Restoring landscapes across the Mount Alexander Region

The restoration of Taradale Landcare

Posted on 17 December, 2018 by Asha

If you read the Midland Express newspaper, you may have been enjoying Connecting Country’s monthly ‘Nature News’. This year we featured Landcare stories written by intern Sarah Edwards and local Landcarers. This week, the last of these ten stories was published in the paper, featuring this story written by Brian Bainbridge about the wonderful Taradale Landcare.

Taradale Landcare members at Barkly Park (Photo by Brian Bainbridge)

Taradale Landcare Group came together over twenty years ago over their shared passion for walking in the bush, managing the land, and learning about native flora and fauna. After many years of committed work, eventually the group lost momentum and folded in 2012.

Following a meeting to gauge interest, several prospective new members and a sprinkling of original members reformed Taradale Landcare in 2016.

Things started slowly with meetings and discussions to learn about the member’s priorities and interests- as well as conducting the ‘house-keeping’ needed to re-establish the group’s organisation and accounts. The Back Creek alongside the Mineral Springs Reserve near the centre of town has become a natural focus and base. The group has resurrected the work of the earlier group by treating weeds, uncovering the now maturing plantings, and replanting to fill in the gaps. In 2018, a Mt Alexander Shire Roadside weeds grant has encouraged the group to learn to coordinate and conduct sensitive weed control along the best roadside remnants, a process expected to continue for several years.

The group’s walks and talks encourage exploration by the many newly arrived residents of their adopted town’s historical sites including the Channel, Barkly Park, the Cemetery and the Quartz Battery, each with important ecological values that could be enhanced. This summer will see the group conduct seed collection (under permit) and propagation of wildflowers, grasses and trees- in consultation with the Cemetery trust.

A theme of the newly emerged group is to engage and have a presence at local gatherings while ensuring the group’s own events have a social as well as ecological outcome. Shared meals encourage the sharing of ideas to continue long after the ‘real’ work has ended.

If you are interested in being a part of Taradale Landcare Group or have any questions, email Colleen Jones at colfjones@yahoo.com.au or like the group’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/taradalelandcare/.

 

 

New climate change resource launched!

Posted on 7 November, 2018 by Asha

To complement Connecting Country’s recent ‘Future-proof your restoration‘ seminars, we’re pleased to launch a new three-part resource to support landholders and Landcare groups interested in learning more about adapting land management to a changing climate.

Part 1 – resource links: A new Useful resources page on our website added to our existing collection of pages on Biodiversity and Climate Change. The address for this web page is https://connectingcountry.org.au/education-resources/take-action/biodiversity-and-climate-change/future-proof-your-restoration-useful-resources/ Here you will find a series of links to download resources related to biodiversity and climate change in our region, including information on weed control, revegetation and planning. There are also links to download copies of the presentations from the ‘Weeds to Watch’ and ‘Planting for the Future’ seminars. If you would like hard copies of any of the linked resources, please email asha@connectingcountry.org.au

Part 2 – info summary: If you’d like a bite-sized version of some of the information linked to on the web page, you can CLICK HERE to download a document we’ve put together summarising interesting facts.

Part 3 – fact sheet: Connecting Country’s brand new ‘Future-proof your restoration’ fact sheet. CLICK HERE to download a copy, or drop into the office if you’d like some hard copies to hand out to your friends!

Thank you to the North Central Catchment Management Authority for funding this project through the Victorian Landcare Program, and to GreenGraphics for designing and printing the information sheet.

 

New brochure – Landcare in the Mount Alexander region

Posted on 1 November, 2018 by Asha

Did you know we have around 30 Landcare and Friends groups in the Mount Alexander region? This is potentially the highest density of groups in the whole of Victoria!

David, Rob, Asha, Sharon, Barry, and Ian at the Landcare Week stall at the Maldon Market (photo courtesy of the Tarrangower Times).

During September 2018, you may have spotted one of our five Landcare Week stalls on the streets of Castlemaine or at our local markets. Here we chatted with passers-by about the wonderful work Landcare groups do, and handed out brochures and other resources. These included the newest edition of the Landcare in the Mount Alexander region brochure.

The new brochure looks amazing, thanks to the hard work of Jane Satchell, one of Connecting Country’s landholders, who kindly volunteered her professional graphic design skills. In the brochure you will find information about what Landcare groups are all about, how you can get involved, a map showing all of our local groups, and contact details for each group.

CLICK HERE to download your very own copy, or drop into the office to pick one up.

Thanks to Jane for all her help with the brochure, and to the many generous volunteers who helped at the Landcare Week stalls.

 

Winners in our eyes

Posted on 24 October, 2018 by Asha

Landcare in the Mount Alexander region was well represented at the recent National Landcare Conference in Brisbane. Both Ian Higgins (Friends of Campbells Creek) and the Cactus Warriors (Tarrangower Cactus Control Group) were up for National Landcare Awards. Sadly neither were awarded first place, but we appreciate the incredible work they do for our community and environment regardless of a trophy! We thank them for all for their achievements and the hard work they continue to do.

The nominees put together videos in the lead up to the awards, which are worth checking out: CLICK HERE for the Cactus Warriors’ video and CLICK HERE for Ian Higgins’ video. Friends of Campbells Creek was also  featured recently on WIN news – CLICK HERE to view the clip. These videos showcase the amazing difference our local Landcare groups make. Please share them around if you can.

Both groups have events on this Sunday 28 October 2018, so you may have to make a hard choice!

For information:

  • On the Cactus Warriors last community field day for the year, CLICK HERE
  • On the Friends of Campbells Creek‘s next working bee, CLICK HERE 

Here are Ian Higgins and the Cactus Warriors enjoying the National Landcare Conference (photos by Asha Bannon).

 

 

Echidna presentation and Newstead Landcare AGM – 18 October 2018

Posted on 16 October, 2018 by Jacqui

Newstead Landcare is delighted to have Dr Kath Handasyde from The University of Melbourne to speak at their AGM at 8 pm this Thursday 18 October 2018 at Newstead Community Centre (9 Lyons St, Newstead VIC).

The AGM will be speedy then we can all enjoy Kath’s presentation about one of only two Australian egg-laying mammals – the Echidna.

Echidna photographed at Strangways by Patrick Kavanagh

Echidnas are our most widely distributed mammals, occurring in all regions of Australia. They are classified as myrmecophages, feeding extensively on social insects, such as ants and termites.

These are a rich and abundant food resource for which echidnas have clear adaptations, such as a long narrow snout, sticky tongue and powerful digging abilities. Echidnas are one of the relatively small number of Australian mammals that undergo hibernation.

Please come along to hear some more about these extraordinary animals in a presentation about their ecology and behaviour.

All welcome! A gold coin donation will be appreciated to help cover costs.

 

Woodland birds of central Victoria with Chris Tzaros – 13 October 2018

Posted on 9 October, 2018 by Asha

Axe Creek Landcare invites you to:

Working with Nature — conserving woodland birds with special guest, Chris Tzaros (Birds, bush and beyond)

  • Join Axe Creek Landcare for a visual extravaganza of award winning bird photography from wildlife ecologist Chris Tzaros.
  • Learn about the habitat requirements of our woodland birds, why some are endangered and what conservation actions you can do to reverse local declines.
  • Meet neighbours and people and network to develop ideas for future on-ground activities.
  • Join optional local field trip for those interested in learning more in the field.
  • Light lunch provided.


When:
Saturday 13 October 2018 from 10:00 am – 3:00 pm AEDT

Where: Emu Creek Hall, Cnr Emu Creek and Hargreaves Rd, Emu Creek (via Strathfieldsaye), VIC 3551

Bookings: click here

For more information please contact Adrian Martins on 0427 099 376.

 

National Waterbug Blitz Workshop

Posted on 27 September, 2018 by Asha

Help monitor the health of waterways in the Mt Alexander region!

North Central Waterwatch, Castlemaine Landcare Group and the Friends of Campbells Creek are working together to engage local community members in monitoring the health of Forest Creek, Barkers Creek and Campbells Creek in the Mt Alexander region. They will be providing an introduction to and training in water quality monitoring and waterbug assessments to those citizen scientists wishing to join the program.

Water quality monitoring looks at the temperature, turbidity, salinity, nutrient and pH levels of water, to helps us understand how conditions change over time. Waterbugs (or macroinvertebrates) are excellent indicators of river health and one way we can measure the success of remediation work over time.

Join these groups, together with John Gooderham (freshwater ecologist and co-author of ‘The Waterbug Book’) for this accredited workshop. You will learn the Agreed Level Taxonomy (ALT) macroinvertebrate method of identifying waterbugs and how to use water quality monitoring equipment. They will demonstrate how we can use this information to assess creek health, and show you how you can be a citizen scientist.

Each year North Central Waterwatch, in partnership with Castlemaine Landcare Group and the Friends of Campbells Creek, will release an Annual River Health Snapshot Report. The report will highlight changes in ecosystem health of these waterways using data collected by citizen scientists.

North Central Waterwatch is hosting a registration day and training session on Campbells Creek – please come along!

Campbells Creek – National Waterbug Blitz
When:
 Tuesday 16 October 2018 from 10.00 am – 2.30 pm
Where: Campbells Creek Swimming Pool Reserve, Midland Highway, Campbells Creek VIC (across the road from Beards Hardware). A map will be provided following registration.
Cost: Free event, lunch is provided.
To register: Click here or call 03 5448 7124
Bring: If you have them, bring gumboots or waders, waterbug ALT guide, magnifying glasses, camera and smart phone.

Download the Waterbug App from your App store prior to the event.

 

Water workshop with Muckleford Catchment Landcare

Posted on 18 September, 2018 by Asha

Let the rain run in, not off – an introduction to landscape function on a farm in transition

Join Muckleford Catchment Landcare at a workshop on how water functions in our landscape, presented by Muckleford landowner and ecologist, Paul Foreman, and land planning consultant, David Griffith.

Do you have cleared paddocks and want them to be more healthy and productive from both farm and conservation perspectives? Have these experts answer your questions about how you want your property to work.

Date: Sunday 23 September 2018
Time: 10 am to 12 noon
Location: Paul’s property at 678 Lewis Road, Muckleford VIC
Parking behind the house. Morning tea provided.

Please RSVP to Beth via email or call on 0431 219 980. 

 

Learn about landscape connectivity: science and practice

Posted on 18 September, 2018 by Asha

Newstead Landcare are hosting an interesting talk this Thursday.

Dr Jim Radford (Principal Research Fellow from the Research Centre for Future Landscapes, La Trobe University) will talk about the science and practice of connecting landscapes, what works and what we should be aiming for in landscape restoration projects.

Jim will focus on the benefits of revegetation in restoring rural landscapes, guiding principles for landscape restoration, and priorities and guidelines to improve landscape connectivity.

Landscape connectivity: science and practice
Venue: Newstead Community Centre, 9 Lyons Street Newstead VIC
Date: Thursday 20 Sept 2018
Time: 8 pm to 9 pm followed by supper

A gold coin donation would be appreciated to help cover costs.

 

‘Future-proof your restoration’ seminars

Posted on 6 September, 2018 by Tanya Loos

The recent ‘Future-proof your restoration’  seminars brought the local community together with relevant experts to discuss and share the issues we face in landscape restoration, especially the challenge of our changing climate. Seminar one (Friday 24 August 2018) explored ‘Weeds to watch’. Seminar two (Friday 31 August 2018) addressed ‘Planting for the future’.

Our excellent guest speakers shared a wealth of knowledge and experience, and their expertise was warmly received by an enthusiastic audience at both events.

Thank you to everyone who helped make these seminars successful, including our presenters, the Landcare Steering Group, and volunteers who helped behind the scenes. The seminars were funded by the North Central Catchment Management Authority, through the Victorian Landcare Program, and organised by Asha Bannon, Connecting Country’s Landcare Facilitator.

Everyone gathered to listen to our guests speak about ‘Weeds to watch’

Read on for short summaries of each event, and click on the presentation titles to download a copy of the slides. Keep an eye out for another blog post coming soon, with links to copies of the resources we had available at the events.

Weeds to watch

David started us off by talking about the ecology of weeds, and how they affect us and the environment. He gave useful advice about the most strategic ways to manage weeds effectively. David encouraged us to look at ‘absences’ of weeds on our properties and project areas, to learn to appreciate what we have achieved rather than be overwhelmed by the weeds we have yet to control. John then shared information about grassy weeds – those that are  a problem now, and those that are likely to become a bigger issue with climate change. He stressed the importance of early detection and eradication of new and emerging weeds, plus better practices to reduce their spread in the first place. For details see:

 

Planting for the future

The three presentations were very different and complemented each other beautifully! Jeroen spoke passionately about the urgent need for large-scale landscape restoration, based on his work on Bush Heritage properties in the Wedderburn and St Arnaud area – particularly the Nardoo Hills. Sacha clearly outlined a practical way to approach revegetation that buffers the changing climate, and uses scientific monitoring to guide us in that approach.  Brian took us down to the square metre level as he recounted the tale of the restoration of an urban waterway, and the return of bush birds such as Brown Thornbills to the Merri Creek. Brian also talked about the struggle many of us face when it comes to accepting and adapting to the new approaches needed to future-proof our restoration.

From left to right: Chris from Connecting Country, Jeroen, Sacha, Brian and Asha.

For details see:

 

Celebrate Landcare Month!

Posted on 30 August, 2018 by Asha

September 2018 is Landcare Month! With Spring here at last, it’s the perfect time to get outside, get your hands dirty, and connect with other community members. We have 30 groups in the Mount Alexander region alone, so it’s easy to find an event or working bee that’s near you and suits your interests.

Visit http://connectingcountry.org.au/events/ to find Landcare events happening near you in September, or contact asha@connectingcountry.org.au for more information.

Bonnie and Sutton Grange Landcarers admiring some Silver Banksias

 

Free training for Landcarers and friends

Posted on 28 August, 2018 by Asha

Connecting Country has funding to provide free training to our local Landcare and Friends groups, to arm them with some of the essential skills needed to continue their great work into the future. Priority will be given to current Landcare members. However, you’re also welcome to apply if you are volunteering in the environment space, doing conservation work on your land, or are potentially interested in joining a Landcare group.

The deadline to express your interest is this Friday 31 August 2018. CLICK HERE to download the expression of interest form.

This informative training is tailored to Landcarers needs, and will be presented clearly and concisely by an experienced trainer. Training will cover:

Governance

  • How to run an efficient, effective, and fun meeting.
  • How to achieve your group’s goals.
  • What are you responsible and liable for?

Finance essentials

  • How to manage your group’s finances, reports, and budget.
  • How to prepare invoices/tax invoices.
  • Understanding GST (for groups registered and not registered).
  • Using reports for decision-making.

First aid

Option of either:

  • Level II First Aid training (#HLTAID003 Provide First Aid).
  • CPR refresher course (#HLTAID001 Provide Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation).

If you have any questions, please email asha@connectingcountry.org.au or call 5472 1594 and ask for Asha.

 

FOBIF AGM: Monday 27 August 2018

Posted on 21 August, 2018 by Asha

Ian Higgins, well known local landcarer and co-founder of Friends of Campbells Creek Landcare, will be the speaker at the upcoming Friends of the Box-Ironbark Forests (FOBIF) AGM on Monday 27 August 2018.

In an article about Ian after he received the Australian Government Individual Landcarer Award in 2017, the Victorian Landcare Magazine wrote:

Higgins’ early interest in native plants has continued through his life. He developed a remarkable knowledge of indigenous flora species, their propagation and revegetation, leading to a 30-year professional career during which he has contributed significantly to revegetation and environmental planning in Victoria, in both professional and voluntary capacities.

You can find out about Ian’s history of involvement in environmental projects here.

Topics he will cover in his FOBIF speech will include:

  • Changes in our landscape and vegetation since colonisation, including the profound local impacts of gold mining and the consequences of a European mindset.
  • A short history of rehabilitation efforts, including the contribution of Landcare groups.
  • Is aiming for something more like the pre-European condition viable?  Given that we’ve already lost many components of the ecosystem, together with massive invasions of exotic species and climate change, what should our local landscape and vegetation management goals be?

The meeting will start at 7.30 pm in the Ray Bradfield Room, Castlemaine VIC (next to Mostyn Street IGA supermarket). Information on how to nominate for the FOBIF Committee can be found here. All welcome and supper will be served.

 

Monash Uni Students help fight our Cactus War

Posted on 20 August, 2018 by Asha

The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group (aka Cactus Warriors) sent us the following story to share: 

Last month a group of students from Monash University spent a few days in Maldon to help us wage the war on Wheel Cactus. This very enthusiastic group of students from Monash University Biological Society travelled here during their midyear holidays, and stayed for four days to inject and dig Wheel Cactus plants. They learnt about the negative impacts and challenges of environmental weeds and we scored some dead Wheel Cactus plants.

The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group sincerely thanks the North Central Catchment Management Authority for funding, and Ian Grenda for hosting and organising this project. The funding provided catering and accommodation for the students, as well as the equipment and herbicide that enabled them to contribute to our battle.

Our next Community Field Day is on Sunday 26 August, starting at 10:30 am. Come and join us for a morning in the fresh air and learn how best to destroy Wheel Cactus. The location this month is in Mount Back Rd, Tarrengower, Victoria. The route will be signposted from Watersons Rd and South Parkins Reef Rd. The morning’s activities end with a delicious BBQ lunch and friendly chat. The event is family friendly but children must be accompanied by a parent at all times. If you have any queries please contact us via our website at www.cactuswarriors.org

 

A watery Landcare Link-up

Posted on 8 August, 2018 by Asha

It was a dark and stormy night when Landcarers from around the region gathered in Campbells Creek. Our guest speakers included Trent Gibson (North Central Catchment Management Authority), Barry Floyd (Coliban Water), Brett Thompson (Coliban Water) and Mark Bailey (Goulburn Murray Water).

Trent started us off by talking about some of North Central CMA‘s current local projects. You can CLICK HERE to download his full presentation (2 Mb). Among other things, he talked about the new Castlemaine Creekways Management Plan developed by Mount Alexander Shire in partnership with Friends of Campbells Creek and Castlemaine Landcare Group.

Next we heard from Barry and Brent from Coliban Water, each covering different aspects of their work. They encouraged groups to keep an open mind about where partnerships can come from, and to consider the public health benefits of Landcare work and ways to partner with Coliban Water-funded projects.

Mark from Goulburn Murray Water (GMW) finished the event. He explained that GMW covers an area the size of Tasmania, and encouraged groups to have a look at the plans on the GMW website. During question time, Mark also directed us to the interactive map on the Visualising Victoria’s Groundwater website.

One of the big takeaways from the night was that water management is a complex issue, and we merely scraped the surface in this jam-packed evening. All four speakers stressed their support for government-community partnerships, and an interest in working with more Landcare groups. Speakers emphasised that the way our waterways are managed has changed significantly in the last 30 years, and we need to continue to adapt with the changing climate.

Thank you to all of our guest speakers, and to the representatives from eleven Landcare and Friends groups who came along and contributed to the discussion. Thanks also to the volunteers who helped plan and implement the Link-up, included the Landcare Steering Group, and Daryl for picking up our soup!

Beautiful Baker’s Swamp, by Geoff Park

 

 

‘Future-proof your restoration’ seminars

Posted on 7 August, 2018 by Asha

Golden Wattle, by Tanya Loos

Come along and learn about how we can prepare our environment for a changing climate at two upcoming seminars. This is a chance to hear from experts in the field, share ideas, and browse through useful resources.

We have some truly amazing guest speakers lined up to talk about topics that are relevant to Landcare groups and landholders working to restore their land for the environment.

SEMINAR 1: WEEDS TO WATCH

Guest speakers:

  • David Cheal – ‘Weed attack strategies and plans’
  • John Morgan (LaTrobe University) – ‘Perennial grass weeds that will threaten nature’

When: Friday 24 August 2018, 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Where: Campbells Creek Community Centre, 45 Elizabeth St, Campbells Creek VIC

RSVP: by Monday 20 August for catering purposes to asha@connectingcountry.org.au

SEMINAR 2: PLANTING FOR THE FUTURE

Guest speakers:

  • Jeroen VanVeen (Bush Heritage) – ‘Woodland stress: signs of times to come?’
  • Sacha Jellinek (Greening Australia) – ‘Developing guidelines for Climate Future Plots in Victoria’
  • Brian Bainbridge – ‘Taking actions from modelling to reality’

When: Friday 31 August 2018, 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm

Where: Campbells Creek Community Centre, 45 Elizabeth St, Campbells Creek VIC

RSVP: by Monday 27 August for catering purposes to asha@connectingcountry.org.au

CLICK HERE to download the flier, or contact Asha on (03) 5472 1594 or at asha@connectingcountry.org.au for more information.

This event is funded by the North Central Catchment Management Authority, through the Victorian Landcare Program.

 

AGM in the bush – Golden Point Landcare

Posted on 2 August, 2018 by Asha

This is how you do an AGM! Join Golden Point Landcare for their hands-on outdoor AGM, and be treated to a gift  to take home as well (a free indigenous plant). Everyone is welcome to come for all or part of their AGM this Sunday 5th August, with cutting and painting of gorse at 10am, morning tea in the bush at 11am, and “pick a present” at 11:30am.

Park at the Chapel/Welsh Street corner in Golden Point. BYO secateurs and gloves. Dabbers and herbicide will be provided.

Contact Jennifer on 0423 900 590 to RSVP for catering or for more info. CLICK HERE to download the flier.

 

Vote for our local Landcarers in the National Landcare Awards

Posted on 2 August, 2018 by Asha

How amazing is this?! We have two local finalists for the National Landcare Awards.

The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group is the Victorian finalist in the National Landcare Community Group Award and Ian Higgins is the Victorian finalist for the Australian Government Individual Landcarer Award.

Please CLICK HERE to go to the link and vote for our locals in the awards to give them the recognition we know they deserve! Voting closes October 10th 2018. 

The award will be presented at the National Landcare conference in Brisbane in early October.

Ian Higgins explains EVCs, April 2014

Some of the Cactus Control Group accepting their Victorian Landcare award in 2017.

 

Free disposal of Wheel Cactus at Maldon Transfer Station

Posted on 21 June, 2018 by Asha

The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group (aka Cactus Warriors) has asked us to distribute the following message: 

Thanks to ongoing funding from Mount Alexander Shire Council, Wheel Cactus plants can be disposed of FREE at the Maldon Transfer Station. This is a fantastic incentive to dig up Wheel Cactus plants while they’re still small and before they’ve started producing fruit, and more seeds. It also means less herbicide chemicals have to be paid for and used.

Dig up small Wheel Cactus plants and dispose of them FREE at the Maldon Tip

Another reminder, if you have any injector guns that are clogged up, no longer working and sitting idle in the shed, please return them to us for repair. Our ‘injector fairies’ love fiddling with the bits and are happy to swap them for a working model. You can bring the old injectors to our next field day or call or text ‘fairy Jan’ on 0400 973 528.

Our next Community Field Day is on Sunday 24 June, starting at 10:30 am. Come and join us for a morning in the fresh air and learn how best to destroy Wheel Cactus. The location this month is in Lakey’s Road, Shelbourne, along the old railway line, about 12 km north of Maldon. To get there, follow Bridgewater Road out of Maldon, turn right at the prison and follow Maldon-Shelbourne Rd. until the end of the sealed road, then turn left into Lakey’s Rd. The route will be well signposted. The morning’s activities end with a delicious BBQ lunch and friendly chat. The event is family friendly but children must be accompanied by a parent at all times. If you have any queries please contact us via our website at www.cactuswarriors.org

 

Camp Out on the Mount 2018 (minus the camp out)

Posted on 30 May, 2018 by Asha

Success! After one and a half Camp Outs cancelled due to severe weather warnings, we were at last able to run most of the activities we had planned on Saturday 12 May.

It was a chilly  day, but a warm fire provided by Parks Victoria created a cozy space to gather. Early birds Duncan and Frances were up on the mount before anyone else making sure the kettle was going and we had hot drinks available all day long.

We kicked off the day with a nature walk with Connecting Country’s Bonnie Humphreys. Before even leaving the campground, we were lucky to see both Scarlet and Flame Robins enjoying the sun that peeked through the clouds. We came back in time to listen to George Milford’s famous talk on the history of Mount Alexander.

MP Maree Edwards then launched the new Camp Out on the Mount 2018 t-shirt with Nick and Murray from Castlemaine Secondary College, who designed the t-shirts with fellow students Nioka and Des. There are a limited number of free Camp Out on the Mount 2018 t-shirts left in sizes XS, L, and XL. If you would like one, please email asha@connectingcountry.org.au or drop into our office.

Next up was something a little different from the Little Habitat Heroes and the Macapellas. After treating us to their rendition of Eva Popov’s ‘Seeds that grow’ (song written about the Little Habitat Heroes revegetation project on Leanganook) they invited everyone to join in singing around the campfire.

Our afternoon activities were a wildlife display by TZR Reptiles and Wildlife, and a Leanganook Scavenger Hunt run by Nioka, Nick, and Murray. The wildlife display went down a treat, with the Carpet Python and Barn Owl being special favourites (as you can see from the smiles in the photos below!) The scavenger hunt was challenging and fun, with bonus points for those who came up with a name for their Landcare Superhero Team!

As a perfect finish to the day, the Mellick-Cooper family set up a damper making station and got everyone cooking damper over the coals, which were now glowing and ideal for this purpose.

So many people helped make this event possible, we almost need a whole other blog post dedicated to thank yous! We have many community groups and individuals to thank for making the 2018 Camp Out happen, both on the day and behind the scenes, including the Camp Out Advisory Group, Harcourt Valley Landcare, Little Habitat Heroes, MP Maree Edwards, the Mellick-Cooper family, Parks Victoria, Friends of the Box-Ironbark Forests, Nalderun Upper Loddon Group, Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation, Castlemaine Secondary College students (Nioka, Nick, Murray, and Des), Harcourt Lions Club, Tarrangower Cactus Control Group, TZR Reptiles and Wildlife, the Connecting Country team, and all those who stepped up to help out on the day.

Scroll through to enjoy a gallery of photos from the day.

This year’s Camp Out on the Mount is supported by funding through the Victorian Landcare Program. Our nature walk was supported by DELWP’s Biodiversity On Ground Action (BOGA) program.