Rover Street Bushcare


(l-r) Len Kann, Michael Fox, Laurie Deacon

(l-r) Len Kann, Michael Fox, Laurie Deacon

By: Michael Fox

I joined our President – Laurie Deacon and Len Kann at Mt Gravatt Bowls Club on Saturday to celebrate Queensland Day and join Ian Walker MP, Cr Krista Adams and other community members acknowledging some of the special volunteers who keep our sports teams operating or provide  support for the most vulnerable people in our community.

Southside Sport & Community Club every year provide generous support for community groups with the Community Grants Scheme. Mt Gravatt Environment Group has received a grant that will allow us to purchase specialised equipment for our bush restoration teams. We now have seven teams restoring bushland sites around the mountain and building a Pollinator Link garden at Mt Gravatt SHS.

Southside’s generous support has already allowed us to purchase a chipper for recycling weed trees and GoPro camera used to monitor nesting boxes installed at Fox Gully Bushcare site.

 

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By: Michael Fox

Wishart Ward habitat groups with Cr Krista Adams and Ian Walker MP

Yesterday I attended the launch of an amazing book which captures the history of  habitat groups within the eastern creek catchments of Brisbane. The true genus of this book is that it is a compilation of stories written by group members and illustrated by photos submitted by each group. Each story paints a personal picture of a habitat community with group activities, community events and flora and fauna as seen through the eyes of individuals who truly care about that patch of urban bushland.

Congratulations to the BCC Habitat Brisbane team members who bought this alive and thanks to the BCC Councilors who had the vision to provide the financial support.

Bushcare groups represented

The launch was hosted by Bulimba Creek Catchment Coordinating Committee (B4C) at the Sustainability Centre and Native Plant Nursery.

Reading the stories and understanding the scope of the Habitat Brisbane programme, this is only the Eastern Catchments, fills me with pride in our Brisbane community and hope for the future.

Copies of this high quality small volume photo book can be ordered by emailing B4C. Cost is $120.

Three Mt Gravatt Environment Group Bushcare sites are represented:

Gertrude Petty Place Bushcare

Rover Street Bushcare

Fox Gully Bushcare

2011 has been a big year for Mt Gravatt Environment Group so to receive two top awards from Bulimba Creek Catchment Coordinating Committee (B4C) is a very satisfying way to round off and prepare for 2012.

I was personally awarded Environmentalist of The Year which is a great honour coming from some of the most committed and experienced environmentalists I have ever met.

Mt Gravatt Environment Group was awarded Bushcare Group of 2011 which truly reflects the extraordinary work of a large number of community members but particularly our Bushcare coordinators:

Our achievements also build on the strong support of Kate Flink, our BCC Habitat Brisbane Officer, the B4C team, Ann Moran and Alan Moore who presented our Environmental & Photography Workshop, community groups like Mt Gravatt Men’s Shed, McGregor Lions Club, Southside Sport and Recreation Club and Mt Gravatt Historical Society, Griffith University, BCC Mt Gravatt Library and local politicians Phil Reeves MP and Cr Krista Adams and their excellent staff.

Now it is time to take a holiday and get ready for an even more extraordinary 2012.

Showgrounds Precinct - click to enlarge

Mt Gravatt forms an inspiring backdrop for Showground events like last Sunday’s Green Heart Fair and the Showgrounds link our mountain heart with our community in a way unique in Brisbane and possibly the world.

The Mt Gravatt Precinct Landscape Plan aims to build those community links as an integral part of the environmental restoration of this important and diverse Australian bush habitat only 10 kilometres from Brisbane CBD.

Click here to download the plan: Mt Gravatt Showgrounds Precinct Landscape Plan – ver 3.0 email

The plan is based on our vision for the restoration of Mt Gravatt and complements the Mimosa Creek Precinct Landscape Plan.

Pollinator Links, a key part of the Landscape Plan, will link Mt Gravatt Reserve with Bulimba Creek via the Showgrounds and Jo’s Creek. Pollinator Links are an innovative approach to creating wildlife corridors through the fragmented urban landscape. These urban ecological corridors will allow pollinators such as Sugarbag Stingless, Leafcutter and Blue-banded bees (all recorded on Mt Gravatt) to move between fragmented habitats.  Birds like Grey Fantails and Golden Whistlers, butterflies like Orchard Swallowtails and Tailed Emperor will also utilise these pathways, thereby returning these species to our backyards.

While the environment is the key focus building and maintaining long-term financial and community commitment requires creation of shared value through identification of business opportunities and community benefits derived from habitat restoration. The Showgrounds – Mountain Link Track is one example of shared value creation – creating easier access to mountain walking tracks and opportunities for “King of the Mountain” type tourism events based at the Showgrounds.

Any feedback or ideas for business or community opportunities? Email Mt Gravatt Environment Group

Brett with Koala Mum in background (top right)

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We know that Koalas are breeding on Mt Gravatt. We are getting regular reports of sightings from all around the mountain and I have even woken to find a young male climbing onto the deck at night. However, today, our Rover Street Bushcare co-ordinator, Brett Dugdale, shared something I have never seen before: a mother and joey together.

In Mt Gravatt we live only ten kilometres from Brisbane CBD and we have Koalas in our “backyard”. As a community we are stewards of a truly unique piece of Australian bush habitat.

I am honoured to know Brett. He is not only passionate about protecting and restoring the mountain habitat; he also brings a wealth of practical restoration experience gained working with Bulimba Creek Catchment Co-ordinating Committee (B4C).

Brett notes that the Brisbane City Council fox eradication program – seven foxes have been removed from Mt Gravatt Reserve in the last twelve months – is having a positive effect on the mountain wildlife. However, as Koala numbers increase,  conflict with domestic pets will become an increasing problem: a young Koalawas attacked by a dog in a local backyard last week. That lucky Koala was OK after being checked out by RSPCA vets and returned to the mountain.

Please keep your dogs on-leash when walking in the Reserve and of course carry bags for dog droppings. Koalas tend to avoid areas where they can smell dog droppings so if we want to encourage Koalas we need to clean up after our dogs.

If you find any injured wildlife in the Brisbane area you can call the BCC Wildlife Ambulance – BCC Call Centre 3403 8888.

Mt Gravatt Environment Group has joined Fox Gully Bushcare as a finalist in the 2011 Keep Australia BeautifulSpotless Suburbs Award.

Mt Gravatt Environment Group coordinates four Bushcare groups:

  • Gertrude Petty Place Bushcare – Sue Jones
  • Rover Street Bushcare – Brett Dugdale
  • Fox Gully Bushcare – Michael Fox
  • Roly Chapman Reserve Bushcare – currently no team leader

We appreciate Cr Adams’ support in nomination of of Mt Gravatt Environment Group and we are proud to represent our community by reaching the finals of the Brisbane’s Spotless Suburbs competition.