land

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In Focus: Region plays host to landcaring champions

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Coasts

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Water

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Cradle Coast NRM 2011/12 Projects

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Cradle Coast NRM 2011/12 Project Snapshot

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In Focus: Helping Hands on Holidays

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Cradle Coast NRM Financial Statements

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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...the committee and staff have been proactive, seeking to place our region and organisation in the best possible position for the future.

Photograph by www.shutterbirds.com.au

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


F OREWOR D by the Chair of the Cradle Coast NRM Committee On behalf of the Cradle Coast Natural Resource Management Committee I present the Annual Report for 2011-2012. In many respects this has been a year of consolidation for Cradle Coast NRM with the committee and staff working hard to maintain a good program of NRM activities and improve our organisational performance, regardless of reduced budgets and limited options for additional funds. Despite the current fiscal challenges it has been reassuring to see increased recognition for the work of NRM at both the State and Australian Government level and increased demand for input and participation of NRM regions in future initiatives and programs. This is particularly important as we approach the end of the current Australian Government Caring for Our Country program, which provides the majority of our current funding and concludes in 2013. In anticipation of this new phase of NRM and consideration of current constraints on funding and resources, the committee and staff have been proactive, seeking to place our region and organisation in the best possible position for the future. Much of this work is taking place behind the scenes at an organisational level, through ongoing business improvements and strategic planning, and a concerted effort to strengthen our working relationships with regional industries and stakeholders. The benefits of these activities should be realised in the coming years and beyond. It would be appropriate at this point to acknowledge the contribution of committee members Shane Broad and Hank Horton, both of whom left us in this period, but made an invaluable contribution to the region through their unique range of skills and experience. I would like to conclude by thanking the committee and staff for their commitment and dedication in these difficult times and for maintaining such a diverse and innovative program of activities. These of course would not reach fruition without the ongoing support and participation from the community of this region, and I would like to thank you all on behalf of our committee and staff. Rick Rockliff Committee Chairman

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I NTRO D U C TIO N The Cradle Coast region is remarkably diverse, bounded by 2,640 km of coastline and covering 22,520 square kilometres; approximately one-third of Tasmania. The region’s natural resources and landscapes are valuable for their ability to sustain primary industries, their ability to provide ecosystem services such as clean water and air and their intrinsic value as homes for animal and plant communities which also act as tourism drawcards. The region stretches from Narawntapu National Park in the east to King Island and Cape Grim in the far north west and to Port Davey in the south. Its eastern border runs diagonally through Cradle Valley. The region incorporates the nine local government municipalities of Burnie City, Central Coast, Circular Head, Devonport City, Kentish, King Island, Latrobe, Waratah-Wynyard and West Coast. In 2000, these nine local government municipalities established a regional organisation known as the Cradle Coast Authority to facilitate the sustainable development of the Cradle Coast region by hosting and coordinating regional-level issues and projects. The Cradle Coast NRM Committee is an independent committee hosted by the Cradle Coast Authority. The Cradle Coast NRM team work with north west Tasmanian communities to improve natural resources such as our land, water and coasts to ensure a healthy future for the region. Cradle Coast NRM supports community and industry projects, facilitates funding and coordinates natural resource activities and information sharing. The Cradle Coast NRM annual report for 2011/12 outlines the achievements and project deliverables of natural resource management activities within the Cradle Coast region. Additional copies of this report can be obtained from www.cradlecoastnrm.com For information on the objectives and strategic direction of natural resource management in the Cradle Coast, refer to the 2010-15 Regional Natural Resource Management Strategy also available from www.cradlecoastnrm.com

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


EX ECU TIVE O F F IC E R R E P O R T I am pleased to report that despite the economic challenges that presented at the beginning of this period, 2011/12 proved to be a very constructive year. The staff, strongly supported by our committee, managed to maintain and deliver a solid program of NRM activities in the region. Despite the challenges, we continued to roll out new and innovative projects and used these to expand awareness and participation in NRM events across the region. Considerable effort was also applied to improve our understanding of our regional communities and the needs of our key stakeholders. These activities included developing new and existing partnerships, implementing independent performance reviews and trialing new project initiatives. This work is vital if we are to continue to improve and develop our services and work within the region. These changes are also critical to positioning our organisation and region to make the most of the new phase of funding rounds and opportunities. At an organisational level these changes will give us confidence in our strengths and abilities and identify the areas we need to improve. Operationally the focus is to develop our basic suite of NRM activities which deliver so well for the region, and look to build capacity to meet current and future challenges. This includes support for innovation and new project initiatives to embrace technology and maintain and increase community participation. Key to this will be using our extensive networks and partnerships to support our activities, through advocacy, delivery and diversified funding. There has been considerable ground work done across all these areas in the 2011/12 period and it is anticipated that the benefit of this work will be realised in the coming years. Further opportunities are also anticipated through many of the initiatives emerging from the transition to a carbon economy. There has been greater recognition of the role of NRM in this process and while information on the opportunities is still emerging, we are positioned to guide and support related activities in our region. As we approach the end of the current funding cycle we are starting to see many of our projects, long and short term, wind down. It is therefore very refreshing to see that even at this stage new and creative things are happening in the region. Personal highlights for me were many, but initiatives such as the Hooked! project demonstrated how, with creative thinking and good partnerships, we can broaden our reach in the community and achieve positive outcomes. Also the engagement of small land managers and hobby farmers through the Rural Living Round-up, combined with supporting projects such as property management plans, has demonstrated the potential for individuals on a small scale to combine their efforts and achieve significant outcomes. A final highlight would be the work undertaken on Trefoil Island, where we have worked with the Aboriginal community, providing support and assistance to help the community achieve their NRM goals. The common theme with these projects has been the ability to work in partnership with our community, to help achieve their NRM objectives. The challenge for us is to continue to build and maintain these relationships and I hope that future funding rounds will recognise the opportunity and benefits from such an approach. I would like to conclude by thanking the staff and committee of Cradle Coast NRM for their hard work and support this year and acknowledge the significant contributions of Hannah Sadler and James Shaddick who left us in this period. I look forward to working with our community in this coming year and thank you for your continued support and participation. Richard Ingram Executive Officer

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C RA D LE C O A S T N R M S T A FF A N D C O M M I T T EE Tasmania has three Natural Resource Management Committees established under the Tasmanian Natural Resource Management Act 2002 to represent the south, north and Cradle Coast (north west) regions of the state. Cradle Coast NRM is comprised of a committee plus dedicated staff with expertise in agriculture, water, coastal and biodiversity management, monitoring and mapping and community engagement. Collectively Cradle Coast NRM helps identify regional natural resource management priorities, prepare regional strategies, promotes NRM principles and supports the implementation of NRM activities. The Cradle Coast NRM team is based within the Cradle Coast Authority office in Burnie and is supported by the Authority’s finance, administration and communications staff. In addition to the core team, Cradle Coast NRM also supports the West Coast Council to employ a Project Officer in the West Coast Weed and Fire Management Group.

RICHARD INGRAM – EXECUTIVE OFFICER Leads the team and is the link between the Cradle Coast NRM Committee, Cradle Coast Authority and industry stakeholders. SUE BOTTING – OPERATIONS MANAGER Manages the strategic and technical aspects of NRM project delivery. ROSIE BRITTON – BUSINESS SUPPORT MANAGER Manages the business functions including contracting and reporting. BELINDA COLSON – COASTAL COORDINATOR Implements coastal projects and provides GIS technical support. ALISON DUGAND – BIODIVERSITY COORDINATOR Implements projects to ensure healthy ecosystems and threatened species protection and assists with regional weeds management. SPENCER GIBBS – REGIONAL LANDCARE FACILITATOR Works with landholders and community to promote Landcare and sustainable natural resource management practices. STACEY GROVES – ADMINISTRATION ASSISTANT Provides administrative and communications services to support business functions and the implementation of projects. DIONNA NEWTON – FACILITATOR Works with the community and supports community groups to raise awareness of regional NRM issues and implement ‘hands on’ programs such as Shorebird monitoring.

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KARINA ROSE – FACILITATOR Works with school groups and youth organisations and supports community groups to raise awareness of regional NRM issues and implement ‘hands-on’ programs. MATT ROSE – IMPLEMENTATION MANAGER Oversees the on ground practices of NRM project delivery. Implements special projects such as the Natural Disaster Recovery Project and Aboriginal partnership projects. HANNAH SADLER – LAND COORDINATOR Works with producers, industry and extension professionals to develop and promote sustainable farm practices. JAMES SHADDICK – INFORMATION MANAGER Collects and maintains NRM data from regional projects and coordinates program monitoring, evaluation, reporting and improvement. ANNA WIND – FACILITATOR TEAM COORDINATOR Heads the facilitator team, works with the community and supports community groups to raise awareness of regional NRM issues and implement ‘hands-on’ projects including the Land Manager Grants Program. MARK WISNIEWSKI – FACILITATOR Supports community groups to raise awareness of regional NRM issues and implement ‘hands-on’ programs. Implements the Weeds of National Significance project. During 2011/12 the Cradle Coast NRM team was also assisted by Alice Ryder, Regional Landcare Facilitator.

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


CRADLE COAST NRM COMMITTEE The Cradle Coast NRM Committee is comprised of nine members with extensive and diverse agricultural, cultural heritage, scientific, educational and forestry experience. The committee meets monthly to guide NRM projects, define priorities and, as required, oversee regional NRM strategic planning. Committee members are appointed by a selection panel established through a public process for a term of up to three years. * Until January 2012 ** From January 2012

RICK ROCKLIFF – CHAIR

SHANE BROAD – DEPUTY CHAIR*

EVA FINZEL – COMMITTEE MEMBER/ DEPUTY CHAIR**

PETER TYSON – COMMITTEE MEMBER

BRETT NOBLE – COMMITTEE MEMBER

GEOFF KING – COMMITTEE MEMBER

HANK HORTON – COMMITTEE MEMBER

BILL WALKER – COMMITTEE MEMBER

SUE JENNINGS – COMMITTEE MEMBER

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I N FO C U S S H ARIN G A YA R N A B O UT TASMA N IA ’S N A TIV E C R EA T UR ES LOCATION:

Region-wide. Community workshops held in Burnie.

TOTAL FINANCIAL INVESTMENT: $12,000

PARTNERS:

Burnie Regional Art Gallery, the Handweavers Spinners and Dyers Guild of Tasmania, Tasmanian Alkaloids, NRM North and the Southern Coastcare Association of Tasmania.

Nature has long been a source of inspiration for artists when creating beautiful pieces that have the power to educate, entertain and engage audiences. It’s no surprise then that the diversity of Tasmania’s native plants and animals generated some wonderfully colourful and well-crafted woolly replicas in Cradle Coast NRM’s Hooked! project. Hooked!...from the Mountain Dragon to the Handfish... is a community arts project launched by Cradle Coast NRM in 2011/12 that draws inspiration from Tasmania’s natural environment and in turn is inspiring others to think about our special flora and fauna in a new light. Using crochet hooks, knitting needles and yarn, community members have recreated native creatures and their land, coastal or marine habitats for display in the regional arts gallery in 2013. Participants of all ages and levels of craft-skills are involved in the project, attending workshops in June to share yarn-working tips and patterns plus hear educational talks on some of the state’s most special creatures and environments. The workshops attracted 150 participants of all ages from Table Cape, Somerset, Wynyard and Burnie. Importantly, this project is reaching new audiences not traditional engaged in natural resource management initiatives. While working on their Hooked! creations, participants at different workshops were treated to presentations from Peter Whish-Wilson of the Surfrider Foundation about the importance of caring for our oceans; Bec Hubbard of Ocean Planet on the variety of marine life in Tasmanian waters; Jeremy Lane of Aquenal on the intricacies of the endangered Spotted Handfish; or from Michael Thow of All About Reptiles who showcased north west Tasmania’s Mountain Dragon and other local lizards and snakes. The workshops were free of charge thanks to contributions by Cradle Coast NRM, the Burnie Regional Art Gallery, the Handweavers Spinners and Dyers Guild of Tasmania and Tasmanian Alkaloids. Hooked! began as a pilot project in the Cradle Coast region and is now inspiring others in the north and south of the state to find out about our valuable natural resources.

...I was particularly impressed to hear your three presenters... It was also good fun to do the sort of sewing I hadn’t done in years! I’m sure the exhibition next year will be a great success...

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


...the best kids workshops, with great ratio of tutors, fun activities, and interesting presentations...

Photograph by www.shutterbirds.com.au

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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LAN D Soil condition studies test practice change GOAL: To protect and maintain or improve our natural, productive and urban landscapes by ensuring a sustainable balance between economic, environmental and social values.

A program to test different ways of managing soil health in real production systems was launched in 2011/12 and supported by a series of farmers’ soil condition grants. Five grants of up to $10,000 each were awarded to farming businesses in the region to conduct on-farm trials of new soil management techniques in an effort to validate ideas and integrate them into farming practices. The studies are being conducted by dairy, pyrethrum, poppy, potato, onion and mixed vegetable producers from Devonport to Wynyard and on King Island with some trials completed and others set to run over two seasons ending in 2013.

Here are some of the key land projects for 2011/12:

Squeaking Point’s natural values revealed The Squeaking Point Reserve in the Latrobe municipal area has become a great example of environmental education, with thanks to the Rubicon Coast and Landcare Group and funding support from Cradle Coast NRM. In the past year, the group has developed interpretation signage to provide context to two track circuits in the area and to raise visitors’ awareness of the natural values that feature in the surrounding landscape. The circuit tracks are open to bushwalkers and cyclists. The resulting permanent lectern sign at the reserve and posters displayed at information booths at Squeaking Point include maps and information on the local vegetation including the tailed spider orchid and the estuarine yellow sea lavender, both threatened species. The area supports one percent of the world population of Pied oystercatchers and the threatened Eastern barred bandicoot and White bellied sea eagle. Revealing the special natural values and cultural heritage of the reserve aims to provide incentive to visitors to protect the environment at this western edge of the Rubicon estuary.

Taking farm nutrient management further Eight dairy farms and two beef farms on King Island have now participated in soil tests, nutrient mapping and nutrient budgeting with the completion of two additional dairy farms facilitated by King Island NRM Group Inc under Cradle Coast NRM’s Soil Condition Study program. The collection of such a strong base of nutrient data on the island is contributing to improved sustainable agriculture practices and greater levels of land manager awareness of the potential environmental and productivity impacts of nutrient imbalances. To extend the findings of the nutrient studies across the island’s farming community, a public workshop and a field day were held addressing fertiliser management and soil drainage. Guest presenters included Dr Bill Cotching of the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture (TIA), Dr Cameron Gourley of the Department of Primary Industries Victoria, Dr Richard Rawnsley of TIA and Lesley Irvine, TIA Dairy Adviser. The information sharing sessions were free and featured demonstrations of representative soil sampling plus presentations on topics such as drainage methods, electronic nutrient budgeting techniques and soil fertility target setting.

Soil condition studies are being undertaken on diverse topics such as comparing nitrogen nutrition methods in cultivated annual crops, applying Soil Foodweb methods to cropping, and monitoring differences in soil condition due to tillage, controlled traffic and compost application. Botanical Resources Australia, with its head office in Ulverstone, commenced testing the benefits of biofumigation for pyrethrum crops. Two fields have been incorporated into the study, at Forest and at West Pine, and soil and pyrethrum root samples have been collected and tested for the presence of Phytophthora spp. and lesion nematode numbers. The pyrethrum crops were terminated and the fields were half planted with a biofumigant crop and half with an annual ryegrass in late summer. An information session for Botanical Resources staff and contractors is now being planned to coincide with the flowering of the biofumigant crop but prior to incorporation. The study is continuing in the 2012/13 period where the impact of the biofumigant crop will be tested against the ryegrass control.

Shelterbelts aid farm production and biodiversity Twelve applicants in Cradle Coast NRM’s Farm Shelterbelt Program this year received assistance with site assessment and the development of individual shelterbelt plans. The plans all aim to improve farm production levels by reducing wind-based crop damage, increasing livestock production and soil stability, or improving irrigation efficiency whilst providing a diverse habitat for native birds and animals. Grant funds were used for seedling purchase, guards, stakes and/or protective fencing with in-kind labour contributions from the participating land owners. Land owners were also responsible for site preparation and maintenance with visits from Cradle Coast NRM staff providing advice and assistance. The creation of personalised shelterbelt plans helped achieve near 100% survival rate for planted seedlings and the program has been well received with participating land owners promoting the benefits to neighbouring properties. The shelterbelts are becoming significant assets on the participating farms, with one example measuring 700 metres and being 15 metres wide. A copy of the booklet: Native Shelterbelts for North-West Tasmania, Increasing Productivity and Biodiversity on Farms was used as a resource in the Farm Shelterbelt Program and made available to land owners throughout the region via Cradle Coast NRM’s office.

Participating farmers on King Island now have a greater understanding of their soil’s nutrient levels and requirements and are applying this knowledge to avoid wasted nutrient applications, to reduce their production costs and minimise river and wetland pollution.

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


Five grants of up to $10,000 each were awarded to farming businesses in the region to conduct on-farm trials of new soil management techniques.

Photograph by Alice Ryder

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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This year saw the broadening of earlier coastal weed programs into a combined land and coastal weed eradication effort targeting six Weeds of National Significance (WoNS).

Photograph by Hannah Sadler

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


LAN D

( c o n t inued )

Exceeding weed control targets Cradle Coast NRM has continued to be an active member of the Cradle Coast Weed Advisory Group, implementing education, planning and control works throughout the region under the guidance of the Cradle Coast Weed Management Strategy 2010 – 2015. The regional Weeds Advisory Group met quarterly throughout the year and is comprised of representatives from the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment; local government; forestry; mining; the Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association and Cradle Coast NRM. This year saw the broadening of earlier coastal weed programs into a combined land and coastal weed eradication effort targeting six Weeds of National Significance (WoNS). In the 2011/12 period, the enhanced program has achieved 173 hectares of weed control, well over the program’s targeted 78 hectares, including 25 hectares of blackberry, 66 hectares of boneseed, 30 hectares of bridal creeper, 3 hectares of gorse, 29 hectares of seeding willow and 11 hectares of serrated tussock. The bridal creeper management efforts resulted in 132 chaff bags of the weed being emptied at the Dulverton Waste site and deep buried. High conservation public reserves were particularly targeted in the weed control works including the Rocky Cape National Park, Lavinia State Reserve, Peggs Beach Conservation Area and Pardoe Northdown Conservation Area.

Forth/Wilmot catchment benefits from natural connections Biodiversity conservation was the focus of the year’s Natural Connections incentive program, with particular emphasis on the Forth/Wilmot catchment area in the central north west of the region. The catchment features a combination of intensive cropping and grazing land, native bush and lifestyle properties around the Forth River, Wilmot River and tributaries. The initial target of the program was private landholders with the potential to protect threatened species and remnant vegetation. Native plant revegetation, fencing to protect native vegetation, weed control and river restoration works were some of the activities supported under this phase of the project. Following the successful implementation of these initiatives, the project scope was widened to include the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment’s Protected Areas on Private Lands program members, Land for Wildlife participants and Cradle Coast NRM’s Bush Block Bonders group. With the broadened scope, a total of 103 landholders were introduced to the Natural Connections incentive program with an invitation to ‘opt-in’. Site assessments were conducted for 22 properties, resulting in the development of nine projects covering 238 hectares of the Forth/ Wilmot catchment.

A copy of the Coastal Weed Strategy is available for download from www.cradlecoastnrm.com

Meeting the information needs of small acreage holders The success of Cradle Coast NRM’s 2010/11 publication of the Rural Living Guide and the Rural Living Round-up hobby farmer field day ensured a continuation of support for small acreage landholders this year.

In a third phase, the program was advertised throughout the region under the banner of ‘Biodiversity on Farms’ resulting in 52 enquiries and 37 applications. Ten additional projects are now underway as a result of this public promotion encompassing the protection or enhancement of an additional 377 hectares. By the end of 2011/12, Cradle Coast NRM’s biodiversity conservation messages and program support details had directly connected with more than 200 landholders throughout the region.

The field day was again held at the Tasmanian Polytechnic Freer Farm attracting nearly 400 landholders and featuring trade stalls, presentations, machinery and livestock displays. Landholders were able to interact with the variety of land management experts on site to ask questions and gain valuable information to apply to their own properties. Presentations featured fencing and chainsaw demonstrations, tips on managing weeds, an insight to the latest weather forecasting tools, advice on safely co-existing with reptiles and the benefits of native vegetation on different property types. Of particular emphasis this year, was the introduction of a property management planning program for small acreage landholders. The program was open to 20 landholders and provided templates, planning tools, property maps, and access to soil, native vegetation and weed experts to guide land owners in the creation of their own property plans. The free program commenced at the end of the 2011/12 period and is set to continue as an additional project resource within the growing stable of small acreage landholder assistance provided by Cradle Coast NRM’s Regional Landcare Facilitator.

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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I N FO C U S R EGIO N PL A YS HO S T T O LAN D CA R IN G C HA M PI O N S LOCATION:

Statewide event hosted in Stanley. Field trips throughout the region.

TOTAL FINANCIAL INVESTMENT: $8,515

PARTNERS:

Landcare Tasmania.

North west Tasmania put its best foot forward at the 2011 Tasmanian Landcare Conference, not only as the venue for the state-wide event but also as the recipients of six out of 13 available Tasmanian Landcare Awards. This year’s event was held in Stanley on 9th and 10th October and brought together landcarers, coastcarers, community group members, government agency representatives, environmental students and a host of other passionate natural resource managers from around the state. In addition to plenary sessions, delegates attended field trips featuring among other topics Giant Freshwater Lobsters and best practice demonstrations in weed control. Cradle Coast NRM provided support for a plenary session, a field trip for 38 delegates between Stanley and Doctors Rocks and enabled many landcarers from our region to attend with subsidised registrations. The conference was organised by Landcare Tasmania and a highlight was the Landcare Awards and conference dinner on Sunday evening. Congratulations to winners from the Cradle Coast region: • John and Vicki Lillico, Australian Government Innovation in Sustainable Farm Practices Award • Graeme Stevenson, Australian Government Local Landcare Facilitator/Coordinator Award • Marty Bower, Be Natural Young Landcare Leader Award • Rubicon Coast and Landcare Group, Australian Government Coastcare Award • Six Rivers Aboriginal Corporation, Leighton Holdings Indigenous Award • Cradle Coast NRM, Australian Government NRM Award. A special mention also goes to Cradle Coast NRM’s Anna Wind who was a finalist in the Urban Landcare Award. The collective presentation of our region’s and state’s achievements across urban, coastal and agricultural award categories was very inspiring. Tasmanian winners have now been entered in the 2012 National Landcare Awards.

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


...The National Landcare Awards are about celebrating all aspects of grass-roots environmentalism, irrespective of geography, age or gender. Locals from the region can be proud to be represented by Cradle Coast NRM at this level... CEO OF LANDCARE AUSTRALIA

Photograph by www.shutterbirds.com.au

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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C O A STS Keeping a watch on our coastal assets GOAL: To protect and maintain or improve our coastal, estuarine and marine environments by ensuring a sustainable balance between economic, environmental and social values.

Here are some of the key coastal projects for 2011/12:

West coast weeds targeted This year sea spurge and marram grass have been the focus of weed control works over a 6 hectare coastal zone near Macquarie Harbour on the west coast. The site stretched from the harbour north towards Henty River where a containment line was established. West Coast Weed and Fire Management Group members were active in the control works which is part of a two year project encompassing a total of 12 hectares. The program was designed to complement the efforts of SPRAT members (Sea Spurge Pulling in Remote Areas Team) who are working in the Western Wilderness World Heritage Area as far as Cape Sorell near Strahan. Establishing a Henty River containment line is a shared goal for all of the weed management groups working in the area. Weed mapping works conducted by Cradle Coast NRM and the West Coast Weed and Fire Management Group in 2009 and 2010 provided a strong foundation for this year’s control efforts. The control works were completed in two passes, the first targeting parent plants to stop the production of seed within the tidal zone and the second to remove juvenile plants. Plans are in place to repeat the works in 2012/13.

This year saw the launch of a new volunteer-based conservation project, Beachwatch. Similar to the familiar ‘adopt-a-highway’ program, Cradle Coast NRM’s Beachwatch pairs community groups with a section of coast in their local area and assists them in learning about their coast and conducting regular clean ups. The program is an innovative way for Cradle Coast NRM to reach community members not traditionally engaged in natural resource management issues and activities. The program commenced as a pilot in Devonport with the Lions Club of Devonport Mersey, Lions Club of Devonport, Devonport North Rotary Club, Devonport School of Special Education, Don College and East Devonport Primary School all registering to cover the coast from Coles Beach to Tea Tree Lane in East Devonport. Four times a year the volunteers take to their beach to pick up rubbish and other man-made marine debris and record their findings in the Tangaroa Blue Ocean Care Society database. The first collection coincided with Clean Up Australia Day 2012 and resulted in 21 bags of rubbish being removed from the coast. In addition to Don College’s beach clean-ups, students are also learning about sea level rise and monitoring sea levels via TASmarc. Students from all of the participating schools were inducted into the Beachwatch program with information on resident shorebirds and educational sessions on the dangers that debris poses to marine creatures and habitats. The Beachwatch program was launched in Devonport with the close cooperation of the Devonport City Council Sustainability Officer. By the end of the 2011/12 year, Beachwatch had extended to the Waratah-Wynyard and Circular Head municipal areas and was being considered for rollout by NRM regions elsewhere in the state.

Marine debris sculpture competition Trefoil Island management plan Located in the far north west of the region, Trefoil Island is a natural habitat vested in the Aboriginal Land Council of Tasmania (ALCT) on behalf of Tasmanian Aborigines. The island is a popular breeding site for many seabirds including the short-tailed shearwaters (muttonbirds). In 2011, the ALCT’s Land Management workers embarked on weed control and revegetation activities to protect and strengthen the Island’s biodiversity. Activities were guided by recommendations in ALCT’s Draft Trefoil Island Management Plan and the Revegetation and Weed Information Report prepared by Cradle Coast NRM. Funding was provided by the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country via a Cradle Coast NRM Aboriginal Group Small Grant. The workers improved an eroded ridge using a layered planting of the succulent ground cover, Round Leaf Noon Flower (Disphyma crassifolium) and enhanced the numbers of the threatened species Island Purple Grass (Poa poiformis var ramifer), by dividing clumps and replanting. GPS training and mapping demonstrations were provided to participants so they could track progress and plan for additional conservation works in 2012. The information gained from these works is now being incorporated back into the Draft Trefoil Island Management Plan.

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In 2011/12, Coastcare Week was celebrated in Tasmania under a common theme devised by the three NRM regions - Keep the Sea Free of Debris. The theme was transferred into region-specific programs which, for Cradle Coast NRM, resulted in a marine debris sculpture competition for schools. Students from six schools across the region undertook beach rambles and created marine sculptures using plastic bags, bottles, cans, fishing line and other rubbish collected from their local beaches. Participants transformed the debris into 40 imaginative sea creatures which were celebrated in a display at the Burnie Library during Coastcare Week and helped raise community awareness of the impacts and prevalence of marine rubbish. Students also kept a record of their findings to report to the Tangaroa Blue Ocean Care Society’s National Marine Project database. Cradle Coast NRM compiled and promoted a regional calendar of events featuring activities from local Coastcare and ‘Friends of’ groups that were open to the public. An official Coastcare Week launch event was held on 5 December, attended by more than 80 teachers, students and family members. Winners in the marine debris sculpture competition were announced at the event. The celebration was also attended by guest speaker, Peter Whish-Wilson, Tasmanian Chair of the Surfrider Foundation, who presented on the negative impact of plastic on the marine environment.

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


In 2011/12, Coastcare Week was celebrated in Tasmania under a common theme devised by the three NRM regions - Keep the Sea Free of Debris.

Photograph by Karina Rose

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

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Regional land managers have shown great commitment in engaging local communities in biodiversity and coastal improvement projects...

Photograph by Kylie Bowers

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


C O A STS

(c ont inued )

Environmental resources support region’s classrooms

Community engagement in public coastal lands

The Cradle Coast NRM Facilitator team continued to provide educational presentations and coastal-themed classroom resources throughout 2011/12. A key deliverable was the production of the Healthy Oceans for a Healthy Future booklet available in printed and online formats to teachers and students.

Regional land managers have shown great commitment in engaging local communities in biodiversity and coastal improvement projects with assistance from Cradle Coast NRM’s Land Manager Grants which distributed almost $47,000 to 12 projects in the past year. Five of these grants were specific to coastal protection projects.

The booklet was developed as a component of the harbour clean-up project implemented with regional fishers and schools. It contained facts, figures and descriptions of the types of marine debris impacting our coastal environments and tips to improve the situation. Classroom activities and field trip suggestions were also presented in the booklet. A classroom presentation of the Healthy Oceans for a Healthy Future material was also developed featuring fun role plays and hands-on learning opportunities for students. Presentations were delivered at Forth, Devonport, Somerset and Boat Harbour Primary Schools and also at the Kids4Kids Conference held at Camp Banksia. Feedback has been positive and so the team are planning to extend their visits to more institutions and new classes throughout the 2012/13 year. To mark World Oceans Day on 8 June, Cradle Coast NRM Facilitators delivered presentations at the Stanley Seaquarium to raise awareness of the effects of plastic pollutants. At the event, Fishcare Volunteer Coordinator, Damian Heran, and local beachcombing expert and author, Rees Campbell also shared their knowledge with visiting families.

The successful projects involve local communities in a diverse range of activities from coastal weed education and removal to native vegetation enhancement and the development of cultural arts trails. With a particular coastal emphasis, the Parks and Wildlife Service were supported in the delivery of first response whale rescue and seal minding training in Marrawah, Devonport and Ulverstone. The trained volunteer teams can be called upon to assist with whale strandings and to help monitor seals that visit the north west and west coast beaches. The trained teams feature students, holiday shack owners and community members from across the region. Penguin habitat in Stanley in the Circular Head municipal area also received assistance with the delivery of presentations to 50 Stanley Primary School students and teachers on ways to protect Little Penguins that live around the town, penguin biology, and weed identification sessions whilst visiting the penguin colony.

Helping to supplement this school environmental education program are seven fact sheets, accessible to teachers and students as downloads from the Cradle Coast NRM website.

On King Island, the wharf area in Currie is being enhanced and plans are underway to remove boxthorn bushes, plant local coastal species and develop an arts trail. The Rebecca Foreshore near Arthur River on the west coast also benefited from the construction of a 3.5 kilometre fence to exclude livestock from the foreshore and creation of access corridors to protect natural values and Aboriginal heritage. Gorse and blackberry has been removed from the site and local native seeds have been collected in preparation for revegetation.

Implementing the Sea Elephant estuary site plan

Two rounds of the Public Land Manager Community Engagement grants were administered in 2011/12.

The Facilitators also introduced 60 grade 8 students at Ulverstone’s Leighland Christian School to the potential hazards caused by plastic marine debris in a similar presentation held in May.

King Island’s Sea Elephant estuary was enhanced this year with the implementation of key components of a site plan developed to protect and improve a 13 hectare area of the Lavinia State Reserve. Weed control was conducted by contractors over 7 hectares and native plants on the site were propagated by local school students in preparation for revegetation works. Planning also began for the development of a walking track and interpretative signage to raise awareness of the area’s natural values and the student’s efforts. It is hoped that by highlighting the environmental and social assets of the area, the incidence of destructive behaviour that has degraded local plant communities will reduce. The improvements to the estuary’s access is expected to be completed in 2013. The Lavinia State Reserve has also been the focus of Cradle Coast NRM-funded weed control works in the Nook Swamp area. Special efforts have been made in the 2011/12 period to clear 32 hectares of thistles and attention is now turning to eradication of the blue butterfly bush.

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

21


W A TE R Collaborative effort helps flood recovery GOAL: To protect and maintain or improve our rivers, wetlands and groundwater environments by ensuring a sustainable balance between economic, environmental and social values.

Notes: Cradle Coast NRM did not receive funding for water projects from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country for the 2011/12 period. Any water protection, maintenance, improvement or education projects undertaken were funded as part of Cradle Coast NRM’s Community Capacity, Skills, Knowledge and Engagement Program or via the Flood Recovery Fund initiative. Here are some of the key water projects for 2011/12:

Students play important role in Manuka Creek education Strahan Primary School worked in partnership with the West Coast Weed and Fire Management Group to improve the town’s Manuka Creek habitat and highlight the natural features of this area to residents and visitors. Using a $6,000 Cradle Coast NRM grant and with $7,600 cost contributions from the school, the students created six interpretation signs to raise awareness of the local plant species including the Cutting grass, Manna gum, Mountain pepper, Man fern, Swamp paperbark and the Native currant. Each sign featured student drawings of the plants and information on their features and distribution which was derived from classroom-based research. The signs were erected along a newly constructed, 30 metre boardwalk which provides additional protection for the riparian zone and improved vantage points to see the plant species and visiting birds and wildlife. In the past year, students have also been involved in replanting native species along Manuka Creek after a large pine tree was removed from the area.

Land for Wildlife area celebrates World Rivers Day After nearly 12 months of planning and preparation works following a major flood event, access to the special Land for Wildlife area at French’s Road Reserve was restored with enhancements to walkways and completion of rehabilitation works. The Waratah-Wynyard Council and a Work for the Dole crew from Youth and Family Focus helped to restore access in time for an official opening by Mayor Robby Walsh in early December. The works provided a welcome last link in a circuit walk throughout the reserve that takes in the area’s dry and wet stringybark forests. Interpretive signs have been installed including maps and distance information to enhance the reserve’s walking experiences and grow visitors’ knowledge of the local flora and fauna. Cradle Coast NRM provided funding to assist with both the bridge repairs and with reserve signage, the latter via the Community Group Grants program awarded to the Friends of French’s Road Reserve. Wynyard Landcare volunteer members also assisted in the site’s restoration. The reserve later played host to a World Rivers Day celebration and Polytechnic students lent a hand with riparian plantings.

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

Extreme rain events and floods in the summer of 2011 disturbed the banks of the Leven River and left the ecosystem vulnerable to Foxglove, Spear Thistle and other weed infestations. Recognising the potential for weed and erosion problems to take hold, Cradle Coast NRM utilised $50,000 of the Caring for our Country National Natural Disaster Package to work with local landholders to revegetate vulnerable riparian areas and to monitor and treat weed outbreaks. Sites were selected by analysing aerial images taken post-flood in conjunction with site visits by Cradle Coast NRM staff. The project encompassed five hectares of riverbank stabilisation and 25 hectares of weed control works around Gunns Plains, North Motton, Ulverstone and the Dial Range. Natural assets including the Sith Cala Nature Reserve, South Leven Conservation Area and a threatened White Gum forest on private land were also important targets of the works. Collaboration was key to ensuring a successful outcome for such a large and time-critical project. In addition to the labour and material contributions from landholders and all levels of government, the project was assisted by the Tasmanian Polytechnic Conservation and Land Management classes of 2011/12 (Burnie campus). Students assisted with seed collection, propagation, seedling supply and plantings to stabilise the river banks.

Burrowing crayfish benefit from healthy wetlands Expanding the wetland within the Somerset Primary School grounds and providing habitat for burrowing crayfish has been the focus of environmental education that is delivering lasting benefits. The school has worked with a consultant funded by Cradle Coast NRM to produce a vegetation and habitat rehabilitation plan for the school’s wetlands area, including recommendations for vegetation management, a revegetation list, site map to define revegetation areas and Burrowing crayfish (Engaeus fossor) distribution. A threatened vegetation community, Swamp paperbark (Melaleuca ericifolia) was found to be central to the area’s remnant plant species. Combining knowledge gained from classroom investigations and presentations from Cradle Coast NRM Facilitators and other expert speakers, the children, teachers and school community have increased their appreciation of healthy waterways and how the plants, animals and microbes coexist as an ecosystem. Using a Cradle Coast NRM School Small Grant to assist with materials and educational resources, the students have planted hundreds of native species at the school’s Melaleuca wetland to enhance the habitat of the resident Burrowing crayfish. The Engaeus fossor has a relatively robust population in Tasmania but is subject to threats of water pollution, soil disturbance, erosion and vegetation clearing. Future initiatives will see the care of the wetlands extend to the wider community with the school’s plans to restore a 1,200 metre Outdoor Learning Trail with the support of Cradle Coast NRM grant funds.


Photograph by Anna Wind

Enhancing the Don River environment Weeds in the Don Reserve and along the banks of the Don River have been declining over the last ten years due to a sustained effort from the Friends of Don Reserve, Devonport City Council and Cradle Coast NRM. Weekly working bees of two hours duration help ensure that infestations are contained and regrowth is kept to a minimum. Occasionally the task at hand is beyond that of the volunteers’ capacity, despite their unwavering commitment to the preservation of this natural area and its public walking tracks. Cradle Coast NRM Community Grants have assisted in these cases, to provide the support of professional weed contractors, their knowledge and equipment. Throughout October, November and December in 2011, contractors undertook cutting and spraying of gorse, Spanish heath and broom weed outbreaks and returned key areas of the reserve to a manageable status for the volunteers. The control helps protect Eucalyptus amygdalina and Melaleuca ericifolia native communities along the river and estuary. Community members and Friends of Don Reserve volunteers were also engaged in sea spurge weeding of the Coles Beach foreshore and revegetation works along the Don River and Don Reserve in a series of six working bees organised by the Devonport City Council Sustainability Officer.

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

23


CRADLE COAST NRM 2011/12 PROJECTS Commenced in 11/12

Completed in 11/12

Ongoing projects commenced prior to 11/12

Project

Status

in 2011/12

Funding source

LAND Farming sustainability – Future systems for intensive cropping (controlled traffic)

Caring for our Country

Climate Ready Farming Leaders

FarmReady

Regional Landcare Facilitator

Caring for our Country

Dairy industry nutrient management extension

Caring for our Country

Integrated pest management workshops

Caring for our Country

Regional cropping industry profile

Caring for our Country

Small grants to school farms

Caring for our Country

Controlled traffic farming facilitation and promotion

Caring for our Country

Farmer Soil Condition Studies

Caring for our Country

Property management planning

Caring for our Country

Dairy industry survey

Caring for our Country

Shelterbelt incentives

Caring for our Country

Tarkine natural values assessment associated with Tarkine tourism development

Regional Investment Proposal 2

Native habitat incentives

Caring for our Country

Vegetation condition assessment monitoring

Caring for our Country

Tarkine fungi field surveys and community workshops

Caring for our Country

Threatened species field identification flip book

Caring for our Country

Natural Connections incentive program

Caring for our Country

Biodiversity on Farms incentive program

Caring for our Country

Community group facilitation support

Caring for our Country

Community Group Grants – biodiversity

Caring for our Country

Land Manager Partnership Grants – biodiversity

Caring for our Country

School Grants – biodiversity

Caring for our Country

Recreational users engagement – Mount Roland

Caring for our Country

Ecosystem services mapping – improving data analysis in priority areas

Caring for our Country

Implementing management plans for high conservation value areas

Caring for our Country

Control of sea spurge to protect the World Heritage Area

Caring for our Country

Regional Weeds Advisory Group – regional weed coordination

Caring for our Country

Management of Weeds of National Significant (WoNS) in the region

Caring for our Country

WATER River rehabilitation works

Caring for our Country

Threatened species works and monitoring

Caring for our Country

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


Status

Project

in 2011/12

Funding source

Inglis River pathways vegetation enhancement

Caring for our Country

Natural Connections incentive program

Caring for our Country

Biodiversity on Farms incentive program

Caring for our Country

Leven and Mersey flood recovery

National Disaster Recovery Package

COASTS Methodology to measure coastal condition

Regional Investment Proposal 2

Lavinia Reserve on-ground projects to rehabilitate and protect the coastal environment

Caring for our Country

Robbins Passage-Boullanger Bay tidal and sediment monitoring

Caring for our Country

King Island NRM Strategy implementation

Caring for our Country

Development and implementation of a weed management plan for Howie Island

Caring for our Country

Penguin Management Plan for Stanley

Caring for our Country

Clean-up Australia Day activities and supporting marine educational products for schools

Caring for our Country

On-ground works, management planning and communications activities by Six Rivers Aboriginal Corporation

Caring for our Country

Small grants to Aboriginal organisations

Caring for our Country

Small grants to schools for environment and cultural projects

Caring for our Country

Aboriginal cultural values – communications products

Regional Investment Proposal 2

Aboriginal community engagement strategy

Caring for our Country

Aboriginal partnership development

Caring for our Country

Community group MERI system – project management and reporting system for community groups

Regional Investment Proposal 2

Development of environmental educational resources

Caring for our Country

Manuka Creek boardwalk and signage

Caring for our Country

Helping Hands on Holidays: Short-term visitors volunteering with community groups

Caring for our Country

Aquaculture and kelp harvesting environmental incentives

Caring for our Country

Community group facilitation support

Caring for our Country

Community Group Grants – coastal

Caring for our Country

Land Manager Partnership Grants – coastal

Caring for our Country

School Grants – coastal

Caring for our Country

Community volunteer shorebird monitoring program

Caring for our Country

Hooked! Community arts environmental education program

Caring for our Country

Beachwatch: Community groups and schools adopting local beaches

Caring for our Country

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

25


CRADLE COAST NRM 2011/12 PROJECT SNAPSHOT

JULY

AUG

SEPT

LOCAL PLANTS FOR LOCAL CONDITIONS

BRIGHT FUTURE IN ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

UPSKILLING IN THE BATTLE AGAINST WEEDS

Local planting guides for each of the nine municipal areas of the Cradle Coast region were developed to help residents identify the indigenous plants best suited to specific soil types, conditions and growing purposes.

The Primary Industry Centre for Science Education (PICSE) Science Investigation Awards develop students’ interest in science and skills in communication, team work, organisation, literacy and numeracy. Approximately 450 students from 17 schools across the region took part in this year’s competition, presenting an impressive 218 science projects.

The region’s weed management skills received a boost with the delivery of Weedbusters and Chemcert Courses in Burnie and Currie. The courses were open to regional weed control stakeholders such as the West Coast Weed and Fire Management Group, Forestry Tasmania, Bluestone Mines, Transend Networks, West Coast Council, King Island Council, King Island NRM Group and local farmers.

In addition to listing the scientific and common names of local plants, the easy-to-read guides also indicate the vegetation community, soil type, common uses and propagation methods for each plant. A basic soil testing technique is also included to simplify soil identification and assist plant selection for individual backyards, rural blocks and other planting areas. The guides were developed as a free regional resource and can be read online at the Cradle Coast NRM website or downloaded for future reference. Compiled with information from Australian Plants Society Tasmania North West Group, Understorey Network, King Island NRM Group and Oldina Nursery.

Cradle Coast NRM was particularly involved in this year’s competition as sponsors of the Environmental Science category for projects exploring natural resource management. Cradle Coast NRM staff also participated as judges along with other community and industry members. Six Environmental Science awards were presented to students from grades 5/6 through to year 11/12 on diverse topics ranging from grey water testing and roof wind resistance to the erosion control effects of sea spurge. Collaboration with the University of Tasmania Primary Industry Centre for Science Education. Photograph by PICSE

Photograph by Martin Finzel

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

As a result, an extra 50 people in the region have additional skills in the control of weeds. The training addressed the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Control of use) Regulations 1995 including units such as Transport, handling and storage of chemicals, Treating weeds, and Preparing and applying chemicals. Collaboration with training providers Tasmanian Polytechnic and the Tasmanian Skills Institute. Photograph by Matt Rose


OCT

NOV

DEC

CELEBRATING MUNGINABITTA’S COUNTRY

DISCUSSING THE CARBON ECONOMY

VOLUNTEERS STAND THE TEST OF TIME

The Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI) commenced in December 2011 as a voluntary offset scheme providing participants with carbon credits for the carbon pollution saved or stored by their activities. The CFI is designed to credit emissions reductions or increases in carbon stores beyond what commonly occurs already.

The Resident Shorebird Monitoring project marked its two year anniversary this month with a celebratory lunch to thank the project’s 100 volunteers. Their dedication to twice-yearly counting of shorebirds on 41 beaches in the region has helped to fill a knowledge gap in the status of four key bird species between Stanley and Narawntapu National Park.

The Six Rivers Aboriginal Corporation celebrated the launch of their book, Munginabitta’s Country: flora and fauna at Panatana and Marshalls Hill by Sarah Lloyd. The book provides a comprehensive guide to the area around the Rubicon Estuary including its plants, animals, birds, fungi and invertebrates. More than 150 species of plants are recorded covering single specimens to widespread flora populations. For over 10,000 years the Punnilerpanner people inhabited the district and the book shares many traditional uses for the variety of local food, fibre and tools. Munginabitta’s Country is a handy reference for both novice and experienced naturalists. Cradle Coast NRM supported the book’s production and copies are now available for purchase from the Tiagarra Aboriginal Culture Centre at the Mersey Bluff in Devonport. Collaboration with Six Rivers Aboriginal Corporation.

To better understand the impact and potential of the CFI on residents, businesses and local government in the Cradle Coast region, a public forum was held in Burnie featuring Anthony Bennie from the Department of Climate Change and Energy Efficiency; Dr Richard Rawnsley of the University of Tasmania School of Agriculture; and Dr Martin Moroni, an Australian Forest Carbon Scientist at Forestry Tasmania. Similar forums were also held in the north and south of the state and all revealed the community’s interest in information on the government’s implementation and regulation plans. Collaboration with University of Tasmania, Institute for Regional Development Cradle Coast campus and the Australian Government’s Regional Development Australia (Tasmania).

At the anniversary, volunteers were presented with a booklet containing summarised data from the first four counts indicating bird numbers seen on the beaches. This same data is also sent to Birds Tasmania, Birds Australia and DPIPWE’s Natural Values Atlas after each count period to help inform coastal management decisions. Cradle Coast NRM further supports the project by running shorebird identification workshops open to volunteers and the general public and shorebird education in primary schools across the region. Collaboration with Ornithologist, Hazel Britton. Photograph by Bruce Bain

Photograph by Karina Rose

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

27


CRADLE COAST NRM 2011/12 PROJECT SNAPSHOT

JAN

FEB

MARCH

CLEANING UP OUR HARBOUR HABITATS

DISCOVERING SOMERSET BEACH

SCHOOL SMALL GRANTS PROGRAM

Northdown beach and Macquarie Harbour were the targets of coastal and marine debris clean-ups with the help of local school students and commercial fishers. At one harbour clean-up involving Petuna staff, a total of 306 debris items were collected including rope, bottles, plastics and fragments of foam buoys.

Somerset residents and visitors participated in a Beach Discovery Walk at the end of February to learn about their local coastal environment and its shells, sponges and shorebirds.

The Cradle Coast NRM School Small Grants program was open between mid February and mid March for a new round of applications from schools, educational institutions, youth organisations and early learning centres across the region. The grants program provided funding of up to $1,500 for environmental projects under two categories – general and cultural heritage.

Two classes from Wesley Vale Primary School were joined by teachers, parents and members of the public to clean-up the foreshore at Northdown beach. Their efforts were supported by Fishcare volunteers and the Parks and Wildlife Service providing information and presentations on the impacts of man-made marine debris. Commercial fishers and salmon farms undertaking the Macquarie Harbour clean-ups include Tassal and Petuna. These organisations have also shown their commitment to the health of the harbour by developing and implementing waste mitigation plans. Collaboration with Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service, Fishcare, Tasmanian SeaNet and OceanWatch Australia.

The walk was led by Cradle Coast NRM’s Anna Wind and featured local shell expert and author, Rees Campbell. A group of 16 participants took the ramble along the coast and were introduced to native plant and weed species, sea grasses, sand hoppers, crabs, resident Red capped plovers, and different types of seaweed and corals. The discovery of seagrass on the beach was a good indication of an off-shore bed, which is likely to be an important nursery for small fish. The decaying seagrass washed onto the shoreline also serves as an important asset for shorebirds that feed on the sand hoppers (amphipods) found among the stems. Collaboration with Rees Campbell and the Waratah-Wynyard Council. Photograph by Anna Wind

Through the program, schools were encouraged to undertake practical environmental education projects such as establishing a bush tucker or biodiversity garden in the school grounds or leading excursions to significant natural resource management sites. Projects funded in this round included creation of a worm farm and water harvesting by Penguin High School and a resource for Aboriginal studies based on native plants in the Ulverstone Primary School Aboriginal garden. Collaboration with schools of north west Tasmania through funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country. Photograph by Matt Archer

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


APRIL

MAY

JUNE

ACHIEVING NATURAL CONNECTIONS

PROTECTING PENGUIN NESTING SITES

WEED IDENTIFICATION GOES MOBILE

The Natural Connections incentive program encouraging biodiversity conservation was launched in 2011 as a two year initiative. This year has seen the delivery of practical results on nine participating properties with the enhanced protection of burrowing crayfish, giant freshwater lobsters, bird habitats and native vegetation communities.

Doctors Rocks in the Waratah-Wynyard municipality is an important Little Penguin nesting site within the region that is well cared for by Wynyard Landcare volunteers. The group was given a helping hand via a Cradle Coast NRM Community Grant to purchase materials and plant stock to boost the area’s native vegetation and provide additional shelter to the Little Penguins. A boardwalk was previously installed to protect the penguin’s nesting areas.

The top 10 weeds of the Cradle Coast region were put in the spotlight with the launch of an Android compatible mobile application. The application was developed in-house by Cradle Coast NRM Facilitator, Mark Wisniewski, to provide weed identification and control tips on the region’s most invasive weeds to residents when they are out in the field.

In one example, a 100 acre property around Wilsons Creek applied the Natural Connections funding to construct fencing to protect remnant vegetation and create native species corridors and buffers for wildlife. The land owner’s efforts are providing early results with an increase in the presence of bush birds and the arrival of a breeding pair of Wedgetailed eagles. The nine properties involved in the first phase of the Natural Connections incentive program are delivering improvements to 238 hectares within the Forth/Wilmot catchment. Collaboration with Forth/Wilmot land owners.

Site preparation, weed mat laying and plantings took place in May. An impressive 250 native coastal tree and grass species are being planted over a series of working bees in the early winter months while the nesting site is quiet. To ensure a good start for the native plants, efforts have been made to clear the area of blackberries and other weeds. Collaboration with the Wynyard Landcare group, Parks and Wildlife Service and Waratah-Wynyard Council through funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country.

The easy-to-use guide is free to download and features photos and text descriptions of weeds categorised by climbers, shrubs and grasses. Users of the application can also simply report weed infestations via their mobile device. Some of the weeds featured in the mobile application include bridal creeper, boneseed, seeding willow and African boxthorn. The mobile application was developed by Cradle Coast NRM as a free, educational resource and weed management tool for use throughout the region. Photograph by Mark Wisniewski

Photograph by Alison Dugand

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

29


I N FO C U S HE L P IN G H A N D S O N H O L I D A Y S : S T A Y A WHIL E A N D HE L P A MI L E LOCATION:

Region-wide. Promotions extended interstate and across Tasmania.

TOTAL FINANCIAL INVESTMENT: $7,500

PARTNERS:

Cradle Coast Authority tourism team, Campervan and Motorhome Club of Australia, Coastcare, Landcare and ‘Friends of’ groups, Parks and Wildlife Service, and the Tasmanian Visitor Information Network.

Each year more than 46,000 motorhome and caravan visitors holiday in Tasmania and enjoy the Cradle Coast region for an average of 18 days. Most are professional couples aged between 45 and 64 years who spend an average of $3000 per visit exploring the region’s communities and natural landscapes. In 2011, Cradle Coast NRM conducted a research study to better understand this growing visitor segment and their attitudes towards the region’s natural values. The study also revealed that visitors were often investigating the region as a place to live and were looking to make special local connections while here. Cradle Coast NRM has successfully managed a visiting volunteers program of environmental engagement for a number of years. Typically these engagements have paired Conservation Volunteers Australia participants with community groups and land managers in the region who are undertaking revegetation or weed management works and would benefit from some helping hands. Based on the research findings and experience with earlier visiting volunteer programs, Cradle Coast NRM embarked on an ambitious six month trial project in the second half of 2011/12. The NRM team partnered with the region’s tourism authority, to devise and launch Helping Hands on Holidays. Helping Hands on Holidays promoted a calendar of natural resource volunteering opportunities to campervan and motorhome club members. Opportunities for environmental engagement were promoted in the Caravan and Motorhome Club of Australia’s magazine - Wanderer, to travellers on the Spirit of Tasmania ships, in Visitor Information Centres in north west Tasmania, via the Cradle Coast NRM and Cradle Coast tourism websites, and via direct distribution of flyers at popular free and paid camping sites and motorhome rallies throughout the region and state. The calendar of volunteering opportunities was compiled by Cradle Coast NRM through its extensive network of community groups, public land managers and Local Council staff. Interested visitors were required to register to participate in events and Cradle Coast NRM undertook participant insurance and induction training. The volunteer activities featured all kinds of jobs for all kinds of ages and capabilities; bound by a sense of community spirit and connectivity to the local people and their environment. Example activities included night-time counting of Little Penguins on the north coast, helping to identify threatened plants in grassland areas, and assisting with weed control and maintenance at the Tasmanian Arboretum. There were 19 incidences of Helping Hands on Holidays volunteer participation throughout the trial period. Those who were engaged found the experience rewarding and, as a result, often took part in more than one scheduled volunteer activity. Two key challenges faced the trial: declining tourist numbers in Autumn and Winter and difficulty in communicating efficiently with these mobile travellers who often don’t have a regular form of contact or a set itinerary. A full assessment of the trial is scheduled at time of writing. Strong operational procedures, communication tools and partnerships were formed from the Helping Hands on Holidays trial which remain as assets for future Cradle Coast NRM volunteer engagement projects.

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Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


...really interesting – meeting new and dedicated people and putting in a little bit of help for a very worthwhile cause. I would certainly recommend the holiday activity to anyone who is prepared to get off the tourist ‘junket’ and be involved in some great activities. My only regret is that I left my camera behind – but that will provide me with a good excuse to come back again!

Photograph by www.shutterbirds.com.au

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

31


The financial statements presented have been compiled from the audited financial statements of the reporting entity, the Cradle Coast Authority, for the year ended 30 June 2012.

C RA D LE C O A S T N A TU R A L R ES O UR C E MA N A GEMENT C O MP RE HE N S IV E IN COM E S T A T EMEN T For year ended 30 June 2012

Note REVENUE

2012

2011

$

$

Grant Income

1

2,571,064

2,558,000

Other Income

2

49,815

34,661

61,064

65,719

2,681,943

2,658,380

1,059,784

1,004,492

994,987

1,670,457

420,974

545,790

2,475,745

3,220,739

206,198

-562,359

Interest Income Total Revenue

EXPENSES Employee Costs Project Delivery and Consultancy Other Operating Expenses

3

Total Expenses

Comprehensive Result

32

4

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


The financial statements presented have been compiled from the audited financial statements of the reporting entity, the Cradle Coast Authority, for the year ended 30 June 2012.

C RA D LE C O A S T N A TU R A L R ES O UR C E MA N A GEMENT BAL A N CE S HE E T As at 30 June 2012

ASSETS

2012

2011

$

$

Current assets Cash at Bank

1,168,863

1,021,046

16,466

15,425

6,508

6,444

Total current assets

1,191,837

1,042,915

Non-current assets

Total non-current assets

1,191,837

1,042,915

Trade Payables

24,320

67,281

Superannuation Payable

17,992

28,296

Provision for annual leave

46,507

47,594

Provision for parental leave

10,000

PAYG payable

15,074

16,682

1,898

22,083

115,791

181,936

Provision for long service leave

22,623

13,754

Total non-current liabilities

22,623

13,754

138,414

195,690

1,053,423

847,225

Accumulated Funds

847,225

1,409,584

Comprehensive Result

206,198

-562,359

1,053,423

847,225

Trade Receivables Interest Accrued

TOTAL ASSETS

LIABILITIES Current liabilities

Payroll tax payable

Total current liabilities

Non-current liabilities

TOTAL LIABILITIES

NET ASSETS

EQUITY

TOTAL EQUITY

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012

33


The financial statements presented have been compiled from the audited financial statements of the reporting entity, the Cradle Coast Authority, for the year ended 30 June 2012.

C RA D LE C O A S T N A TU R A L R ES O UR C E MA N A GEMENT NOTES TO F IN A N CIA L S T A T EM EN T S For year ended 30 June 2012 Note 1

Grant Income Natural Heritage Trust Dept of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry DPIPWE*

2

3

2012

2011

$

$ 96,030

50,000

318,701

184,000

2,156,333

2,324,000

2,571,064

2,558,000

NRM North

13,509

14,718

NRM South

14,969

7,672

External contributions to projects

21,337

12,271

49,815

34,661

20,925

20,499

Other Income

Other Operating Expenses Advertising Fringe Benefits Tax

767

514

IT Support

13,220

13,992

Meeting, Planning & Forum Expenses

11,180

18,938

61,139

6,406

7,442

Postage Printing & Stationery

28,935

24,727

Recruitment & Relocation Costs

13,497

3,557

Rent - Rates & Taxes

25,774

24,500

Sundries

11,193

9,289

Travelling Expenses

25,227

39,216

8,077

2,950

36,479

53,442

Community Capacity Phone Faxes & Internet

Audit Fees Communication Weeds Eradication

15,864

117,298

123,330

6,770

12,236

480

476

Vehicle Expenses

37,566

43,399

Committee Expenses

31,954

28,928

Office Costs Seminars, Conferences & Subs Bank Fees

Sponsorship Capital Expenditure 4

4,214

2,241

21,012

39,111

420,974

545,790

847,225

1,453,584

Comprehensive Result Project Carry Over 10/11 Prior Year Adjustment ** 11/12 Surplus *** Total Project unexpended Funds

-44,000

206,198

(562,359)

1,053,423

847,225

* Includes DPIPWE, Caring for our Country 10/11 and Caring for our Country Coastcare Grants. ** DPIPWE Invoice raised twice in 09/10 *** Funds received in current financial year but not yet expended.

34

Cradle Coast NRM annual report 2011–2012


Cradle Coast NRM would like to acknowledge the following photographers for their contribution to this publication: Jen Evans, Jenny Archer, Alice Ryder, Hannah Sadler, Martin Finzel, Matt Rose, Karina Rose, Bruce Bain, Anna Wind, Mark Wisniewski, Alison Dugand, Kylie Bowers, Rosie Britton and Matt Archer Cover photograph by www.shutterbirds.com.au This report is printed on recycled paper Proudly designed by Emma Duncan, Red Bird Design


Cradle Coast NRM 30 Marine Terrace PO Box 338 Burnie TAS 7320 Ph: 03 6431 6285 Fax: 03 6431 7014 nrm@cradlecoast.com Cradle Coast NRM is an independent committee hosted by the Cradle Coast Authority

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Profile for Cradle Coast Authority

NRM Annual Report 2011-2012  

NRM Annual Report 2011-2012

NRM Annual Report 2011-2012  

NRM Annual Report 2011-2012