By: Michael Fox

Clairvaux Bushcarers - 14 May 2018

Clairvaux Bushcarers

Our new partnership with Clairvaux MacKillop College is off to a great start. Clairvaux Bushcarers joined us last Monday to help prepare the 2018 National Tree Day site.

The team worked so hard removing weeds and moving branches to make the site safe, our Tuesday Bushcare group was able to finalise the preparation ready for spreading mulch.

 

Proud Weed Busters - 14 May 2018

Proud Weed Busters

It was a real pleasure to work with the students, a bit like herding cats, but still a real pleasure.

Over fifty years ago Frederick Herzberg identified recognition and a sense of achievement as two key factors in helping individuals build their motivation. Watching the students’ level of engagement and energy grow as they worked was an excellent example of Hertzberg’s research in action.

Variable Ladybird Beetles - Coelophora inaequalis - 14 May 2018

Variable Ladybird Beetle

Removing huge clumps of Guinea Grass Megathyrsus maximus really does provide a great sense of achievement and by removing and bagging the seed heads dramatically reduces weed regrowth.

The Clairvaux Bushcarers also had a wonderful time finding “bugs” for me to photograph. Like this Variable Ladybird Beetle Coelophora inaequalis.

26-spotted Potato Ladybird - Epilachna vigintisexpunctata - 14 May 2018

26-spotted Potato Ladybird

 

The students also found  26-spotted Potato Ladybird Epilachna vigintisexpunctata which is a new addition to our Flora & Fauna of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve.

 

 

Variable Ladybird Beetles - Coelophora inaequalis - larve - 14 May 2018

Variable Ladybird Beetle larvae

 

 

I was also able to introduce the students to the strange looking Ladybird Beetle larvae.

 

Variable Ladybird Beetle Coelophora inaequalis larvae.

Common Spotted Ladybird - Harmonia conformis - larva - 14 May 2018

Common Spotted Ladybird Beetle

 

 

 

Common Spotted Ladybird Beetle Harmonia conformis larvae.

 

Common Assassin Bug - Pristhesancus plagipennis - 5th Instar - 14 May 2018

Common Assassin Bug 5th Instar

 

 

 

 

 

Common Assassin Bug Pristhesancus plagipennis 5th Instar. As the name suggests Assassin Bugs are pest controllers for your garden feeding on spiders and other insects.

Common Methana - Methana marginalis - large nymph - native cocoroach - 14 May 2018

Common Methana

 

 

 

 

Common Methana Methana marginalis large nymph. A native cockroach, the Common Methana are great recyclers turning leaves into soil and food for lizards and birds.

Bark Cockroach - Laxta sp. - 14 May 2018

Bark Cockroach

 

 

 

 

 

Bark Cockroach Laxta sp. are another curious native cockroach working hard to recycle leaf litter.

 

 

Yellow-shouldered Stout Hover Fly - Simosyrphus grandicornis - 14 May 2018

Yellow-shouldered Stout Hover Fly

 

 

 

 

Yellow-shouldered Stout Hover Fly Simosyrphus grandicornis 

 

 

Clairvaux Bushwalkers - Weed Busting - 10 May 2018

Creeping Lantana

 

 

 

 

The Clairvaux Bushwalkers helped the previous week, removing Creeping Lantana Lantana montevidenses* (the asterisk * is used to identify non-native species).

 

Small Dusky Blue - Candalides erinus - topside - 10 May 2018

Small Dusky Blue butterfly feeding

 

 

 

 

 

Small Dusky Blue Candalides erinus butterfly feeding on nectar from the flower of a Purple Fleabane Cyanthillium cinereum. Look for the proboscis: a hollow drinking straw the butterfly unrolls. Natives like the Purple Fleabane are returning as Creeping Lantana is removed.

 

 

 

 

 

On Friday we hosted the Clairvaux Scientists who checked water quality in Mimosa Creek.

 

 

 

Checking acidy - 18 May 2018

Acid Test

 

 

The water sample was then tested with litmus paper which established a healthy neutral water.

 

 

Fiery Skimmer Dragonfly - Orthetrum villosovittatum - 18 May 2018

Fiery Skimmer Dragonfly

 

 

We also spotted a new dragonfly species to add to the species list. Fiery Skimmer Dragonfly Orthetrum villosovittatum

 

Thank you to all the Clairvaux students and staff.

I am looking forward to growing a long partnership restoring Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve and learning environmental skills.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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By: Michael Fox

 

Tuesday Bushcare today was weeding the 2015/16 National Tree Day planting and preparing for this year’s planting site.

The planting was planned to create habitat for small forest birds. A combination of Habitat Tripods to create the scrubby tangled space that is safe for birds like Fairy Wrens to nest and attracting insects as food for Fairy Wrens. #WaterFoodShelter

Large Grass Yellow - Eurema hecabe - 24 Apr 2018 lr

Large Grass Yellow Eurema hecabe

Today’s Bushcare was very special as I three species to our database: Flora and Fauna of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve.

A dragonfly, Black-headed Skimmer Crocothemis nigrifrons, two Large Grass Yellow Eurema hecabe butterflies doing some speed dating and a Brown Bush Fly Musca terraereginae are all new species add to the database.

 

Brown Bush Fly - Musca terraereginae - 24 Apr 2018 cropped

Brown Bush Fly Musca terraereginae 

We also spotted Wide-brand Grass-dart  Suniana Sunias and Small Dusky Blue – Candalides erinus butterflies and a Magpie Moth Nyctemera secundiana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finding all these species in the small bird habitat is evidence of success and an excellent example of how Pollinator Link Plant Local to Feed Locals can bring Birds, Butterflies and Bees to your garden. #WaterFoodShelter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Large Tick-trefoil - Desmodium brachypodum - flower close - 26 Mar 2018

Large Tick-trefoil – flower

By: Michael Fox

It is a real pleasure and a bonus of my Bushcare work to find new species to add to our Flora and Fauna of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve.

Today, botanist Ann Moran, identified the plant I photographed yesterday as Large Tick-trefoil Desmodium brachypodum a new addition to our list of plants found in the Reserve.

Large Tick-trefoil - Desmodium brachypodum - leaf - 26 Mar 2018

Large Tick-trefoil

We have already identified two other native Desmodiums growing in the Reserve:

  • Slender Tick Trefoil Desmodium gunnii
  • Hairy/Rusty Tic-trefoil Desmodium rhytidophyllum

Finding Large Tick-trefoil means we now have two hundred and eighty three native plant species identified in the Reserve.

Large Tick-trefoil - Desmodium brachypodum - seed pod - 26 Mar 2018

Large Tick-trefoil – seed pods

Equal to 20% of the total native species found in the 32 million hectares of the United Kingdom, two hundred and eighty three native plant species is an excellent measure of the species diversity found in Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve.

 

Net Casting Spider - Deinopis ravida - female - web - 27 Mar 2018

Net Casting Spider – female

 

 

 

This morning’s find was a different species of the curious Net Casting Spider Deinopis ravida. The two bumps on its sides identifies this as a female.

Net Casting Spiders have a unique way of catching breakfast. They sit with their web held between their front legs ready to quickly spread and trap prey. See the web on lower right of photo.

Watch the action in slow motion: Youtube video.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fungi colourBy: Michael Fox

Thanks to our Photography Workshop leader Alan Moore we have an extraordinary fungi tour of colour and shape.

Like what you see?

Register for the 2018 Photography Workshop.

Colour display - 12 March 2018

Colour display 3 - 12 March 2018

Colour display 4 - 12 March 2018

Colour display 5 - 12 March 2018

White fungi 6 March 2018

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Orange Mushrooms - 23 March 2018

Log display - 26 March 2018 lowres

Basidiomycota - red fleshy pore - 8 March 2018

Polypore (Word Decay) - Basidiomycota - 26 March 2018 lowres

20180327_1115_01

Earth Star - Geastrum triplex - 25 March 2018

Learn make your own photographic story.

Register for the 2018 Photography Workshop.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple fungiSunday 27 May

Discover tools to see nature up close to tell your story.

Macro photography is about concentrating on small details. You, the photographer, control subject selection, isolation, lighting, perspective and camera controls to create a spectacular visual narrative.

We will start by running through some camera basics (controls, modes, settings) before exploring how to use camera settings to isolate close-up subjects and get the most from lighting and angles.

Then we put it into practice exploring Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve to find your story to share with the group.

Registration form

Lincoln

Cub Scout Lincon

By: Michael Fox

 

Heather Woods and her family, again hosted our annual Clean Up Australia event.

Twenty-nine community members, including Cr Krista Adams and Corrine McMillan MP collected seventeen bags of rubbish: drink bottles, McDonalds’ bags and car parts.

Heather organised us into three teams:

  • Summit Team – families cleaning up the Summit;
  • Eloise

    Guide Eliose on the job

    Road Team collecting rubbish from Mt Gravatt Outlook Drive; and

  • Weeding Team – Lantana busting at the 2017 National Tree Day site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Griffith Mates team joined the Weeding Team clearing a large area of Creeping Lantana Lantana montevidensis as well as weed grasses along the road verge.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I was able to show the Weeding Team members the natural regeneration of native plants where the Creeping Lantana was removed as part of National Tree Day.

Bell Flower vine is a delicate scrambler spreading in the cleared area.

 

Winter Apple -Eremophila debilis - flower - 4 March 2018 lowres

Winter Apple Eremophila debilis

 

 

 

Winter Apple Eremophila debilis is a herb with a small mauve flower and cute little apple like fruit.

 

 

 

 

 

 

A great morning working with inspiring people and a lot of rubbish taken to the dump.

 

 

By: Michael Fox

 

Cr. Steven Huang was interested in everything when he visited Roly Chapman Bushcare in February. He was particularly impressed with the Gross Pollution Trap installed to catch drink containers and plastic bags washed out of the storm water drain.

The trap was made with a recycled security screen and star pickets. We have been waiting on a storm event to test out the structure. Last week’s storms dumped about 170 mm of rain on Upper Mt Gravatt in 24 hours. A good test for the Pollution Trap.

 

 

 

 

 

 

We inspected the trap this morning to find the water flow must have been very strong to build litter up about 30 centimetres

 

 

 

 

 

 

Plastic bags and drink containers that didn’t pollute the bushland.

The success of the pollution trap is great contribution to protecting our bushland.

You can make a contribution by joining Clean Up Australia this Sunday.