Restoring landscapes across the Mount Alexander Region

Nestbox workshop – a sweet success!

Posted on 17 May, 2018 by Tanya Loos

Connecting Country’s Nestboxes for Wildlife workshop on Sunday 6 May 2018 was blessed with fine weather, a great presenter, and sightings of a little sugar glider family via our special nestbox camera. The workshop was held at a local Trust for Nature property owned by Jan Hall, a long-time Connecting Country friend and supporter. Jan kindly opened her home so we could view a presentation inside, and enjoy an al fresco lunch under the grapevines.

Our presenter, Miles Geldard, has had a long career in natural resource management, including working as a Land for Wildlife Officer and park ranger. But most relevant for us, Miles shared his in-depth understanding of the design, construction, installation and maintenance of nestboxes, gained over many years of observation and trail-and-error.

Information from Miles’ presentation will be summarised and made available as a fact sheet on our website.

Here is some of the wonderful feedback we received following the workshop:

  • ‘Loved the day. Will inspire us to put some boxes up on our 7.5 acres.’
  • ‘The finer points from Miles’ experience were very helpful.’
  • ‘Loved the ad hoc discussion in the field of what’s happening with the boxes. Damage, placement, etc.’
  • ‘Learnt new things about nesting boxes (been making them for thirty years).’

This workshop was very popular and was fully booked. Therefore we are holding a repeat workshop on Sunday 17 June 2018. Bookings are essential. If you would like to attend, please contact us by email (tanya@connectingcountry.org.au) or phone (5472 1594).

Many thanks to Miles, Jan, Asha, Frances and Duncan for their help on the day! And many thanks to the Wettenhall Environment Trust for the funding that made this workshop possible.
Please enjoy this gallery of photos from the afternoon.

 

 

 

 

Caught on camera!

Posted on 10 May, 2018 by Tanya Loos

This remarkable photograph shows a Yellow-footed Antechinus bounding up a log with an Australian Magpie in hot pursuit. It was taken by a trail camera – amazing timing!

In this case, the antechinus escaped being breakfast, running so fast all of its paws are in the air! It is great to see the tables turned on these adorable but voracious hunters (see pictures of a Yellow-footed Antechinus preying upon a grey fantail here).

The landholders who sent us the photo said  ‘These wildlife cameras are great! We catch so much and are able to watch so many different animals, birds, reptiles, insects, etc.  and what they get up to each day.’ Lynne and Ric live on a beautiful woodland property east of Maldon, and are keen bird surveyors.

If you would like to see what lives on your property, why not borrow a wildlife camera from us? We are happy to loan wildlife cameras to our members – usually for a three week period. To book one, email tanya@connectingcountry.org.au or phone us at the office on 5472 1594.

Many thanks to Lynne and Ric for the amazing photo.

 

Wattle book launch – Saturday 28 April 2018

Posted on 23 April, 2018 by Frances

Acacia, known in Australia as wattle, is the largest genus of plants in the country — nearly 1,000 species! Its brilliant flowers transform winter and spring landscapes. But how many wattle species can the average citizen name and recognise?

A new 112 page wattle guide helps the beginner to make a start. In plain language, and generously illustrated, it presents 21 species which flourish in the Mount Alexander region of central Victoria. A general introduction explains different features of wattles, helping identification and appreciation of these tenacious and beautiful plants.

The book is published by Friends of the Box-Ironbark Forests (FOBIF) in association with Castlemaine Field Naturalists Club and Connecting Country. The authors are Bernard Slattery, Ern Perkins and Bronwyn Silver.

George Broadway (President, Castlemaine Field Naturalists Club) will launch the book on Saturday 28 April 2018 from 11 am in the Phee Broadway Theatre Foyer, Mechanics Lane, Castlemaine.

Everyone is welcome, refreshments will be served and copies of the book will be available. For further information, please contact FOBIF. If you can’t make the launch, the book will be available from Stoneman’s Bookroom from 28 April, and online from the FOBIF website. Cost is $10.

Here are images of the cover and some sample example pages on one of our favourite prickly plants, Spreading Wattle (clikc arrow to scroll through):