Flowerdale is under attack! A number of pests and unwanted guests are upsetting the natural balance in our region and damaging the environment we interact with. Now is the time to take up arms against a sea of troubles. Take a stand and join your neighbours in pushing back the invasion. There are a few simple steps to start you off;
- Identify and gauge the extent of the problem
- Talk to you neighbours and make a combined effort for the greatest long term effect
- Seek advice on the best method and resources available to tackle the problem
- Record with your local Flowerdale Landcare your theatre of operation, objectives, tactics and successes.
- Evaluate and persist; the first attack is seldom decisive.
Flowerdale Landcare has already identified Cape Broom and Blackberry as pests that deserve particular attention over the long term along the King Parrot Creek in the Flowerdale region, but there are others-
Rabbits! Bunnies! Underground Mutton!
These celebrated Easter heroes are so ever – present, we seldom take much notice of them. When was the last time you assessed this problem. Recently, a total of 17 bunnies were observed stretched out baking in the sun on the roadside in front of our cottage. I decided it was time to bake these bunnies as a source of clean, lean protein. Just like an iceberg, what you see is only the tip. Over 4 sessions totalling 4 hours, 40 rabbits were harvested over a 1ha area. That is around 80 meals stored in the freezer, or shared and eaten fresh over the last week. Great bush tucker.
Reduction of rabbits of course means another animal in competition for food may take more of our small native animals. Fox control goes hand in hand with rabbit control. To this end the Upper Goulburn Landcare Network is running a free fox control workshop on the 22nd of November at the Kinglake Scout Hall. To attend this, please call Landcare Co-ordinator Chris Cobern on 0413 855 490.
Another browsing animal that have rapidly built up in numbers are the deer, both Sambar and Fallow. These species have been able to take advantage of the dense bushland vegetation that is a result of the 2009 fires. They are becoming increasingly evident, being observed in daylight as well as at night. The damage these animals are doing to saplings and seedlings is also quite evident. Establishing new plantations of native seedlings faces further challenge if deer are present. Deer are another fantastic resource of lean protein.
Control and harvesting of animals must be humane. and in accordance with regulations.
Blackberry Busting in Flowerdale is progressing well. Join with your neighbours in targeting this weed species which is taking over good grazing land, providing harbour for vermin an choking access to our Creek and bushland. In the last fortnight, 5 neighbouring properties made use of the 600 litre spray unit belonging to Flowerdale Landcare to tackle blackberry infestations. An area of just over 124 ha was dealt with. This too is only the tip of the iceberg and we encourage more Flowerdale residents to make use of the unit over the next 4 months. The best time to make a difference is now. Blackberry is just beginning to flower. Spraying now will prevent the canes from setting seed. Call 0412 334 521 for assistance.