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By the Community      For the Community

March 2019  Newsletter. Issue 138
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Inside
the Landcare SJ Office 

Presentation to Council

At the end of February, Kristy and Francis presented our report of "10 Years of NRM success in Serpentine-Jarrahdale" to the Shire of Serpentine-Jarrahdale at the Councillors' Policy Concept Forum. It was an excellent platform to highlight the contribution that Landcare SJ has made in protecting and rehabilitating ecological communities within the region over the past 10 years. This presentation was part of the State NRM Program's 2015 Community Capability Grant round, which allowed Landcare SJ to gather project data over the past 10 years, and reached its completion in December 2018. See Landcare News below for more details. 



Upcoming Events

Serpentine Jarrahdale 
Food & Farm
Festival 


5th of May, 2019 

Save the date! We'll definitely be there!

The Great Cocky Count 
April 7 , 2019

The Great Cocky Count originally started as a survey method for Carnaby’s Black-Cockatoos, and focussed just on the roost sites around the Perth Metropolitan area, but over recent years has expanded to include Forest Red-tailed Cockatoos as well as sites across the southwest. 2019 will be the tenth consecutive Great Cocky Count. Previous Great Cocky Count reports can be found on the Publications and Forms page. See the FAQ sheet below for more information.
The Great Cocky Count (GCC) is on Sunday April 7 at sunset (approximately 5.30-6.30pm in Perth). Please be aware registrations close 3 weeks prior to the GCC
(Sunday 17 March).

Contact Birdlife Australia:
Great Cocky Count Coordinator, BirdLife Australia
Peregrine House, 167 Perry Lakes Drive, Floreat, WA 6014
greatcockycount@birdlife.org.au
T 9287 2251


Click here to register now!

National Wildflower Conference in Albany, Western Australia

29th September - 4th October 2019 

Western Australia is famous for its wildflowers. Gardeners in Australia and many overseas strive to grow the beautiful kangaroo paws, boronias, hakeas and banksias endemic to Western Australia, especially to the South West of the State.

The South West boasts incredibly rich and diverse flora, most of which are found nowhere else on Earth. The region is home to more than 5,000 plant species and is an internationally recognised ‘biodiversity hotspot’. It is home to some of the rarest orchids & carnivorous plants, trees & mountain bells.

The South West has a ‘Mediterranean’ climate, with cool, wet winters and warm to hot and dry summers, and its flora has adapted to both drought and fire.

Species endemic to the region include the ancient Kingia (Kingia australis) and the glorious Royal Hakea (Hakea victoria). Huge Karri trees (Eucalyptus diversicolor) grow up 90 metres in the wettest areas, and the Albany Pitcher Plant (Cephalotus follicularis) hides away in dense vegetation on the banks of streams and swamps.

In 2019 the Australian Native Plants Society (Australia) will hold its national conference in Albany, on the south west coast of Western Australia. Albany is arguably one of the world’s most beautiful and diverse locations, renowned for its pristine coastline, myriad beaches and national parks, as well as its rich history.

Albany is the traditional home of the Minang Noongar people. It is located 420 kilometres south east of Perth and has a population of around 38,000 people.

The Conference will be hosted by the Wildflower Society of Western Australia. Spring is the main flowering period for our wildflowers, and the Conference will make the most of the peak flowering time.

The Albany Wildflower Show, with over 500 wildflower specimens on display, will be held in the week leading up to the Conference so that delegates can visit on the Friday or Saturday before the Conference begins.

In addition to an exciting program of speakers, the Conference includes half day tours around Albany on Sunday 29th followed by a Welcome Cocktail Party. The first full day of the conference is a choice of three full day excursions to enjoy the beautiful mountains or coast around Albany. There is an opportunity to take another of these options on day 3 of the conference.

There are also pre and post conference tours to explore Western Australia’s’ wildflower regions:

1. Kwongan and Woodland Tour - Wildflowers of northern heaths and inland woodlands

2. Granites and Lowlands Tour - Forests of the Darling Scarp and central Wheatbelt woodlands

3. Heathlands and Barrens Tour - Hidden gems between Fitzgerald and Cape LeGrand National Park

4. Coasts and Forests Tour- South West coastal forests and views

This is a great opportunity to learn more about Western Australia’s wildflowers. Find out more at www.bloomingbiodiversity.com.au


Guess What I Am?


 

For your chance to win an Australian Native Nursery gift voucher valued at $20 

Do you know what species I am?
 
Be the first person to Email my scientific name to Reece Jerrett at Landcare SJ and you'll receive an Australian Native Nursery gift voucher valued at $20!

Email:
reece@landcaresj.com.au



Your Local Environment 

War On Feral Pigs 

Landcare SJ Project Report March 2019


Landholders in Keysbrook have declared war on feral pigs over spring and summer, with a family group of 1 boar, 3 sows and 21 piglets successfully caught in November 2018. Since then, another group has been trapped, thanks to neighbours pooling their skills and knowledge, and utilising the expertise of others.

It began with a chance meeting in February 2018 with Andrew Lockey from WA Feral Animal Management, who was contracted by the Peel-Harvey Catchment Council to trap pigs in the region.

Andy’s method was to get to know the tracks and camps of the pigs, by installing a network of motion-activated cameras. A ‘free feed’ station was set up at an identified camp, along with more cameras. This gathered data about pig numbers, feeding times, and identified individuals and family groups.

Mesh panels that would make up the trap were installed gradually so as not to alarm the pigs, until it was fully constructed, including a remotely activated gate. The trap itself was linked to a live stream camera, which allowed it to be viewed in real time on a phone or computer, and the gate could be closed remotely once all the pigs were inside the trap. A few escapees can result in a new family group, with 2.5 litters per year and 10 piglets per litter!

Funding from the Landcare SJ through the State NRM Program Community Grants allowed the group of landholders to build their own trap and apply Andy’s methodology to continue the program, with the addition of a drone to follow trails through inaccessible areas. As a result, another group of 25 pigs were trapped and culled.

A Keysbrook landholder believes that the problem of feral pig mobs is proliferated by the illegal hunting of them. “There are social issues of hunters cutting fences, trespassing on private property and behaving threateningly towards farmers.

There are also cruelty issues around the disposal of feral animals, if wounded pigs are dying in pain, and hunting dogs can be gored by the bigger boars. This trapping method is a humane way of controlling the feral pig population, as there are no injured animals or members of a group left behind”, said Mr Elliott.

Feral pigs have a large impact on the natural and agricultural environment. There is physical damage to crops, and predation on lambs and calves. Pigs do a lot of digging, which degrades bushland and spreads weeds and disease, including Phytophthora dieback. Pigs can also carry diseases that affect domestic animals and humans.

Although a significant impact on the local pig population, the recent efforts in Keysbrook represents 1 out 1,000,000 of the total feral pig population, which is estimated at 25,000,000 Australia wide.

The colourful Pest!

The rainbow lorikeet (Trichoglossus haematodus), a declared pest, was introduced into WA in the 1960’s. An original population of fewer than 10 birds quickly grew and now pose an extreme threat to the West Australian agricultural sector.

Rainbow lorikeets cause significant damage to grape and fruit crops, compete with native animals for shelter and food, damage backyard gardens and carry diseases which pose a risk to both native and captive parrots. In a recent Examiner newspaper article, Louie Gianatti from the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale reported that their commercial orchard can lose up to 5 -10% of their crop at any one time due to rainbow lorikeets. For these reasons, the rainbow lorikeet is on the radar of the Peel Harvey Biosecurity Group. The Group is committed to preventing the spread of rainbow lorikeets further south with reports from the local government areas of Murray, Waroona, Harvey and Mandurah acted on by the Department.

 

The community can report rainbow lorikeet sightings to the Pest and Diseases Information Service (PaDIS) via phone 9368 3080 or email padis@dpird.wa.gov.au. Reports should include the GPS coordinates of known feeding and roosting sites, a picture of the birds for identification purposes and any impacts from their presence.

 

Where assistance is not provided by the Department (e.g. in the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale) there are several management options for landholders to decrease the impact of rainbow lorikeets.

* Anti-bird netting can be used to temporarily or permanently enclose crops. They are available from a number of specialist companies as well as rural and hardware suppliers.

* Scare devices (for example, bio-acoustic sounds, laser lights, or fire hoses) can be used at feeding, loafing and roosting sites to scare away birds. To be effective they must be used in combination and constantly rotated.

* Shooting with a licensed firearm, used in accordance with the Firearms Act 1973.

 

Some management options are illegal without a license from the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA). Management options that require a licence include live trapping, the use of mist nets, and translocation.

Using poison to control pest birds is illegal under DBCA and animal welfare legislation and any euthanasia of trapped rainbow lorikeets must be done by experienced operators.

 

Fight the Bite!

With the most common breeding grounds for mozzies in residential backyards, the stalls will increase your awareness, knowledge and understanding of the health risks mosquitoes pose, and offer tips in protecting yourself and your family from mosquito-borne illness. Tips that residents can utilise
to help reduce mozzie numbers are: 

Empty stagnant water.
Keep swimming pools well chlorinated, filtered and free of dead leaves
Ensure gutters do not hold water.

For more information on how to beat the mosquitoes this year please have a look at Fight the Bite WA Health Campaign

 

(Photo by City of Upper Arlington)



Landcare News 

10 Years of NRM success in Serpentine-Jarrahdale

This project was funded through the State NRM Program's 2015 Community Capability Grant round.
 
A conservation highlight for us throughout this 10 year period is we have produced 771 'Cockatubes' and distributed them around Australia.

Hardcopies of the 10 year report are available from the Landcare SJ Centre.

SUCCESSFUL State NRM Program Community Stewardship Grant 2018

Getting rid of water hyacinth at Keralup Farm, Serpentine River $25,000

This project will continue the efforts to eradicate the highly invasive weed water hyacinth from the Serpentine River, by focusing on the Keralup Farm which includes Lake Amarillo. This is the southern end of a water hyacinth infestation that is effectively being controlled to the north by the Water Corporation, and part of a previous project funded by the State NRM Program's 2015 Community Action Grants. Keralup Farm is managed by the Department of Communities and has been a very challenging site to tackle the infestation due to the diffuse wetland environment and highly invasive nature of water hyacinth. Further weed control is being carried out by the Department, and this project will assist with on-ground follow-up methods previously not undertaken, to improve the effectiveness of the spraying efforts.

A recent site visit was carried out at Keralup Farm involving representatives from Landcare SJ, the Peel-Harvey Catchment Council, Envirapest, Department of Communities, and the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation. During the visit, a northern outlier of water hyacinth was identified and will be included in the next round of control, to prevent its movement downstream and risk reinfesting areas that are presently being worked on.

Also discussed were the methods currently being implemented by Envirapest, including installation of physical barriers to chorale the weed to better control it. Project partnerships were also discussed, involving value-adding to activities. For example, the use of workforces to carry out ground surveillance and manual removal to prevent single occurrences of water hyacinth that can quickly result in re-infestations.

This project will also facilitate an aerial surveillance exercise to continue the monitoring begun in the previous project; and twice more bring the stakeholders together for the purpose of discussion and collaboration.

Where Eagles Fly and We Count Cockatoos

A recap 

On Wednesday night, Landcare SJ and Birdlife Western Australia hosted 'Where the Eagles Fly and We Count Cockatoos' at the Serpentine-Jarrahdale CRC. We had an excellent turnout with many of the attendees signing up to The Great Cocky Count afterwards. 

There were three topics discussed throughout the evening. The first topic was presented by Francis Smit (E.O of Landcare SJ) about Landcare SJ's efforts in saving black cockatoos. Not just in WA, but across Australia. With an order being placed for ten Cockatubes, which will be sent to Weiper, QLD, for Palm Cockatoos and another six that were sent to Victoria. 

Adam Peck discussed The Great Cocky Count. Informing potential participants of why the count is such a crucial citizen science project and what's involved when its count day. As well as discussing some of the data that has been collated from counts in previous years.

The final topic of the evening was presented by Simon Cherriman. Where he gave us an in-depth insight into his PhD on the Wedge Tailed Eagle. Such as where the fledglings go once they leave the nest and what threats they encounter.  


 


Help The Cause

 

  and help save these charismatic birds.

It takes over 100 years for a natural hollow to form that our endangered Black Cockatoos will breed in, but only a few minutes to donate towards the construction of Landcare SJ's 'Cockatubes'. 

Any contribution is greatly appreciated! 

Please Donate Today



(Photo by Rick Dawson)
                                Contact us:

Opening hours:
Monday to Friday 9am-4pm
Location:
Cnr Cockram St and Paterson St
(PO Box 41), Mundijong WA 6123
Phone:
(08) 9526 0012     

 


Francis Smit -
Executive Officer
Email: francis@landcaresj.com.au

Kristy Gregory -
Natural Resource
Management Officer
Email: kristy@landcaresj.com.au

 

Landcare SJ, proudly supported by the Shire of Serpentine Jarrahdale.
Copyright © *|2017* *|Landcare SJ Inc.|*, All rights reserved.


Our mailing address is:
info@landcaresj.com.au

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Landcare SJ · 12 Paterson Street · Mundijong, Wa 6123 · Australia

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