Restoring landscapes across the Mount Alexander Region

Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change visits landholders in Green Hill

Posted on 14 March, 2018 by Tanya Loos

On Friday 9 March, Lily D’Ambrosio MP visited one of our land restoration sites in Green Hill, south of Metcalfe. The Minister had just opened the La Larr Ba Gauwa Park, and wanted to see the work we’re doing locally to protect threatened woodland birds, with funding from the Victorian Government’s Regional Landscapes & Targeted Action initiative.

Landholders Rayleen Bailey and Huntly Barton hosted the visit to their beautiful 273 hectare property. With representatives from Connecting Country, Trust for Nature, Department of Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), and the Minister’s team, it was quite a crowd on the quiet country lane! Huntly kindly offered to take the Minister to the top of Green Hill, where eagles nest, to view the incredible progress with weed control, fencing and revegetation. We all had a chat while Huntly and the Minister zoomed off into the distance in the all-terrain vehicle!

Kirsten Hutchison from Trust for Nature was happy to be there as the property will be placed under a covenant for long-term protection. Kirsten explains why the property is so significant:

This covenant (265 ha) is of high conservation significance as it contains ‘Greenhill’, a Scoria Cone (dormant volcano) of notable geological significance. Greenhill is a prominent landmark in the local landscape. The property contains two threatened ecological vegetation classes that are under-represented in the National Reserve System; Plains Grassy Woodland and Scoria Cone Woodland. Both are endangered in the Goldfields and Central Victorian Uplands Bioregions. The remnant native vegetation on the property also contains numerous very large old hollow eucalyptus trees that provide important habitat for local fauna species. The nationally endangered Matted Flax-lily Dianella amoena has been found on the property.

Previously Connecting Country have funded extensive weed control work and additional re-vegetation on the property through their on-ground works programs. The covenant has been funded through DELWP’s Biodiversity On Ground Action (BOGA) program.’

The property also hosts one of Connecting Country’s long-term bird monitoring sites. It is one of few River Red Gum woodland sites with good understorey vegetation, and significant for its records of Brown Treecreeper, Dusky Woodswallow and Restless Flycatcher. After the Minister departed, Tanya, Kirsten and Frances enjoyed doing a bird survey, recording breeding Dusky Woodswallows and numerous other species.

Many thanks to Jill Fleming from DELWP for the invitation, Minister Lily D’Ambrosio and team for visiting, and most of all Rayleen and Huntly for their warmth and willingness to share their property with us.

Please enjoy this gallery of photos taken by Tanya Loos, Frances Howe and Kirsten Hutchison.


Sharing Landcare Stories – February 2018 Landcare Link-up

Posted on 8 March, 2018 by Asha

For anyone seeking inspiration, there was plenty to be had at the Campbells Creek Community Centre last Monday. We had a great turnout of nearly 40 people representing 14 of our local Landcare and Friends groups, plus representatives from North Central Catchment Management Authority, Mount Alexander Shire Council, Parks Victoria, and Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning. The event focused on groups sharing the work they’ve been doing for the last year or so. Based on some great feedback, we may be making this an annual theme!

Talks spanned the huge range of the amazing work local groups do, including weed control, planting, monitoring, promoting sustainable agriculture, advocating for our environment, preserving heritage, holding education events, installing signage and engaging community.

Landcare and Friends groups who presented included: Baringhup Landcare, Castlemaine Landcare, Friends of Campbells Creek Landcare, Golden Point Landcare, Guildford and Upper Loddon Landcare, Friends of Kalimna Park, Maldon Urban Landcare Group, Muckleford Catchment Landcare, North Harcourt-Sedgewick Landcare, Nuggetty Land Protection Group, Post Office Hill Action Group, and Taradale Landare. The Tarrangower Cactus Control Group also celebrated the launch of their new brochure, Weeds and your responsibilities (CLICK HERE for more info), with guest speaker Mayor Bronwen Machin.

Thank you to everyone who came along to our February Landcare Link-up and made it an enjoyable night. An extra special thanks goes to all our presenters, the wonderful volunteers who helped with setting up, packing up and doing dishes, and to Bonnie and Vivien for your photos (scroll the gallery below!).



Camp Out on the Mount 2018

Posted on 8 March, 2018 by Asha

The sun rising on Leanganook on the Sunday morning of the 2017 Camp Out on the Mount

Have you ever camped out on Leanganook (Mount Alexander)? This is your chance to camp out in a fun community setting, learn about nature and cultural heritage in our area, and water some young native plants that need care after a dry summer. We are once again working with several community groups to run the popular Camp Out on the Mount, a weekend event for people of all ages.

Please join us for a morning working bee on the Saturday, followed by an afternoon of activities to learn more about our environment and Aboriginal culture. Share in dinner, chatting and singing around the campfire, a heritage talk from George Milford, and a night walk in the bush with Parks Victoria. On the Sunday morning we will also be treated to a nature walk with Tanya Loos. Together, we will be caring for and learning about Leanganook, and celebrating the work that Landcare and Friends groups do for our environment all year round.

A huge thank you is due to the many community groups who are coming together to make this event so special. These include: the Camp Out Advisory Group, Harcourt Valley Landcare, Little Habitat Heroes, Parks Victoria, Friends of the Box-Ironbark Forests, Nalderun Upper Loddon Group, Dja Dja Wurrung Clans Aboriginal Corporation, Castlemaine Secondary College students, Harcourt Lions Club, and Connecting Country.

CLICK HERE to visit the booking website

CLICK HERE to download the flier

CLICK HERE to read the blog post about last year’s Camp Out on the Mount

When: Saturday 14th – Sunday 15th April 2018
Where: Leanganook Camping Ground, Joseph Young Drive, Mount Alexander Regional Park, Faraday
What to bring: Camping gear, food (Lions Club BBQ will be available on Sat night for a gold coin donation), weather appropriate clothes, sturdy shoes and sun protection. Please bring a bucket to the working bee if you can, this will help us water as many plants as possible!

Below is a run-down of the 2018 Camp Out weekend. You are more than welcome to attend some or all of the activities. Please let us know through the booking website which activities you plan to attend, as this will help us get an idea of how many people to expect.

If you have any questions, please call Asha on (03) 5472 1594 or email

This year’s Camp Out on the Mount is supported by funding through the Victorian Landcare Program.