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G'Day Landcarers,
 
It has been a busy start to the year and Landcare volunteers across the Far South Coast have been relishing the opportunities to get together again to undertake working bees and community events. I have greatly enjoyed travelling around and catching-up with people face to face and seeing the positive impacts that their projects are having for local wildlife and biodiversity. It is such a welcome respite from the era of zoom calls and webinars of previous two years.

Here at the FSCLA, we have just moved office and are no longer at the Plumb Motors Building in Auckland St, Bega. You can now find us in the tranquil settings of the Old Bega Hospital. It is a lot quieter being out of town and we encourage you to drop in and see us! Please give Jean or I a call beforehand to check that we will be there. My office days are Thursday and Friday. 

In my role at the Far South Coast Landcare Association I have picked up a new hat and have taken over the coordination of the Far South Conservation Management Network (or CMN). The CMN has a great webpage full of interesting resources relating to managing native vegetation and supporting biodiversity, including a comprehensive plant database compiled by local botanist Jackie Miles that covers all the local native and weed species you are likely to find in our area. The network holds several events a year and we always welcome new members. 

Do you know an individual who has demonstrated enormous commitment to environmental or sustainable agriculture through volunteering with Landcare? 

Nominations are still open for the Bob Hawke Landcare Award. They close soon, so get in quick to nominate that person who goes above and beyond in their Landcare work. 

In this edition of the newsletter you can read about what many of our groups have been up to. You will also find information on some upcoming events and grant funding opportunities currently open. 

 Warm greetings, Jess


Contact FSCLA:

Jess Bettanin
Local Landcare Coordinator
Far South Coast Landcare Association 


Ph: 0477 063 920 
coordinator@fscla.org.au
Old Bega Hospital (southside)
3 Corkhill Place Bega


(I work Wed, Thurs and Fri)

BVSC weeds workshop
On a sunny morning in March, Biosecurity officers Jamie Dixon-Keay and Kylie Ryan from Bega Valley Shire Council led a workshop for volunteers from the Tura Mirador and Merimbula Landcare groups along the Merimbula Boardwalk reserve.
📷: BVSC's Jamie Dixon-Keay and Kylie Ryan demonstrate using Vigilant on weedy ginger
As part of the workshop, the council officers demonstrated best practice weed control methods for a range of local weed species, including tips for hand pulling and mechanical weeding and for safe, minimal impact chemical use. Jamie also took us to a revegetation site along the boardwalk that he worked on over 10 years ago. It was so encouraging to see the mature and diverse native vegetation flourishing and outcompeting the previously dominant weeds.
 
📷: Volunteers Celia, Rob and Helen watch on as the biosecurity officers demonstrate manual control techniques for Agapanthus
 
The BVSC biosecurity team are keen to support volunteer groups and provide advice around control techniques or plant identification. If you think your group could benefit from a weeds workshop with Council please get in touch with me.
 
Ecocrew at Camel Rock - by Ecocrew Graduates Christie Fanning & Stacy Wright
The Campbell Page Ecocrew have been working to care for the coastal bushland at Camel Rock since October 2021, under the guidance on Beauty Point Bushcare volunteer Rebecca Rudd. This beautiful and highly popular tourist location has become one of the main sites that the crew has worked at and has allowed for the opportunity for the trainees to build skills across the whole cycle of a bush regeneration project.

📷: Ecocrew Graduates Christie Fanning and Stacy Wright
The crew have returned to work at the Camel Rock site many times and began by hand-weeding and removal of weedy seed-heads. The main target weed species that the crew have been working to control include Turkey Rhubarb, Cape Ivy, Lantana, Mothvine and Kikuyu. The crew removed the weedy vines to uncover the native vegetation being smothered by them and allow species such as Coastal Banksia, Seaberry Saltbush and Lomandras to grow more vigorously.

Once the crew members completed their chem-cert accreditation, they had the chance to further develop their skills and experience in chemical weed control at the site and they undertook selective spraying to manage the Kikuyu and Turkey Rhubarb. This helped to prepare the site before revegetation plantings. With support of the Bega Valley Shire Council environment team, the crew planted 100 native seedlings to help revegetate the previously weed infested areas. The plants have responded well to the wet conditions over summer and our growing well.

The ecocrew trainees continue to return to Camel Rock regularly to undertake follow-up weed control. The current group of trainees graduate from the program in May and applications are now open for a new round of trainees that are set to begin in June. The next intake of trainees will build on the great work that this group have achieved at Camel Rock. Special thanks goes to Rebecca Rudd for generously volunteering her time and sharing her amazing experience and knowledge of bush regeneration with the crew.


📷: Rebecca and the Ecocrew remove Cape Ivy to allow the native vegetation to thrive

Candelo and District Landcare Community Day
By Community Coordinator Philippa Street

📷: Uncle Graham Moore and Candelo Landcare's Richard Barcham address the crowd
I am always a bit nervous undertaking a community planting event and this recent one held in Candelo was very ambitious, it was either going to be a big success or a terrible disaster. The weather had been against us for several weeks and we were behind schedule preparing the site but Paddy Farrell and Glen Brotherton pulled out all stops to get the work done. During the final week there was a problem getting mulch but thanks to Ed Crothers from BVSC it arrived just in time and was shifted into position the day before. At the last minute the main guest speaker phoned in sick and may have come down with COVID-19. What more could go wrong!
 
The invitations and posters were up, children's activities planned and a special treat - a weaving workshop with renowned Yuin artist Deidre Martin  would be take place in the Town Hall Cafe come-what-may weatherwise. 450 plants were on their way thanks to Donovan Adcock from Bush Connect and Candelo Public School's P&C was catering for 40-50, we just had to hope for the best.
 

With the help of Jess and Jean and the FSCLA marquee we had most contingencies covered. 
The day arrived and it was a beautiful sunny day, our guest speaker was coming. Hooray!
 
Candelo Creek divides and unites the community of Candelo. Many people are uncomfortable with the way the creek has changed since their childhood, or they think the Phragmites and cumbungi reeds that have colonised the sand bed are weeds, the eucalypts a fire hazard and the snakes just plain scary.  There are others, the dog walkers, some adventurous children and of coarse members of our Landcare Group who venture beyond the manicured parklands to the edge of the water and are delighted by the way the creek is transforming. After each flood new pools and beaches emerge, birds arrive to build nests in the summer reed beds. The sand sheet it shifting through the river system and the natural processes are re-establishing.
 
We chose the community planting site very carefully; it is very prominent and would be noticed!  it's close to the main hub of the parklands where residents gather for BBQs and children's birthday parties. And what a bonus the most recent flood kindly shifted some sand to form a lovely sandy beach not far from the children's playground. Which has made access to the water's edge safe and attractive.

📷: Members of Candelo Community enjoying a beautiful morning for planting
The generous grant that NSW Local Land Services recently gave to Candelo Landcare has given us the opportunity to employ a contractor to tackle some overwhelming weed problems and allowed us to undertake this community event. We are very thankful for Shannon Brennan NSW LLS and everyone who was involved, especially the local community who got in and helped plant and mulch this site - an impressive effort! There were 60 participants in the end and plenty of food. It rained the next day for an added bonus.

Seed Collection Training at Panboola
After having to postpone twice due to very wet conditions (in December and again in February), a date was set for native seed collection training for Landcare volunteers, third time lucky! All fingers were crossed and when the day rolled around we were delighted to see blue skies and sunshine. 
The FSCLA Seed Bank officers Merryn Carey and Ian Cunliffe ran two fun and informative sessions at beautiful Panboola wetlands. Landcare volunteers from Panboola, Tura Mirador, Merimbula Lake and Towamba Valley Landcare groups got a hands-on chance to learn the fundamentals of collecting seed from local provenance native plants to be grown up and used in their revegetation projects.
We hope to follow up with another seed collection workshop for Landcare groups in the north of the shire and some propogation sessions. This workshop was supported by a Landcare Australia through a Landcare Led Bushfire Recovery Grant.
Thanks to Merryn and Ian, to Michelle Richmond and Panboola for hosting us, and to all the volunteers who came along. 🌱

Bermagui Dunecare - An Update - by Volunteer Coordinator Karen Joynes
Bermagui Dunecare (BDC) reformed in 2002, and the first few years were spent walking local beaches removing sea spurge. We also spread the rust for bridal creeper. We made little progress in the sea spurge infestation until our member Stuart Cameron instigated the multi-agency Coastal Weeds Project. With the crew from five local Aboriginal Land Councils walking and weeding every Far South Coast beach, BDC was freed to do other things. We started with a revegetation project at Baraoot Beach car park, and then moved on the Cuttagee Point in 2011.

Stuart Cameron wrote a plan of Management for Cuttagee Point which broke the reserve into zones and guides the work of the volunteers. Under this plan, we have planted 1144 plants over 25 species in “Zone 7". We’ve had grants from Caring for Country and from BVSC Environment Fund. We’ve had a great deal of assistance from Landcare, BVSC and the old Far South Coast Catchment Management Authority, as well as advice from NPWS. Many of the plants have been grown from seed or cutting, or from roadside plants being dug up and potted, with permission from BVSC and NPWS.

📷: Bermagui Dunecare volunteers back in 2012  - ten years on and still going strong!

There is still work to be done at Cuttagee Point, notably in Zone 2, with on-going degradation of the headland from off road vehicles, but planting in Zone 7 is complete. Plants such as eucalypts and bankias are self seeding, and the plants are growing sufficiently high enough to provide a canopy. Weeds are also an on-going problem, but with the increasing age of members, BDC is hoping BVSC, as managers of the Crown Land Reserve, will take on this responsibility.

📷: BDC vollies at one of their many revegetation planting working bees
 
What's On at The Crossing? by Dean Turner, Project Director and FSCLA Committee Member
Weekend Landcare Adventures for Year 6-9
The Crossing Land Education Trust provides the following subsidised weekend programs in 2022 for local young people with support from the Far South Coast Landcare Association:
- Yr 6/7 Landcare Adventure 5pm Friday 2 to 1pm Sunday 4 December
- Yr 8/9 Landcare Wild Adventure 5pm Friday 3 June to 1pm Sunday 5 June.
Both weekend programs are great opportunities to meet like minded students from other schools in the region while learning more about the natural environment on a bike, hike, and paddle adventure, with a night in a train carriage bunkhouse.  The Wild program for older students also includes a remote tent camp night. Full scholarship places are available to fire affected students thanks to additional support from St Vinnies and The Mumbulla Foundation.
Senior Secondary/Early Tertiary Fire Preparation Leadership program
(July School Holidays)
Senior Secondary and early Tertiary students are also invited to join a special Fire Preparedness Leadership program with The Crossing in the July school holidays from 10am Tuesday 5 July to 1pm Thursday 7 July.  This program looks at fire recovery and the many ways the Crossing prepares for fire.  The program also includes planting of temperate rainforest trees to help make a gully area moister and more fire retardant.  
The Crossing Land Education Trust has been a Landcare Group with the Far South Coast Landcare Association for over 15 years and young people have helped plant over 20000 trees along the upper Bermagui River and Coolagolite Creek in that time. To book any of these programs go to https://www.thecrossingland.org.au/youth-camps/ and send Josh an email to receive a full sponsorship booking code if you are a fire affected family josh@thecrossingland.org.au

Koala Action Network Update by Chris Allen 
The Koala Action Network (KAN) is a community-based group founded in 2019 and auspiced by the Far South Coast Landcare Association. It aims to facilitate inclusive & collaborative leadership and actions for the care of local koalas and their habitat.
 

📷: KAN founding member Chris Allen (photo by Vanessa Milton, ABC Southeast)
Since its founding KAN has established a community-based network of people with generally high level of experience in nature conservation, a Facebook page and website. It has organised and facilitated workshops, managed koala browse species and rainforest planting projects, supported koala surveys and monitoring. particularly this undertaken in areas burnt in the 2019-20 Black Summer fires and those adjacent.

Most importantly KAN supports the Cultural Burning and koala research work being undertaken by the Indigenous Firesticks Alliance Cultural Burning project in the Biamanga, Murrah landscape, which focuses on improving the health of koala country. To learn more about the important work that Yuin Traditional Owners are doing to protect the Koalas of the Far South Coast, click the image below to read recent article by ABC journalist Vanessa Milton. Vanessa has also produced an excellent Podcast episode for ABC Radio National Earshot program called: Shifting Cultures | Healing with fire on koala country.

📷: Traditional knowledge holder Warren Foster is a cultural advisor to the burning program at Biamanga.(ABC South East NSW: Vanessa Milton)

Free Eucalypt ID workshops in June
South East Local Land Services are offering two FREE eucalyptus identification workshops in June 2022. Rural landowners and interested community group members are invited to attend a workshop on how to identify common Eucalyptus species. The day will begin with an introductory session and slide show by local botanist Jackie Miles, followed by two field trips. You will learn the range of diagnostic features that help to identify each Eucalyptus species and see the intrinsic link of where they prefer to grow depending on soil type and climate.
Moruya Workshop
When: 21st June 2022
Time: 10am-2pm
Where: Moruya RSL Hall, 11 Page St, Moruya
Bega Workshop
When: 29th June 2022
Time: 10am-2pm
Where: Bega Valley Civic Centre, Zingel Place, Bega
Places are limited so click HERE to register your interest
Enquiries about the Eucalyptus identification workshops can be directed to:
• Moruya - Sonia Bazzacco sonia.bazzacco@lls.nsw.gov.au
• Bega - Leanna Moerkerken leanna.moerkerken@lls.nsw.gov.au
 
Grants: 
Landcare Riparian Restoration grant 
Grants of up to $50,000 are available per incorporated Landcare or natural resource management group to carry out restoration works on riparian zones damaged by drought, floods or bushfires over the past five years. Joint submissions between multiple groups will also be considered up to a total value of $200,000. 
The Landcare Riparian Restoration Grants program is funded through the NSW Government’s $200 million Regional Recovery Package and is being administered through Local Land Services. 
To learn more click HERE. Applications close at 5pm, Friday, 3 June 2022. 

 
FRRRStrengthening Rural Communities
Foundation for Rural and Regional Renewal, or FRRR for short is a not-for-profit organisation, who connect common purposes and funding from government, business and philanthropy with the genuine local needs of rural people and places.

The Strengthening Rural Communities (SRC) program aims to give the thousands of small remote, rural and regional communities across Australia an opportunity to access funding to support broad community needs. 

Three funding streams are available:

  1. Rebuilding Regional Communities (RRC): two tiers – grants up to $10,000 and grants up to $50,000 to respond to ongoing impacts and recovery from the COVID pandemic;
  2. Bushfire Recovery: grants up to $25,000 for 2019/20 bushfire recovery; and
  3. Small & Vital: grants up to $10,000 for broad initiatives that strengthen local people, places, and climate solutions with a preference for smaller communities (populations under 15,000).

Grants are available for a broad range of grassroots, community-led initiatives that directly and clearly benefit local communities. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and assessed quarterly.

NAB Foundation Community Grants
NAB Foundation Community Grants fund local projects that help communities prepare for natural disasters, support long-term recovery and build resilience against future disasters. 

Grants of up to $10,000 are available for community-led projects that do one or more of the following:

  • Readiness: help communities (people, environments, infrastructure) prepare for natural disasters
  • Recovery: help communities, landscapes and fauna rebuild and rehabilitate after natural disasters
  • Future-proofing: reduce the risk of future natural disasters by cutting a community’s carbon emissions.
Copyright © 2021 Far South Coast Landcare Association, All rights reserved.
 
​I wish to acknowledge the Traditional Carers of this land on which we live and work: the Yuin people and their Elders past, present and future. I acknowledge and respect their continuing culture, connection to and care for country and its creatures on the Far South Coast.

My mailing address is: coordinator@fscla.org.au

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Far South Coast Landcare · 69-71 · Auckland Street · Bega, Nsw 2550 · Australia

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