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Bushcare news SPRING 2013

Reading Snake Behaviour Species to watch out for.

Nursery Volunteers’ Field Trip Inspecting the results of their labours.

Caring for the Hawkesbury-Nepean Estuary Floating Landcare helping to manage the spread of weeds.

National Tree Day Repairing the Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest.

Birdwatchers Basics A few tips on birdwatching.

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Staff reports

ı Volunteer reports ı Bushcare training ı Office matters ı Diary dates and events

Newsletter managed by Hornsby Shire Council Natural Resources Branch

For more information visit

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare


BUSHCARE NEWS

Major Day Out A celebration of our unique bushland! Bushcare’s Major Day Out is a day designed to give everyone the opportunity to find out more about our local bushland. Specifically, what is being done and what can be done in the bush where you live, so that the next generation can experience the bushland. It’s a fun day where everyone, young and old can work and learn alongside experts. There are a range of activities; weed removal, walks, planting, as well as native plant identification and great morning teas. There were six sites in total; Epping

sites included Midson Rd, Epping Oval, Stanley Rd and Bedford Rd/Cooper. As well as Observatory Park in Beecroft and Murray Rd in Cheltenham. Council produced banners to promote the event at sites. All sites were advertised in the local paper and on our website. All people who attended the event were treated to a site tour, an introduction to bushcare and a lovely morning or afternoon tea. Some groups gained new volunteers! If you are interested in hosting a Major Day Out in September 2014 please talk to your Bushcare Trainer.

Working on the roadside Our Bushcare sites are presently being assessed to determine if we require traffic control plans. Our Bushcare Trainers and field staff will receive training in applying traffic control plans. Should your group work within 3m of a trafficable road lane, please discuss options with your trainer or the Environmental Scientist – Bushcare on 9847 6362. Until we have assessed all Bushcare sites please do not work within 3m of the kerb.

Christmas party and bushcare competitions Contact Details Hornsby Shire Bushcare Earthwise Cottage 28 Britannia St, Pennant Hills General Bushcare enquiries E: bushcare@hornsby.nsw.gov.au F: 02 9484 3588 Mail: PO BOX 37 Hornsby NSW 1630 Environmental Scientist – Bushcare Leanne Johnston (Mon to Wed) and Meron Wilson (Thur to Fri) 9847 6362 Bushland Coordinator Community Programs Danielle Sutton (Mon to Thur) 9847 6360 Nursery and Guided Bushwalk Program Coordinator Ross Rapmund 9847 6361 Incident and hazard reporting 9847 4848 (outside business hours)

2  SPRING 2013

This year’s Bushcare Christmas Party is a supper bush dance so you have the opportunity to bring along your dance partner. For those of you who don’t have dancing shoes you can sit amongst your Bushcare friends and catch up since last year. There is plenty of space in Galston Community Centre and its air conditioned too. Be sure to book early, numbers are strictly limited! For details see Diary Dates. Note the previously published eNews times for the Christmas party have changed; refer to your invitation for correct times.

Our Beautiful Bushland – Bushcare Photo Competition Thank you to everyone who sent in photos for the competition. All the photos were on display in the Earthwise Cottage and on the website at hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcarephotocomp during October and November. The winner will be announced at the Christmas party.

Before and After – Bushcare Photo Competition There were also many great entries for the bushcare before and after photo competition. We look forward to these being used in future displays. Some of you have made some excellent progress, particularly the grant projects.

Poetry and Prose Competition The Poetry and Prose competition is still open. Competition closes Friday 15 November. Thank you ms ite . to everyone who has made a submission. s me ew Entries will be judged at the Christmas d n elco n w sa b e Party and the winner announced. The rie ver y o we hcar t s s e y s r h a winners will be displayed at local u /bu nt Yo alw s o ov.au libraries throughout the year. u are it g Vis nsw. . by rns ho


My Bushcare story We recently asked you to submit your Bushcare story to assist us “add the personal touch” to promoting the Bushcare Volunteer program. Thank you to those that have submitted your stories. They are fabulous and we wish to encourage you to continue to submit your entries. We will be displaying them at this years Bushcare Christmas party. We would also like to pop them on our website, Facebook, local media releases and use on display material when exhibiting Bushcare. So by providing your submission you are agreeing to use your photo and your story for this promotional material. Please give us your Bushcare story in approximately 80 words and a photo of you at your site in your bushcare gear.

Barbara and David D

armanin.

Please submit an electronic version to dsutton@hornsby.nsw.gov.au. For more information, contact Danielle Sutton 9847 6360.

David Darmanin of the Bambara/ Darmanin Bushcare group since 1996

Good to see the vegetation community develop by forming layers from ground storey, mid storey and canopy. The return of birds and wildlife to the area is very satisfying to provide this wildlife corridor.

New Bushcode Manual Coming soon! A Training Manual for all Bushcare volunteers. When you undertake the Bushcode workshop for the first time (or as a refresher) you will soon receive a manual with all the important information, a safety guide and tips to help you become a Bushcarer. It should be available for all in the coming months – look out for it!

Barbara Darmanin of the Bambara/ Darmanin Bushcare group since 1996

Its relaxing, its social, its hard work but gives great satisfaction and reward to see the positive change over the past 17 years of doing Bushcare. This area was once heavily weed infested and now is improved bush.

Group leaders There have been so many changes over the years; originally group leaders were the keepers of the sign-on sheets. Now due to legislative changes some Bushcare group leaders are responsible for so much more. We are making every attempt to keep the Bushcare program flexible and accommodating for our all volunteers. Soon you will receive a survey asking your opinions on the changes and ways to manage the impacts. In February 2014 we will have a series of Bushcare Group Leader Forums to openly discuss issues and determine a way forward. This will be for Group Leaders only. This is your opportunity to have your say about how the program is supported and ways we can work effectively together. See diary dates for details.

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  3


BUSHCARE NEWS

National Tree Day 2013 T

his year we focused on repairing a remnant of Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest (STIF) which as you probably know is an endangered ecological community under NSW law, and if over one hectare it is critically endangered under federal law. There are only 297 hectares left of this plant community in Hornsby Shire, mostly on private property in the rural areas. STIF was once common throughout the Sydney from Hurstville in the south, Strathfield in the west, and north to Pennant Hills. What remains is found in fragmented and often weed infested patches with major edge disturbance issues. A few mature Turpentine (Syncarpia glomulifera) and Ironbark (Eucalyptus paniculata) trees were growing near the chosen site as well as some recently planted smaller ones, so we concentrated our plant selection on filling in the mid-storey and groundcover layers.

4  SPRING 2013

The site was prepared ahead of time by our Field Officer Sonny Armstrong, with help from the Inala volunteer team. It was on the edge of some very popular playing fields, so they attached red and white striped tape to star pickets around the edges to make the planting area really obvious. Sonny also did a lot of plant hole digging. Around forty visitors turned up to lend a hand on the day. It was heartening to see so many parents bringing their children along to give back to nature. They were very keen to plant, and we would have run out of stock if Ross hadn’t turned up with a few extra trays of plants from the Nursery. The Beecroft Cheltenham Junior Rugby Association were using the sports oval that day, and very kindly opened their canteen to us, so we could offer our workers a drink and a hot sandwich. To protect the plants we staked and bagged as many as we could. They were also given a good drink of water, as the ground was very dry. Sonny and Inala continue to look after the plants to increase their chances of success.


It was heartening to see so many parents bringing their children along to give back to nature.

Past news lett be vi ewed ers can in co on C lour ounc horn il’s w sby.n e b site sw.g ov.au /bush care hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  5


BUSHCARE NEWS

Caring for the Hawkesbury-Nepean estuary

Lynne S some larpringett and P ge Aga a ve on Sula Ellis (cent pectacl re) and e Island .

F

loating Landcare volunteers have participated in nine activity days caring for the HawkesburyNepean estuary since August last year. Rebecca Mooy, Hawkesbury-Nepean Catchment Management Authority Catchment Officer said the project has been a great success with weedy sites being managed in what are otherwise pristine bushland remnants in the Nationals Parks and some council sites in the estuary. “Floating Landcare is a great way for people to get directly involved in protecting these largely weed free remnants, see new sites and meet like-minded people. Volunteers get a free lunch and snacks and get to learn some new bush regeneration skills. We all work together at the floating landcare sites to manage the spread of weeds and help the bushland to recover,” said Rebecca.

Judy Jeffery, Hornsby Bushcare volunteer said Floating Landcare “encourages ordinary people to appreciate their bushland heritage.” Some of the locations that volunteers have visited include Milson’s Passage and Peats Bight in Muogamarra Nature Reserve, Long, Scotland and Spectacle Islands, Gentleman’s Halt. Sandbrook Inlet near Brooklyn and Hungry Beach, near West Head.

eing b g n i y o j ares ern a morning c d n a gL fte Floatinthe River taacle Island. on n Spec o

Judy Je ffe Weed frry removes Pamp as om Long Island N Grass and Cro fton ature R e s e r v e. 6  SPRING 2013

Floating Landcare is coordinated by the Hawkesbury-Nepean Catchment Management Authority in partnership with Hornsby, Gosford and Pittwater Councils and the local National Parks and Wildlife Service in the estuary. Hornsby Council will be hosting Floating Landcare sessions at Bar Island in dates are as follows. n n

Thursday 31 October 8.30am-2.30pm, and Thursday 28 November 8.30am-2.30pm

Please call Kaylene/Jo-Anne on 9847 6832 to book in and receive details to meet/pick up. If you are interested in joining us at Bar Island for a morning of Bushcare contact Donna Fitton on 9847 6976 or dfitton@hornsby.nsw.gov.au.

Grimm enjoy y d n e W d n a Barry Lees ride to Peats Bight. the boat


Floating Landcare is a great way for people to get directly involved in protecting these largely weed free remnants, see new sites and meet like-minded people.

llis la E ets u a P g tre) the n e (C ngst amo ana on t Lan Island. g Lon

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  7


BUSHCARE NEWS

Reading snake behaviour

species to watch out for

I

f you find yourself being chased by a snake, remember, if you can think at all, that their top speed is around 7.5 kmh – that’s a fast walking pace in open country. There is the small but vital matter of strike speed. This is temperature dependent (at 13ºC they are slow-ish, at 30ºC don’t blink). The strike zone can be 5-15 cm for a Death Adder or 1 metre plus for a Brown Snake. To be on the safe side leave all snakes at least 2 metres of space. Usually the best way to stop a snake from having a go at you is to stand still. Their eyesight is attuned to movement – movement to a snake signals predator or prey; either way, you’ll have their full attention! Snakes have a highly developed sense of smell, enhanced by flicking their forked tongue. However it is unlikely they can smell fear – another myth busted! So why are they going after you? Well it could be you look like the closest shelter. Snakes are very keen to stay out of the way of predators such as kookaburras, raptors and goannas, and with their limited eyesight they might see you as a rocky outcrop or a log, and head in your direction. Not chasing, just mistaken identity is all. Movement triggers a snake’s defensive response. Their first response is to flee, but if they feel cornered, they will try to defend themselves. Some Australian snakes have very impressive defensive displays, as anyone who has seen the menacing, tightly coiled S shape of an eastern brown will testify!

8  SPRING 2013

Snakes like to hang out in warm and dry places, especially over winter. Because they are able to absorb heat energy from their surroundings (sunshine, warm rocks, under tin etc) snakes have one tenth the food requirements of mammals. This explains their extraordinary ability to thrive in some of Australia’s harshest regions. What snake is that? Colour and patterns vary widely within species. Trying to identify snakes on looks alone is fraught with danger and many people suffer bites when they mistake venomous snakes for harmless ones. If it is during the day, down by the creek where the frogs are croaking, there is a good chance it is a Redbellied Black Snake. They are relatively common near urban areas, and one of the least aggressive of the venomous variety. They are reluctant to bite and often give what’s known as a ‘dry’ bite, whereby they fail to inject any venom. When they do inject their venom, however, the experience can be extremely painful and moderately toxic. And yes, they eat Brown Snakes. If it is in open grassy (mice) country – anywhere but forested lands really during the day then it could be a Brown Snake. Brown snakes are one of the most variable in colour and pattern of any snake species. The young have noticeably ring-patterned scales, which fade in adults to all manner of colour permutations. They are distinctly pin-headed. Brown snakes are perhaps Australia’s most dangerous snake: found in most Australian habitats including urban settings, they are extremely reactive,

move quickly over the ground, can rear up well over a metre and strike with great athleticism. Brown Snake venom is the second most toxic terrestrial snake venom known. Even their young are capable of delivering a fatal bite. There is no immediate pain or swelling associated with Brown Snake bite, and sometimes the only indicator of envenomation is the wound won’t stop bleeding. Nausea and dizziness may become apparent within an hour or so, and the effects can progress rapidly. Fortunately brown snake fangs are small – 2.8mm long on average – and produce one or two drops of venom per bite. Sure, one drop may be enough to kill an elephant, but the smaller the fangs, the greater likelihood they fail to penetrate – from the hundreds of brown snake bites that occur, on average only 15% result in serious life threatening envenomation. If it is a warm night down along the foreshore of the Hawkesbury river or its tributaries amongst the native vegetation, it could be a Death Adder on the move. In the early 19th century it was referred to as the Deaf Adder, as it seemed immune to disturbances and would lie hidden in the undergrowth, giving no warning of its presence. If accidentally touched or brushed over, the death adder gives a lighting fast reflexive strike. Its venom is the fourth most toxic venom known causing profound paralysis. Given its viper like appearance and propensity to bury itself down in the leaf litter, Death Adders can be mistaken for Blue Tongue Lizards.


What to do in case you’re bitten To reduce the chance of being bitten by a snake, wear loose trousers, thick socks, and leather shoes. If you do get bitten, stay still and as calm as possible to minimise the spread of venom through the lymph gland system. Bind the wound affected limb firmly and immobilise it as soon as possible, and send for help. While waiting for it to arrive, spare a kind thought for Eric Worrelll who championed the collection of venom for treating snake and spider bite. Things you should NOT do include: Do NOT attempt to kill the snake

er.

Death Add

Do NOT apply a tourniquet Do NOT suck, cut or wash the bite Do NOT apply chemicals or antiseptics Do NOT give medication or alcohol Do NOT let the victim walk around or be physically active Do NOT take off the compression bandage – it MUST be removed at the hospital. Treat all snake bites no matter how superficial they may appear as a serious medical emergency. Take no chances. For more information or help identifying a snake log on to www.whatsnakeisthat.com.au/ nsw/sydney.html

osser.

yRS b e k a n S n w n Bro

Easter

ard.

Liz Blue-tongued

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  9


BUSHCARE NEWS

Eastern Pygmy Possum walk n’ talk T

hreatened Species Day was commemorated with a presentation by Paul Burcher on studies he is undertaking on behalf of Hornsby Shire Council to increase the knowledge base of the Eastern Pygmy Possum (Cercartetus nanus). These tiny creatures (15 - 43 grams) were listed as vulnerable in NSW in 2001 and their status has not improved. They are found along the coast of south-eastern Australia, and inland as far as Dubbo, Parkes and Wagga Wagga. They are active, mostly nocturnal climbers with an almost bare, prehensile (capable of curling and gripping) tails, and big, forward-pointing ears. They inhabit a broad range of habitats but in most areas woodlands and heath appear to be preferred. They feed largely on nectar and pollen collected from banksias, eucalypts and bottlebrushes; and are important pollinators of heath plants such as banksias. They eat soft fruits and insects when flowers are less abundant.

Eastern Pygmy Possums appear to be mainly solitary, each individual using several nests in tree hollows, holes in the ground, abandoned bird-nests, or thickets of vegetation (eg. grass-tree skirts). Young can be born whenever food sources are available, with most births occurring between late spring and early autumn. During the cold months they go into torpor, with body curled, ears folded and internal temperature close to the surroundings. Paul talked about his research into the population of Eastern Pygmy Possums in the Cowan catchment heathland, and then led the group into the field to inspect nesting boxes set up to conduct his trials. There was nobody at home, but there is evidence that man-made nests, including the PVC

erley.

ossum

my P g y P n r e ast

imb K e c u r by B

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astern E h t i w cher Paul Bur ossum nesting box Pygmy P pipe with mesh lining style, were being occupied. Motion sensitive footage showed possums emerging from the boxes and foraging on Lambertia formosa (Mountain Devils) and Banksia spinulosa (Hairpin Banksia). If you are interested in learning more about this very photogenic creature, Ku-ring-gai Council are hosting a talk by Brad Law on Sunday 1 December. Details will be posted on the Ku-ring-gai website and wildthings.org.au. Hornsby Bushcare will host another walk n’ talk with Paul Burcher in early June next year, when the chances of finding Eastern Pygmy Possums at home will be very good.

Australian Association of Bush Regenerators Australian Association of Bush Regenerators (AABR) is a key non-government organisation promoting the study and practice of ecological restoration and fostering effective management of natural areas by qualified people. Membership of AABR is open to all people with an interest in ecological restoration and bush regeneration. If you would like to know more or apply for membership contact the secretary or look up the website www.aabr.org.au

10  SPRING 2013


Birdwatchers basics Here are a few tips on birdwatching techniques to get you started. Be warned: this is an addictive habit!

W

hat our eyes perceive and interpret can be very different to what is actually in front of us so when you do see a bird of interest try to concentrate on these attributes first: 1. Size: perhaps best compared to something you know well ie. is it magpie sized or wren sized?

Superb Fairy Wren. Birds in Backyards.

Wrens by Noel Rosten.

Red-browed Firetail by er. Ron Watts, bushcare volunte

Silvereye.

2. Silhouette: as in its shape either perched or in flight. Sometimes the apparent lighting may be working against you – so a silhouette may be all you have to look at. 3. Diagnostic features: plumage (feathers), leg length and colour, tail – its shape, size or patterns, the beak and is it calling or singing? 4. Habit or behaviour: of the bird 5. The habitat the bird is occupying: soaring high above, in undergrowth, the upper canopy or out on a water body.

6. Seasonality: Sydney is home to quite a few migrants at certain times of the year. With this point also comes time of day, many species are more active and easier to observe at dawn or dusk.

7. Follow the birdwatchers code: to ensure the welfare of the birds you are watching and the habitat they are in. Armed with these starters you’re also going to need a few tools to give you the edge on positively identifying that Superb Fairy-wren from a Variegated Fairy-wren. 1. Binoculars. A topic all of its own. Look for a pair that is relatively lightweight, lets in lots of light when there is little natural light available (dawn and dusk) and has relatively strong magnification – but not like a lunar telescope. A pair between 8 x 25 and 10 x 42 satisfies. The first number refers to the amount of magnification whilst the second is the diameter of the lens - the larger this figure the heavier the binoculars will be. Expect to pay $150 to $400 for anything half decent. 2. Field guides. There are many field guides on Australian birds: comprehensive ones, specialised books just on a group or a even a single species, ones with coloured plates, ones with photographs. The choice can be bewildering. Weight is also a consideration if you’re lugging it around all day. Choose one that suits you with adequate pictures and text descriptions.

The beauty of these is that they come with recorded calls for that extra helping hand to identify between a Striated Thornbill and a Brown Thornbill. They weigh a lot less than a book but rely on battery power. 3. A notebook. Indispensible. This is where you can write all the details we discussed above including a sketch of the bird in question. You can scribe lists for particular reserves, times of year for particular species and even your life list! And finally here are some great links to where you can find much more detailed information: http://www.birdsinbackyards.net/ A great site with details on birds and other bird related topics http://birdlife.org.au/ The premier bird conservation group in Australia http://www.cboc.org.au/ Cumberland Bird Observers’ Club for Sydney http://www.eremaea.com/BirdlineRecentSightings. aspx?Birdline=2 for reporting rare or unusual sightings in NSW. http://www.birdsinbackyards.net/Nest-Box-Plans to find bird boxes to build and place in your garden

With modern technology we now have bird apps too. hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  11


BUSHCARE NEWS

Nursery volunteers’ field trip O

n Wednesday, 24 July, 2013 a combined group of nursery volunteers who carry out their various duties on Wednesdays and Saturdays, enjoyed a visit to seven sites in Hornsby Shire where the “fruits of their labours” – native plants – had been utilised to great effect. The trip was organised by Nursery Co-ordinator, Ross Rapmund and special thanks from the volunteers go to him for organising such a good representative sample of the many sites throughout the Shire where native plants produced by the Nursery volunteers have been planted. First stop was the Tumpinyeri site within Normanhurst West Public School. Here revegetation began in April 2010 and upon completion in June 2013, some 1,320 plants have been installed. Tumpinyeri preserves a rare example of the area’s former extensive Blue Gum High Forest and is therefore an important sanctuary and genetic repository for the plants, animals and fungi of this critically endangered vegetation community. Our second stop was at the new Catchment Remediation Rate Bio-retention device installed in Spring 2012 near Apanie Place and Duneeba Drive, Westleigh. Here volunteers received a briefing from Council’s Manager – Bushland Operations, David Beharrell on how the system is designed and built and the important part plants play. In total some 5,000 plants have been installed here and in the surrounds. Our third stop was to look at progress being made on a property on Dural Downs Drive and the adjoining Transgrid managed property. This is a remnant of the Turpentine Ironbark Forest community containing nine canopy species including locally 12  SPRING 2013

significant Eucalyptus fibrosa (Broadleaved Ironbark). There are some 97 plant species in Mark Greaves’ patch. With successive grants over the past three years much as been achieved and 2,120 native plants have been utilised to-date. We then visited the Rural Sports Facility at Galston where 700 trees of 10 different species have been sown as an offset to the loss of Turpentine Ironbark Forest on Bayfield Road and a massive old Eucalyptus punctata (Grey Gum) which had been lost due to the need to create a turning lane and a passing lane into Mansfield Road. After returning to the Nursery for a quick lunch we were off again to visit our fifth site, Vimiera Park, Epping. Here we were able to see how a previously mown area had been segregated to protect large remnant trees. The previously mown area had contained a lot of natural ground layers that had persisted despite years of mowing. Here we saw the results of how planting tree, shrub (16 species) and further ground layers (15 species) – a total of 670 plants produced by the Nursery and planted on National Tree Day 2010 – had made a wonderful improvement to this site and further buffer to the adjoining bushcare site. Our sixth site was Lyne Road, Cheltenham Bio-remediation Basin where we saw the results of plantings both inside and outside of the biobasin. This demonstrated how the plants could be used to make the basin blend in with the natural surroundings whilst also contributing to stormwater treatment control. 2,440 plants have been used here. Our seventh site was off Magnolia Avenue, Epping to visit the “Habitat

sland dy Ram By San nteer r y volu Nurse

Havens” project down Magnolia Walkway, being established by the Ray Park Heritage Committee. In the Committee’s words “This is a successful revegetation site where over 3,100 native plant tubestock have been planted. This is a unique bushland reserve providing native birds, mammals and insects with habitat and a rich variety of food source throughout the seasons.” An important component of the achievements of this project has been the involvement of local school children in the planting tasks. What we saw were the results of a sustained effort which had commenced with initial clearing in March 2009 through to a last planting which had been done in July 2013 to “bulk up” the area planted by the schools. Overall the field trip was a great opportunity to see the results of our labours in the Council’s Bushland Nursery. The total number of native plants provided for these seven sites is 15,350. The trip gave nursery volunteers wonderful encouragement to continue their efforts to contribute native plants for so many significant purposes throughout the Hornsby Shire. Special thanks are due to Sonny Armstrong of Council’s Bushland team for his efforts in driving the bus to the various sites, to Ross Rapmund for his choice of sites and overall efficient planning of the day’s trip and to Council’s Leanne Johnston, Environmental Scientist – Bushcare who accompanied the group and had the unenviable task of keeping the honorary Nursery volunteer timekeeper on his mark to ensure that Ross’ precise timetable for the day was achieved.


and nursery Tumpinyeri’s Alan Blissett K volunteer Michael ing

Dural D

Habitat Havens site and the nursery volunt eers

owns, M

ark Gr

eaves L

andcare

site

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  13


BUSHCARE NEWS

Spring wildflowers walk W e were blessed with mild sunny weather for our annual Spring Wildflowers walk which winds through the upper reaches of the Lane Cove River catchment, passing through Council managed bushland and into the National Park.

In spite of the dry end to winter plants were putting on a great display. We made our way from the transitional soils (clay influence/ sandstone) near the ridge down into the protected sandstone gully, all the

As we came closer to the creek the mid storey closed in, and we noticed more ferns and moisture loving plants in the understorey. Further uphill there was a stark contrast between an area that had been subjected to a planned fire some three years ago with its now abundant wildflowers, and the unburnt thick vegetation on the other side of the track.

Goodbye from Bushcare volunteer...

As usual, we found a number of plants not on our list, and couldn’t find some that were. Although we follow the same track each year, we discover new plants each time. Sandra commented “It was a lovely morning. I thoroughly enjoyed the walk and the information on the plants.”

Thank you to Bushcare staff and fellow volunteers for all the help you gave me – not only with plants for our garden, but you taught me plenty about the bush and Bushcare. I realise that what I know now is only a tiny percentage of what I could learn if I applied myself, but am happy that I know how to remove asparagus fern and invasive grasses, and have some idea of the importance of Bushcare. I am also able to take better care of my own garden by planting new plants correctly to give them the best chance of survival.

One of our Herbarium Team, Noel Rosten was with us and sent in a few photos he took on the walk.

I will probably see you around Dangar Island. Life is interfering and I never seem to be able to come. Jo Karcz

14  SPRING 2013

s by n o t o Ph Roste Noel

while under the shelter of magnificent Blackbutts and Angophoras.

Dillwynia retorta.

.

Rainbow Lorikeet pair

Grevillea speciosa. Registration cards Since 2011, all Bushcare registration cards will be valid for five years. Unfortunately they only cover Bushcode workshop attendees from the beginning of that year. It is important to do the refresher Bushcode to brush up on your skills and keep your accreditation current.

Do we have your current email? Have you moved, changed jobs or just changed your email address? If so, please update your details with us. By choosing to view you get to save trees and you will also be one of the first people to view the latest newsletter!


Please note you need to book into most events, and numbers are limited. If you don’t book the event may be cancelled.

Birdwatchers breakfast

Previously we have spotted some interesting birds walking a short section of the Benowie Track (part of the Great North Walk). Hope to do the same this year. We’ll finish with a picnic brunch. Leader: Andy Burton/Lindy Williams 0419 680 054 Wear/ Suitable bushwalking bring: footwear and clothing, hat, water sunscreen, binoculars, field guide, camera. When? Sunday 27 October Time? 7.30am-10.30am Where? Crosslands Reserve, end of Somerville Rd, Hornsby Heights Meet: At end of the road near Benowie Track Book: 9424 0893 or 9424 0179. Numbers strictly limited! Level of Moderate, uneven difficulty: surfaces and couple of steep climbs.

Diary dates

Bushcode workshop

Introductory workshop for new and returning Bushcare volunteers. Lunch provided. Participants receive complimentary protective clothing and a native plant voucher. When? Saturday 9 November Time? 8.45am-3pm Where? Earthwise Cottage, 28 Britannia Street, Pennant Hills Book: 9847 6832 or bushland@ hornsby.nsw.gov.au

Bushcare christmas supper dance

Celebrate another great Bushcare year. This year we have having a bush dance, so remember to bring your partner. If you don’t want to bring your dancing shoes you will be welcome to sit and catch up with your old bushcare friends. Please note the change to the Christmas Party times are earlier than previously advertised. When? Saturday 30 November Time? 5pm-8pm Where? Galston Community Centre Book: 9847 6832 or bushland@ hornsby.nsw.gov.au

Bushcode

Essential for all Hornsby Shire Bushcare Volunteers.

Grasses and groundcovers workshop

Presented by Bill and Noela Jones/ Lindy Williams . When? Saturday 2 November Time? 2pm-4pm Where? Wallalong Crescent, West Pymble Meet? Outside 105 Wallalong Crescent Wear/ Sturdy footwear, bring: sunscreen, hat, water, field guides and lens if you have them. Refreshment and notes will be provided. Book: 9424 0893 or 9424 0179. Numbers strictly limited!

When? Saturday 15 February Time? 1pm-4pm Where? Earthwise Cottage, 28 Britannia Street, Pennant Hills OR When? Thursday 20 February Time? 10am – 1pm Where? Earthwise Cottage, 28 Britannia Street, Pennant Hills

When? Friday 7 March Time? 8.45am-3pm Where? Earthwise Cottage, 28 Britannia St, Pennant Hills Book: 9847 6362 bushcare@hornsby.nsw. gov.au

Group Leaders Forum

All Bushcare group leaders are invited to a special forum to talk about how the Bushcare program has changed over the years, particularly over the last 24 months. This is your opportunity to have your say and to discuss issues related to the program from the group leader perspective.

Native plant giveaway day

Bring along your rates notice and receive free local plants. For ratepayers from Beecroft, Carlingford, Castle Hill, Cheltenham, Epping, Eastwood, Glenhaven, Pennant Hills, West Pennant Hills and North Epping only. Conditions: n Please bring your current Hornsby Shire rates notice and ID n Strictly four plants (suburban areas) and six plants (rural areas) per household. n Limited stock may be available. When? Saturday 22 March Time? 1pm-3pm Where? Earthwise Cottage, 28 Britannia St, Pennant Hills Info: hornsby.nsw.gov.au/ nursery

Earth Hour

Switch off the lights at 8.30pm Saturday 29 March and show your support for a more sustainable planet. Together we have the power to make change happen. When? Time? Info:

Saturday 29 March 8.30pm-9.30pm www.wwf.org.au/earthhour

hornsby.nsw.gov.au/bushcare  15


BUSHCARE NEWS

What’s on for 2014 All the highly recommended photos for Our Beautiful Bushland 2013 Competition will be exhibited throughout 2014 at the Hornsby, Epping and Pennant Hills Library. For more details see first bushcare eNews in February 2014.

We have another exciting year of exhibitions, workshops and seminars.

Bushcare site tour – May 2014 Come and see some of our bushcare sites that have had a control burn in the last couple of years. See some of the changes to the vegetation.

Our environmental scientist – fire management Amelia Jones will talk about fire and bush regeneration, the criteria for ecological burns and how Hornsby Shire Council manages some of the sites.

A pygmy possum walk and talk.

nd Photo la h us B ul f i ut ea B ur O 2013. Competition Entries

This year Paul Burcher will take us out earlier in the year, late autumn, early winter to see if we can find some possums living in the possum boxes.

PLEASE CONTRIBUTE TO THIS NEWSLETTER You can send your stories or letters to the Editor in for the next edition by 1 JUNE 2014 Fax: 9847 6362 Mail: PO Box 37, Hornsby 1630 or Email: bushcare@hornsby.nsw.gov.au This newsletter has been compiled by the Natural Resources Branch and Bushcare volunteers.

THE BUSHLAND SHIRE

Late August Emeritus Professor Harry Recher will talk about local birds and their habitats and tie that to bush regeneration. Focussing on the local scene in a national context especially considering how birds respond to landcare style revegetation. There will be time for questions/discussion.

Wildflower walk – late winter 2014 We will have another wildflower walk at Pennant Hills to see the lovely flush of flowers that happens. The walk will be of moderate difficulty and you will need to wear sturdy shoes, bring water bottle, camera, hat and your field guides. We would love to add to our current species list. If you have an idea for a Bushcare workshop or seminar please contact council’s Environmental Scientists – Bushcare on 9847 6362 or bushcare@hornsby.nsw.gov.au

Almos

t ever y week there is guided walk t hrough part of a the Ho r n s by Shir bushla e nd. Br librarie ochure s and s a t Counc il offic es. a free

POSTAGE PAID Hornsby NSW AUST 1630

If not claimed within 7 days please return to PO Box 37 Hornsby NSW 1630

Hornsby Shire Bushcare Newsletter | SPRING 2013


Bushcare News - Spring 2013