Soaking up the winter sun

By: Michael Fox

What do you do on a cold mountain morning? Warm up in the sun!

A handsome Square-tailed Kite Lophoictinia isura was perched in a sunny spot this morning soaking up the winter sun.

It is always special to when we see special wildlife at our Fox Gully Bushcare site.



Look out for the amazing new sculpture at the Shire Road entry to the Reserve. Featuring our local native flora and fauna the totem pole shows off the special residents who call the Reserve home.

This morning artist Jamie Maclean was putting finishing touches adding colour to our special addition welcoming visitors.

Thanks to Councillor Krista Adams who commissioned the sculpture through the Lord Mayors Suburban Enhancement Fund.


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

Briefing time - 6 Mar 2016

Clean Up team sign-in

7am Sunday morning!

Site coordinator Heather Woods explained that an early start would avoid the heat and leave volunteers free for the rest of the day. After the team briefing, Heather deployed different groups:

The Kokoda Youth Foundation supports young Australians, inspiring them to do extraordinary things. We challenge their deeply held beliefs, allowing them to explore their limits and abilities, and provide them with opportunities for personal growth.It was an inspiration to meet and work with these young people.

Krista with Kakoda  - 6 Mar 2016

Cr Adams with Kokoda Lantana Weed Busters



Cr Krista Adams joined the Lantana Weed Busters learning more about our Bushcare work as well as taking the opportunity to meet some of Australia’s future leaders.




Graham Quirk - 6 Mar 2016 low res

Lord Mayor Quirk with Clean Up team members

I had to opportunity to talk with Lord Mayor Graham Quirk as we cleaned up around the 2 Millionth Tree Planting at the Summit. I complemented the Lord Mayor on the Council support for our Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve. Now that Council officers lock the gate at night and clear up around the picnic area we have much less rubbish. Even the broken glass we were picking up seemed to be from older thin glass stubbies or older style beer bottles.

We also discussed the Pollinator Link project. I was proud to explain to the Lord Mayor of Brisbane that we now have our first first Certified Pollinator Link Garden in Sandgate and regular articles appear in Living in the Shires published by Harcouts Graceville. Now we just need to get our Council Parks meeting the Pollinator Link criteria with water for wildlife and nest-boxes.

Results - 6 Mar 2016

Clean Up success



Clean Up success. Thirty volunteers scoured the Reserve and even with half working as Lantana Weed Busters there was still a huge pile of rubbish collected. Even a microwave dumped at Federation Lookout.



Girl power - 6 Mar 2016 low res

Clean Up team sign-in






However, I think the prize need to go to the Girl Power team who collected so much rubbish beside the road they had to return for extra bags and still struggled back to the Summit with two more full bags of rubbish.








Lord Mayor's 2016 Australia Day Awards

Laurie receiving Green Heart Award

By: Michael Fox

Mt Gravatt Environment Group was honoured on Australia Day with presentation of the Lord Mayor’s Green Heart Award – Organisation 2016.





The award citation:

“Mount Gravatt Environment Group is dedicated to their local environment. Their mantra ‘bringing birds and butterflies back to suburbia’, is achieved by the careful planning and implementation of many projects within the local community including mountain and gully restoration and various flora and fauna projects. The group has been responsible for the rehabilitation of Fox Gully into a vibrant wildlife corridor.

The group works closely with other community organisations to ensure maximum outcome and benefits for Mount Gravatt.”

Laurie Deacon Family and Cr Adams

Cr Krista Adams, myself, Laurie and Sigrid with Green Heart Award

Our President, Laurie Deacon, Sigrid – representing the next generation, and I all attended the award ceremony. An impressive event held in City Hall and hosting an amazing group of individuals members who are giving their time generously to our community.

As with many community groups, the achievements acknowledged with this award are the combined efforts of many individual Mt Gravatt Environment Group members, as well as, some extraordinary community partners who provide support with training, equipment, plants, grant funding, research and boots on the ground. Thank you to:




By: Michael Fox

Breakfast with Spencer Howson


(l-r) Emily -Cafe Manager, Cr Krista Adams, Anne-Maree – Hope Foundation

An exciting announcement of new operator for the cafe at Mt Gravatt Summit as Loretta Ryan interviewed Cr Krista Adams and Anne-Maree, representing the Hope Foundation.

“Hope Foundation is ecstatic about being the successful tender applicant. We have experienced hospitality staff ready to get in there and start things rolling; some of the Hope Chicks have already completed their coffee training through Di Bella Coffee, although being even partially operational will be about 4 weeks away. And we are – genuinely – delighted and encouraged by all the community support already coming our way. In short – YAY!!!”

Ann-Maree, Executive Assistant   |  HOPE Foundation

Hope FoundationWe are looking forward to partnering with the Hope team, building a strong future for Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve at the heart of our local community. An iconic bushland location just 10km from Brisbane CBD the Reserve is a special place, home to Koalas and Echidnas with strong links to both indigenous and European histories.

It is great news to know that the cafe will reopen soon and The Love Well Project, though a social enterprise, has a strong commercial focus with an experienced professional manager and backed by a valuable team of business mentors.

PlaygroundThe focus on weekday breakfasts and platters to share will complement and enhance the the way our community and visitors use the mountain, serving morning cyclists and families trying out the new picnic facilities.

Cr Adams and Brisbane City Council have worked hard to make Mt Gravatt Summit an ideal place for a picnic.


Toilet block - Summit - 9 June 2015Public toilets may not be as exciting as the brightly coloured playground but they are important infrastructure to make this a must visit tourist destination.






New seating and picnic tables, where friends can share a platter and what the sunset, complete the facilities for visitors.

Relax and enjoy a meal before exploring the mountain walking tracks.


(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.


By: Michael Fox

Key threats to Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve:

Southern Star 14 November 2012

Geoff and Jeanette are proud of our community and take great pride in their part of the Fox Gully corridor. So it is understandable that they get a bit frustrated with the careless behaviour of individuals rubbishing our streets, particularly when that rubbish will be washed into peaceful Mimosa Creek.

Changing the behaviour of individuals waiting for a bus stop can be difficult. However, an important step is to ensure that there is a simple alternative for disposing of their drink bottle or chip packet.

Mimosa Creek – Roly Chapman Reserve

Cr Krista Adams
has now committed Council to ensuring that the bin is emptied regularly and possibly replaced with a larger bin. Ideally a combination rubbish recycling bin.

Mimosa Creek, Roly Chapman Reserve just behind PCYC.

Relief Worker road builders honoured

By: Michael Fox

Clare Boulter, President Mt Gravatt Historical Society, and Lord Mayor Graham Quirk have unveiled a plaque honouring the Relief Workers who first built what is now Mt Gravatt Outlook Drive. The plaque in the garden at Mt Gravatt Lookout was unveiled at a community event on 26 August.

The information for the plaque was researched by members of the Historical Society. The society publishes Mt Gravatt “Then and Now”, now including Volume 3 which covers stories and memories of long-term residents, who, by example and effort contributed to the establishment of modern-day Mt Gravatt.


Cr Krista Adams introduced Lord Mayor Graham Quirk and Clare Boulter. Edited version of video taken by Mt Gravatt Historical Society.

Members of Mt Gravatt Historical Society with Lord Mayor Quirk & Cr Krista Adams

Quite spoken Clare has an amazing knowledge of our local European history. That knowledge is very valuable for understanding the changes that have occurred in the Reserve over the last hundred years. Knowledge of past land use helps in planning long-term restoration. For example, knowing that the forest was a timber reserve for railway building confirms our on-ground research that indicates average  tree age of around 100 years which explains the low incidence of nest hollows.

Second plaque with extracts from “Mt Gravatt Then & Now”

The second plaque with extracts from “Mt Then and Now” will be on display as well. Visit the Lookout look at the view over the city and port, read some history, go for a walk – keep an eye out for Koalas, then finish with a picnic or coffee at Echidna Magic.

By: Michael Fox

Our community speaks out against destructive mountain biking on Mt Gravatt:

Southern Star – 1 August 2012

Local Councilor Krista Adams has reconfirmed the Council’s long standing commitment to keeping Mt Gravatt Conservation Reserve free of mountain bike riding.

Letter of support – Whites Hill-Pine Mountain Community Group Inc.

BCC Local Area Services are providing strong on ground action – closing illegal tracks, mulching damaged areas and increasing their presence in the Reserve to catch riders still ignoring our community’s laws. Riders, who apparently could not see multiple signs saying “No Motor Bikes No Mountain Bikes”, have now been told very clearly that off road riding is illegal and subject to $500 fines.

We have also received emails and letters of support by community members and groups heartened by our action and the support we have received from Council.

We are proud of our community

Track exit beside No Mountain Bikes sign

and appreciate the recognition of our work however we know from past experience that illegal mountain bikers will be back fast if we, as a community, don’t stay alert.

As recently as Wednesday last week, National Tree Day, I found fresh bike tracks on in the area just down hill of the water reservoir. I was walking those tracks to document the erosion and tree root damage caused by mountain bikes.

New mountain bike bridge

These were not just tracks cleared through the bush, I even found a what looked like a fairly new timber bridge.

Mountain bike activity in that area has caused erosion up to half a metre deep in places and extensive root damage to mature Koala food trees.

What action can you take?

Illegal mountain biking can be reported to the BCC Call Centre 24/7 on 07 3403 8888

Please be careful about approaching riders by yourself. These riders are already acting illegally and we have had a number of reports recently of community members being subjected to aggressive and violent verbal abuse.

Track erosion






Roots damaged and under mined by erosion


Cr Krista Adams presenting Grant cheque

By: Michael Fox

An outstanding morning tea served in the Carson Room, Mt Gravatt Bowls Club, and politicians handing out grant cheques, no wonder everyone had a smile on their face. I can definitely recommend the morning tea if you are looking for a venue.

As part of their community focus Southside Sport & Community Club gives about $500,000 in grants each year. On behalf of Mt Gravatt Environment Group I received a grant cheque from Cr Krista Adams. The grant will be used to purchase specialised digital camera, iPad and nine metre aluminum pole to allow us to monitor nest boxes installed in wildlife corridors.

Pale-headed Rosella inspecting new Men’s Shed nest box

The nest boxes are made to our specifications by Mt Gravatt Men’s Shed and installed 6 to 8 metres in trees so checking to see who is occupying a box is a challenge. Monitoring is important to ensure they have not been occupied by feral species such as Indian Myna Acridotheres tristis and also provide research data on species restoration and movement through wildlife corridors.

Sharing our table were other grant recipients Wayne & Jennifer on behalf of Bulimba Creek Catchment Coordinating Committee (B4C), Maree – Xavier Children’s Support Network and Hanna – Mt Gravatt West C&K Childcare Centre.