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News items - 2011

Dec 2011 - An article discussing our Habitat Network project was published in the December issue of Australian Association of Bush Regenerators newsletter. (342 kb)

June - August 2011

Johnson Controls Australia donated $1,000 USD for on-ground works in the Shrimptons Creek catchment in Ryde again this year. They are also going to actively undertake weed removal. They also donated a further $1,000 AUD for plants for Pembroke Park, Ryde and then came along and put the plants into the ground. A big thank you for all!

Foundation for National Parks & Wildlife has under their Private Land Conservation Grants Program granted $9,000 over 3 years for bitou bush management at our For Rest project site in Crescent Head. The project aims to strategically replace the bitou bush with native vegetation on the coastal sand dunes on this privately owned property. Thank you!

City of Ryde has given us a community grant for $1,000 to go towards the development of the Community Nursery at Santa Rosa Park, Ryde. Thank you!

Habitat Network project wins awards

May 2011 - IEWF has won 2 regional awards from the Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority. We received a joint 1st for the Innovation Award and a Highly Commended for the Urban Landcare Award. Well done to all involved. See the Habitat Network website for more infomation and to link to a video produced for the occasion. Also see press article in the Northern District Times.

Habitat Network - the year in review - 2011

Our aim is to continue to grow our Habitat Network as a working example of a Restoring Natural Capital project. This means a project being run for the benefit of the environment, production systems and the local community.

In order to advance this project, invasive plant and native plant education and Restoring Natural Capital we:

- network with, promote and support the activities of groups related to habitat preservation, restoration and enhancement. In 2011 we have added connections with groups in many locations including Coffs Harbour, Sutherland, Mt Annan and Manly.

- regularly give talks for other groups, such as (in 2011) City of Sydney, Sydney Metropolitan CMA, The Wilderness Society, Australian Plant Society - Sutherland, Ray Park Heritage Group and others planned with Menai Wildflower Group and Mt Annan Botanic Gardens.

- arrange for others to give talks. In April 2011 Tanya Leary did a wonderful talk on inner city bandicoots and Sydney Metropolitan Wildlife gave a talk on native habitat. We also promote talks and activities organised by other groups as appropriate, for example bird talks organised by Ryde-Hunter's Hill Flora & Fauna Preservation Society and Growers for Greenspace planting days.

- have a stall and display at the Riverside Organic Market, 4th Saturday morning of each month, where we sell local native plants to fund-raise for the Ryde community plant nursery and garden.

- put on displays, where we have habitat plant giveaways, talk to people about habitat for small birds and native animals and give out our educational material, all with the aim of encouraging people to increase native habitat at home. For example: Nov 2010 at Boronia Park Primary Big Day Out, Dec 2010 at Gladesville Market Day with the Gladesville Chamber of Commerce, June 2011 World Environment Day at Terry's Creek in partnership with Transition Epping and also at Ultimo TAFE, June 2011 at Eden Gardens One Drop Festival, July 2011 with Ray Park Heritage Group, August 2011 at Moocooboola with Hunter's Hill Council and Willoughby Council's Fauna Fair, Sept 2011 at Lane Cove Tourist Park and Ryde Rivers Festival. The Ray Park Heritage Group has also put on habitat displays at Hornsby Council events such as the plant giveaway day in March 2011. Willoughby Council printed our new habitat haven poster as a banner and used it as a focal point at the bushcare stand at the Easter Show. Thanks to a Hunter's Hill Council Community Grant we have some new equipment to use for our displays and talks.

- are regularly developing and providing brochures, advice and display materials to National Parks, Councils, schools, other habitat projects. Watch our home pages of this website and the Habitat Network website for new materials. Also see our resource list below.

- are continuing to add new weed pages to our Web Weed Lookup.

- have developed invasive vine brochures in Mandarin and English which are non Council specific, with funds from the Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority's grant and the assistance of some wonderful volunteers. With this funding we also developed new Creating Habitat information brochures.

- are starting a community native plant nursery in order to have local provenance native habitat plants available to the wider community for use in their gardens and at local bushcare sites. We have approval from Councillors and staff of City of Ryde to start. We are still however waiting for more paperwork to be completed before we can start building the nursery. And we have funding to get the nursery up and running from the 2010 NSW Government's Community Building Partnership program, thank you to the NSW Government and our local MP Victor Dominello. We also have a small grant from City of Ryde. See www.habitatnetwork.org/CommunityNursery.htm for more information. As an extension to this we plan to start a bushcare group for the upper catchment of Shrimpton's Creek - its primary focus will be creating small bird habitat and attracting small native birds back to the upper reaches of Shrimpton's Creek and to the nursery site.

- are working with City of Ryde to create a community food garden around the native plant nursery.

- are partners with Hunter's Hill Council working towards re-connecting native plant habitat corridors for small birds especially along Tarban Creek, through Riverglade Reserve and around to Bedlam Bay. We are also liaising with the RTA, NPWS, University of NSW, the Gladesville Hospital and Riverside Girls High all with interests within this corridor. We are also on the community advisory group for Ryde and Hunter's Hill Council's River to River project, aiming to reconnect native habitat from Parramatta River to Lane Cove River. This project is complementary to the Tarban Creek project.

- are trying find a location for a community sustainable garden in Hunter's Hill.

- organise walks and activities with our Council partners, for other Councils and habitat projects. In January 2011 we ran another fun and interesting Twilight Twitter led by Kurtis Lindsay. In Feb 2011 we took a group of Ryde Bushcare volunteers for a visit to the Ku-ring-gai flying fox colony where we not only saw flying foxes but also learnt a lot about appropriate habitat creation. Thank you to Nancy Pallin and Marjorie Beck for guiding us and for arranging this visit for us to this unique location and to Sandra Payne from City of Ryde Bushcare. And in May/June 2011 in partnership with Ryde's Catchment Connections project we guided more twighlight fauna spotting walks, led by Kurtis.

- undertake bird surveys, led by Kurtis Lindsay and with assistance from others from Macquarie University, in both the Tarban Creek to Bedlam Bay corridor and also the Shrimpton's Creek corridor. Kurtis has also assisted Dr Andrew Hugget of Insight Ecology with surveys for the River to River project.

- assist with planting activities, plants, grant applications, and garden and/or habitat planning at local primary and high schools sometimes in conjuction with the Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre. June 2011 we were at West Ryde Primary School. May 2011 we judged a sustainability art competition and presented prizes at Holy Spirit School see here for a short story about their habitat project. In Sept 2010 we presented at a teacher training day at the Field of Mars Environmental Education Centre. We have also helped various university students with environmental surveys, interviews and reports.

- maintain and update the information on the IEWF, Habitat Network and RNC Alliance websites.

- early in 2011 we produced some new materials and a presentation to be used for Keep Austrlia Beautiful's Graffiti Action Day. See below. The aim is to promote planting of habitat plants in front of walls or fences (where possible) as a graffiti prevention and /or security measure. In total in May 2011 1.5 km of plants were planted as part of this action day.

- as time permits we also do local home visits to discuss habitat, weeds and sustainable gardens. For people further afield (in Australia and overseas) we help with plant identification and advice via email, we even identified a plant for the Orpheus Island Research Station recently. If we get stuck with an identification the The Royal Botanic Gardens in Sydney give us a helping hand - thank you! Also recently we have been assisted by WA Department of Agriculture and Perth Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority - thank you! We encourage our members and friends to send their bird, animal and habitat photos for inclusion on the Habitat Network website. From these pages and our pictorial weed identification pages on the IEWF website many people can work towards identifying many plants and animals themselves.

- Visitors from overseas interested in habitat restoration and weed management are made welcome and as appropriate we make introductions to local professionals. In July 2011 we were delighted to meet with and co-ordinate a visit by an ecologist involved in landscape level restoration in Madagascar.

- We also allow our photos (not those of our members - unless authority given) to be used for not-for-profit publications - recent examples are Sutherland Shire's environmental weed identification web pages and Canadian Food Inspection Agency's Invasive Plant Field Guide currently in production. We have also this year helped in collecting information for a students PhD research degree at Deakin University.

In Feb 2011 - we were very pleased to be invited as special guests for the launch of the Pittwater Road Greenthumbs Cummunity Garden for which we had provided support.

See news articles from 2005 to 2010

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