Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve


 

By: Michael Fox

 

I inspected the National Tree Day planting site today and as always I am impressed how local natives can thrive even in the dry weather we have been having. Rain this week will be a real boost however even before the rain most of the plants our community team put in have been thriving. Brisbane Fringed Wattle - Acacia fimbriata - 5 Feb 2019 lowres

Seven months on the Brisbane Fringed Wattles  Acacia fimbriata are outgrowing the green plant shelters, Blady Grass Imperata cylindrica and Kangaroo Grass Themeda triandra are standing tall, and Dusky Coral Pea Kennedia rubicunda is draped over the Habitat Tripod.

Native Hibiscus - Hibiscus heterophyllus - 5 Feb 2019 lowres

 

 

 

Native Hibiscus/Rosella Hibiscus heterophyllus are thriving and already feeding local insects which is the first step in attracting insect eating birds like Variegated Fairy Wrens Malurus lamberti. Native Hibiscus not only feeds insects it is also a versatile bush food for your Pollinator Link garden.

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By: Michael Fox

Sue Jones has, for years, been an inspiration for a wide range of Mt Gravatt community members from Meals on Wheels to Mansfield Melody Makers. My contact with Sue started about 10 years ago when she introduced me to the Habitat Brisbane Bushcare programme and mentored me as I established Fox Gully Bushcare.

S Star War of Trees 2 30 Jun 10Sue has been defending the special habitat of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve for years. However, she has decided that is time to hand leadership of Gertrude Petty Place Bushcare over to the next generation.

Sheamus O’Connor who takes over from Sue in July is a great example of the next generation of community leaders.

Sue’s Legacy

Holland Park Kindy Mt Gravatt 9 July 12 001

Checking out a native bee nest

Sue particularly loves introducing kids to the wonders of the environment and particularly our special piece of Australian bush right in Mt Gravatt. Holland Park Kindergarten Bush Adventure at Gertrude Petty Place.

 

 

 

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Susan showing cut sapling

 

Bushcare requires a long term focus. Restoration of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve is repairing damage done by logging over 100 years ago before visionary Mt Gravatt community members who lobbied for creation of the Reserve. Sue builds on that tradition engaging diverse community members in the restoration: Griffith Students Deliver Results.

I have had the honour of partnering with warrior Sue to successfully tackle the ongoing problem of illegal mountain bike riding damaging plants and causing erosion. Threats: Downhill Mountain Biking, Trail Bikes & Unofficial Tracks

 

Sheamus building the Future

Nat Tree Day Planting Group Photo 2011 010

Mt Gravatt SHS Team

Sheamus also believes in community action to build our future and has been contributing to restoration of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve starting when he was still attending Mt Gravatt State High School. Mt Gravatt SHS students planting their future

 

 

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Sheamus Water Warrior

 

Sheamus has already been identified as an environmental warrior.  Graduated from Griffith University Sheamus is now sharing his passion for the environment and science, teaching the next generation at Whites Hill State College.

 

Volunteer to help Sheamus build our future

The Gertrude Petty Place Bushcare team meets monthly on the last Saturday of the month 8am to 10am.

Grab a friend and join other generous and passionate community members working with Sheamus to build a strong Bushcare team.

More details see our Bushcare Calendar.

 

 

 

 

By: Michael Fox

Join CleanUp Australia – Mt Gravatt Summit

koala - outlook - 5 jan 2019

CleanUp and restoration work is making an impact with wildlife like this Koala photographed at Summit carpark in January.

Date: Sunday March 3rd 2019

Start time: 7:30 AM to 9:30 AM

Meet at: Mt Gravatt Summit carpark – near Love Well Project

Please join our Clean Up teams picking up rubbish or removing Creeping Lantana

 

By: Michael Fox

 

Hosts for our 2019 Australia Day Street Party Dominika and Rafal bring a touch of European culture to our Mountain community. Rafal tells me, the opportunity to live with Koalas and all the other wildlife at their backdoor, is the reason they purchased their property.

2019 australia day

How much do you know about Australia? (Click to expand)

 

Trivia Master, Rose O’Brien shared her knowledge and passion for everything Australian. Everyone was heads down sharing their knowledge to win the Australia Day Trivia Quiz. Dave winner for second year in a row was closely followed by Jenny. Test your knowledge. Answers: scroll to bottom.

 

2019 aust day story

Building community

The amazing diversity of flora and fauna within Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve was matched by the diversity community members from Arafua, O’Grady, other local streets. Every age group and at least six different countries of origin were represented among this happy group getting know their neighbours.

Social researcher Hugh Mackay tells us: “… only one-third of Australians say they trust their neighbours.” Hugh Mackay: the state of the nation starts in your street Mackay says that this does not mean that “… 65% of neighbours are untrustworthy – what it must mean is that most people in our society don’t know their neighbours well enough to have learnt to trust them.” It is a pleasure to live in a community where people make the effort to build trust and make a stronger Australia.

Like Alan’s photography? Watch for registration post or email me to book a place in our Annual Photography Workshop on May 19. Find examples of Alan’s photography at Free Large Photos.

If you want to study up for the next Australia Day Trivia visit Rose’s blog Bush, Beaches and Being Alive: Queensland as I See It where she shares amazing stories from remote Burketown to Brisbane Walks.

Australia Day Trivia Quiz: Answers

By: Michael Fox

Koala - walking - 4 Dec 11 - J McCrystal

Koala Mt Gravatt Outlook Drive

Koala breeding season is here again: August to February. So it is very important that dogs visiting Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve are kept on a leash at all times. Dog owners regularly tell us that “their dogs wouldn’t attack koalas because they’re well trained and don’t cause problems.” However, the RSPCA rescue volunteer releasing a young male Koala at Gertrude Petty Place yesterday told Sue Jones different story “dogs are more often than not implicated in Koala rescues.”

Koala Family - Alan Moore - 29 Sept 2018 lr

Koala Family (l-r) father, joey (male), mother

Alan Moore photographed this family group last Saturday in Fox Gully Bushcare behind houses in O’Grady Street.

 

Toni McDonald photographed another Koala last Wednesday in Firefly Gully off Mt Gravatt Road.

We now have a healthy Koala population in the Reserve and people often ask how many Koalas there are. Until now, other than telling them that we have two or three joeys each year I don’t have any detailed numbers to share. The joint Queensland University of Technology-Brisbane City Council research using heat-seeking drones should provide valuable population information.

 

 

 

 

 

Bellvine - Ipomoea plebeia - 1 Oct 2018 lr

Young Bellvine Ipomoea plebeia

By: Michael Fox

I love the sound of rain so I was very happy to sit with my coffee yesterday watching the rain. I also appreciate not having to water the National Tree Day plants this morning.

Good site preparation and good planting means the most of the plants have been going well even with the dry weather. So it was particularly special to visit the site this morning and find the first signs of natural regeneration: a young Bellvine Ipomoea plebeia with it distinctive first two leaves.

Dusky Coral Pea - Kennedia rubicunda - 1 Oct 2018 lr

Dusky Coral Pea Kennedia rubicunda

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The Dusky Coral Pea Kennedia rubicunda is already spreading ready to climb the Habitat Tripod to create habitat for small birds. Note the new dusky ping leave to the right.

 

Costal Banksia - Banksia integrifolia - 1 Oct 2018

Coastal Banksia Banksia integrifolia

 

 

 

A number of Coastal Banksias Banksia integrifolia have been lost to the dry weather. However, most have not only survived but are already putting out new shoots.

 

 

Flat-stemmed Wattle - Acacia complanata - 1 Oct 2018 lr

Flat-stemmed Wattle Acacia complanata

 

 

 

The Flat-stemmed Wattle Acacia complanata also have new shoots.

 

 

 

 

Small Acacia Longicorn Beetle - Ancita varicornis - 1 Oct 2018

Small Acacia Longicorn Beetle

 

Even more exciting when I was inspecting a Flat-stemmed Wattle I found a Small Acacia Longicorn Beetle Ancita varicornisa new species addition to our Flora & Fauna of Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve. This is part of the planning for the small bird habitat: attracting insects to feed insect eating birds. Providing food for insects is a key to attracting birds and butterflies to your garden: Plant Local to Feed Locals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

By: Michael Fox

Mother of Millions - Bryophyllum tubiflorum - weeds - 29 May 2018

Mother-of-Millions

Tuesday Bushcare focused on maintenance and clearing weeds at the 2017 National Tree Day planting site.

Two garbage bags of Mother-of-Millions Bryophyllum tubiflorum removed will not eradicate this garden escapee. Complete eradication will take years however systematic control will reduce the spread while the area is cleared of other weeds.

Resurrection Plant - Bryophyllum pinnatum - leaf sprouting - 13 Apr 2018 lr

Resurrection Plant growing from a leaf.

Dumping garden waste like Mother-of-Millions is a real problem for our bushland, parks and creeks. Being a succulent it survives even in harsh conditions. Like Resurrection Plant Bryophyllum pinnatum, another invader from Madagascar, Mother-of-Millions regrows from as little as a single leaf. Garden waste like lawn clippings, prunings from shrubs and old pot plants are rubbish not compost adding value to bushland.

 

 

Dump garden rubbish in rubbish bin not in bushland.

 

 

 

I was also able to show Jake and Carl some of our interesting flora.

Like the curious Bird’s Nest Fungi Cyathus novaezelandiae which propagates by the action of rain drops knock the egg-like peridioles out of the cup shaped fruit body.

 

 

 

 

We also found moss fruiting. Orthodontium lineare, called Cape Thread-moss in the United Kingdom, an addition to our Flora & Fauna Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve species list.

 

 

Insect - 29 May 2018

Rasp Fern

 

 

Rasp Fern Doodia media (australis) with an, as yet, unidentified insect. You realise how well named Rasp fern is when you run your fingers over the leaves: they feel just like the rough sharp surface of a wood rasp.

Star Goodenia - Goodenia rotundifolia - 29 May 2018 cropped

Star Goodenia

 

 

Star Goodenia Goodenia rotundifolia is easy to identify with its unique leaf shape.

The yellow flowered Star Goodenia is a caterpillar food plant for the Meadow Argus Junonia villida butterfly.

 

Pardalote nest holes - 29 May 2018 lr

Pardalote nest holes

 

 

 

We also found what are probably nest holes for the small Pardalotes: small birds that dig nest holes in earth banks but spend most of their time high in the trees where you can hear their distinctive “chip chip chip” call. Watch video of Striated Pardalote.

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