Heathmont Bushcare’s goat project continues to be an enormous success. Anyone who has walked past the goat enclosure recently (and managed to push their way through the admiring throngs of passers-by to actually see the goats!), will have noticed a huge improvement to the area in only two weeks. The goats have done a wonderful job of chomping their way through kikuyu grass, non-indigenous wattle species, pittosporums, blackberries and English ivy. All this, whilst leaving the indigenous grasses and other indigenous vegetation alone! It won’t be long before the process of re-planting the area with indigenous species plants can begin.
The only minor downside was an incident which occurred last week when someone, or people, dismantled part of the fencing, opened up the goat enclosure, and then led the goats out on to the nearby ovals. However, thanks to help of some locals, they were quickly rounded up, they were shepherded safely back into the enclose, the fence panels were moved back into place and the fixings re-attached. Thanks to those who helped out.
The next phase of the plan is that the goats will be spend some time away from this enclosure which will give the weedy vegetation some time to re-grow, and then the goats will be brought back. In this way, the weeds will never get time to grow seed and, as any re-growth is chewed away, the plants will lose their vigour and die.
In the meantime, please feel free to drop by the goat enclosure and say a big hello to our hard working environmentalists!
The goats have caused quite a sensation in their new, temporary home, along the Belgrave railway line close to HE Parker. They are already making a difference to the environment by chomping their way through the weeds at a great rate. Thanks to Gwyn Davies for these photos.
Got any great goat photos, or photos of the local environment that would look good on our website? If so, email them to email@example.com
Many thanks to all the wonderful volunteers who turned out to help erect the fencing for the goats this morning. They are happily installed in their new environment, and already making their presence felt on the weeds. Apparently they love Cootamundra Wattle and pampas grass! If you weren’t able to make the working bee this morning, please do pop down and visit the goats which you will find enclosed along the Belgrave railway line at HE Parker Reserve. There are 7 of them, so it would be great if everyone could keep an eye on them and make sure they are OK.
If you see anything concerning, please contact Roger Lord (Maroondah City Council) on 0429 189 583, or Colin Arnold (GrazeAway) on 0448 222 248.
Finally, please mark the date of our next working bee: Sunday 7th March at Uambi.
Please see below for an email directed to Heathmont Bushcare. If anyone has an interest in the matter and would like to contact Alex, I have included his contact details below.
Hello, I am writing to gauge the opinion of Heathmont Bushcare of the proposed Heathmont multi-level car park. I have a number of concerns regarding the proposal, namely: – a multi-level carpark was never part of the Heathmont village master plan, which was approved with community consultation- a multi-level construction in such a prominent location would have significant visual impact, and detract from the village style character of Heathmont- the requirement for the removal of a number of established, native trees on the site which are an extension of the FC Rodgers reserve (the home of many rare native species of plants).- traffic flow at the Campbell street/Canterbury road intersection, which is problematic already.- the purchase of the land by council in early 2020 to facilitate the development, to the tune of >$4m, indicating that the development is a ‘done deal’ already. Another resident and I are putting together a campaign to request adequate community consultation. I have (just tonight) started an online petition. We are keen to hear your feedback and whether you’d be willing to support this campaign.
Hope everyone has had an enjoyable festive season and looking forward to a COVID restriction free 2021!
Following our pre Xmas gathering at Uambi and Colin Arnold’s (from GrazeAway) inspiring talk regarding how goats can help manage our bushland remnants, it is with great anticipation that we can commence this exciting project along the Heathmont Railway Line. The project will focus on the railway reserve land and non-fenced areas between The Greenway and Armstrong Road.
Our first working bee will be about setting the fence enclosure along the railway line between The Greenway and Armstrong Road; and releasing the goats (under Colin’s direction)!
Colin will be supplying the temporary fence panels (and goats).
As there is a bit of work here it would be much appreciated if some volunteers could turn-up earlier – say 9.00AM – to help deposit the fence panels along the railway line reserve so they can be easily setup after 10.00 – when hopefully we will have a few more to help. Also it would be very helpful if a few can bring a portable drill – so we quickly screw the panels together (screw bits will be supplied).
Dear friends of, and volunteers with, Heathmont Bushcare,
The year has been a very disrupted one and we haven’t been able to carry out many of the activities we usually would. However, we are hoping that usual working bees will resume on the 1st weekend in February. In the meantime, thank you to everyone who has continued to care for our local environment in 2020, and a very happy, safe and relaxing Christmas to you all.
Please take a moment to view the video celebrating environmental volunteering in 2020 – see below.
With the welcome easing of restrictions, we are hoping to hold a small gathering at Uambi on Sunday 6th November. We are also hoping to have a briefing from Colin Arnold about an exciting new project being organised by Roger Lord.
That’s right! Uambi is once again open to the public.
A considerable amount of work has been done to clear the paths of fallen trees and to fell trees that were leaning dangerously across the paths. Many thanks to Ben from the Trust for Nature for his work in organising the tree fellers to complete their work so promptly.
We’d love to see out (obeying social distancing instructions of course) and enjoying the wonderful natural environment of Uambi.
During the recent storm, Uambi suffered considerable damage in the form of fallen trees.
Much work has already been carried out to clear paths. However, there are still several trees leaning dangerously across the paths. Contractors have been hired to fell these trees, and this work will be done as soon as they are available to do it. (Suddenly, they are very busy!)
We hope to have Uambi open again by next weekend (12th Sept).
Thank you for your understanding – we are doing all we can to open Uambi as soon as possible.
Heathmont’s remaining sugar gilders need help, and you can be part of the solution. This project invites residents to become stewards for wild life.
It wasn’t that long ago Sugar Gliders were a common sight in Heathmont, emerging at dusk and flying past you to their supper. With wildlife corridors critical for our native fauna to survive and thrive, yet due to urban pressures many are disappearing unnoticed.
Sugar gliders are a keystones species that will help us map remaining wildlife corridors. This project, spearheaded by First Friends of Dandenong Creek, and supported by Maroondah Council and Abzeco, records glider occupancy in specially designed, strategically placed nesting boxes. The boxes will be installed in reserves, schools and gardens. Trained experts will check their occupancy regularly and document the findings. Findings will inform a corridor strategy for the Heathmont area that First Friends of Dandenong Creek and Maroondah Council can use to protect, maintain and enhance our corridors. With increasing urban development, the unseen corridors they live and travel in are disappearing.
Residents can join a monitoring group or host a ‘nest box’ tree home for gliders in their garden. There are 100 new nest boxes to be placed. Monitors will connect with like-minded others in a biannual audit (depending upon COVID restrictions) of gliders in boxes. Furthermore, they will know that their findings will help inform a dynamic corridor development strategy.
If you are interested in supporting this work and can host a nest box in your garden or school, then please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please note, you must fall within the Sugar Glider survey zone, which is the area bordered by Canterbury Road, Heathmont Road, Dandenong Creek and Wantirna Road.
Wish to thank Hon. Michael Sukkar MP for supporting our application to the Federal Government’s Communities Environment Program
First Friends of Dandenong Creek
Many thanks to Nalini Scarfe for permission to use the gorgeous photos of sugar gliders seen on this page.
Regrettably, due to the ongoing Covid 19 situation in Victoria, there will be no Bushcare working bee this Sunday 5th July. We hope that by September we can all meet again at Uambi.
In the meantime, stay well and perhaps take the opportunity to visit some of the bushland in Maroondah. I attach a link to Maroondah Council’s interactive map of walking trails and bushland in Maroondah.