- 21 community grants totalling $2,035,906
- 25 government grants totalling $2,016,302.
Environmental Restoration and Rehabilitation 2018 grants awarded and project summaries
In the 2018 round the Environmental Trust approved 46 grants totalling $4,052,208.
Rivers of Carbon Upper Murrumbidgee – phase 2 – $99,550
Rivers of Carbon – Upper Murrumbidgee phase 1 was completed in mid-2017, with 12,200 plants connecting 13 sites, enhancing biodiversity and stabilising streambanks in the Bumbalong Valley. Phase 2 of the project seeks to extend works on three of the existing sites, and establish 3 new sites to restore ecosystem function over 16 hectares of instream and riparian habitat. Improved instream and riparian connectivity, water quality, biodiversity and bank stability, as well as continuing the growth of community capacity and wellbeing, are key outcomes of this project.
Upper Bellinger River aquatic and terrestrial habitat connections – $100,000
This project will take a reach based adaptive management approach to improve the condition of the riparian zone along the upper Bellinger River adjacent to the New England National Park and Bellinger River Nature Reserve. Improved riparian habitat will support the recovery of the Bellinger River Snapping Turtle and a number of other threatened species in the area. The project sites link remnants of Subtropical Rainforest Endangered Ecological Community. The project will encourage landholders to better manage stock and undertake bush regeneration activities to encourage natural regeneration. Regeneration works will be supplemented by planting where required.
Restoring critically endangered lowland subtropical rainforest – $99,998
This project continues a long-term multi-partner program led by Big Scrub Landcare to rehabilitate and provide ongoing management of remnants of critically endangered lowland subtropical rainforest in the Big Scrub. This area is part of the Border Ranges National Biodiversity hotspot. The project will re-establish lowland subtropical rainforest on land from which it has been cleared, enhance connectivity across the Big Scrub landscape, and engage with and educate landholders and the community about lowland subtropical rainforest and its restoration. On-ground work is the major activity and will involve strategic control of weeds and monitoring of vegetation condition and weed control outcomes.
Brunswick Valley Landcare Inc: Broken Head Landcare locality group – $99,970
This project builds on previous works by Brunswick Valley Landcare to extend and improve the condition and connectivity of a critical corridor link in Byron Shire by connecting high biodiversity areas of Broken Head, which contain threatened flora and fauna habitat, endangered floodplain and rainforest ecological communities, freshwater wetlands and waterways. Eight landholders will be involved in undertaking 40 hectares of restoration works on their properties, including weed control. Two hectares of creek line restoration works will be undertaken linking an isolated remnant of rainforest with other areas of remnant vegetation. The project expands and supplements previous restoration work over 59 hectares, completed in 2017.
Linking and enhancing rocky outcrops - critical refugia for diversity in the Central Tablelands – $94,561
The Central Tablelands Landcare's rocky outcrops project builds on a series of strategic revegetation projects delivered over the past 7 years. The project focuses on protecting and enhancing local rocky outcrops to ensure these important refugia are connected to local regional wildlife corridors. The project will protect 15 hectares of rocky outcrops with wildlife friendly fences and undertake revegetation to maintain thermally suitable environments for reptiles. Central Tablelands Landcare will engage 15 landholders in this project. Each project site will be a minimum of 1 hectare and will be linked to regional wildlife corridors via 'stepping stones' of paddock trees, remnant vegetation or reserves. A series of workshops will be delivered to promote the ecological value and management requirements of rocky outcrops and the important role they play as critical refugia for local biodiversity.
Maintaining momentum and bridging the gaps on the HCVAE (high conservation value aquatic ecosystems) Deua River – $99,647
Deua Rivercare is partnering with landholders and agencies along the Deua River to expand its cross tenure invasive species control project along this high conservation value aquatic ecosystem. The project will expand the weed control work along the river to an additional 67 hectares of high priority riparian lands. This will be achieved through education, individual and tailored landholder assistance packages, on-ground weed and pest animal control, site tours from local TAFE and community groups, and comprehensive and updated mapping.
Dundundra Falls Reserve – ecological rehabilitation and restoration – stage 3 – $77,505.00
This is the third stage of a broader project that seeks to protect and regenerate native vegetation and fauna habitat that make up the Kierans, Terreys and Neverfail Creeks sub-catchments. This stage of the project will focus on the protection of bushland affected by urban impact and the management of weed sources to reduce their impact on biodiversity.
Dundundra Falls Reserve provides stable habitat for 2 endangered ecological communities, 5 rare and threatened Australian plant species, and 5 threatened fauna species. Project activities include weed control, protection of new plants against wallaby grazing, direct seeding in low resilience areas, and planting of local species beneficial to eastern pigmy possum such as Banksia ericifolia and Callistemon, as well as reducing stormwater nutrient levels.
Working with the community to create greater connectivity for koalas on Lismore floodplain – $100,000
This project focuses on strengthening partnerships with land managers, Landcare and local government as well as increasing community capacity and awareness, specifically targeting the rural sector. Professional bush regenerators will be engaged to restore the conservation values of riparian vegetation and expand and strengthen koala habitat, corridors and linkages. Riparian corridors on the Wilson River floodplain will be restored and landowners will plant paddock trees to reduce threats to koalas. Restoration work seeks to strengthen koala migration pathways and create fauna refuges for other species while re-establishing linear corridors that facilitate movement. Woody weeds, specifically coral tree, will be replaced with koala food trees and endemic lowland subtropical rainforest species.
Restoring biodiversity and on farm habitat – Glen Innes – $99,330
This project will increase the amount of available native habitat through planting more than 19,000 native trees and shrubs on 12 privately managed farming properties across the Glen Innes district. The 35 project sites will plant species from 2 threatened ecological communities i.e., New England Peppermint grassy woodlands and White Box-Yellow Box-Blakely's Red Gum grassy woodlands. These new plantings will assist in providing habitat for flora and fauna species across a highly fragmented landscape.
One paddock at a time – practical solutions to restore critical woodland habitat on farms – $100,000
This project addresses this fundamental barrier to large-scale restoration on private land by demonstrating a model of revegetation that strategically plants native trees and shrubs across 25% of an existing paddock with no net loss of land available for production in the long term. Each project site of 10 to 30 hectares (100ha in total) consists of bands of dense shrubby habitat providing shelter, food and nesting opportunities for threatened woodland birds such as superb parrots, diamond firetails, hooded robins and scarlet robins, while deterring hyper-aggressive noisy miners within the endangered ecological communities of Yellow Box-Blakely's Red Gum and Tablelands Snow Gum woodlands.
Restoring woodlands at scale in the Riverina for superb parrots and other threatened birds – $100,000
In the Riverina bioregion, the largest intact stretch of native vegetation follows the Murrumbidgee River corridor and associated streams and includes a large population of superb parrots. This project will improve the habitat connectivity, extent and structural diversity of the river corridors. Habitat enhancement will be achieved by direct seeding and planting a suite of endemic native trees and shrubs on over 200 hectares of public land in the Murrumbidgee Valley National Park precinct. The establishment of wattles, hop bush and salt bushes will improve the food resources available for superb parrots, particularly during the important breeding season. Activities will be focused on the areas adjacent to the river and on the endangered ecological community of Sandhill Pine woodlands.
Enhancing endangered ecological communities and endangered species habitat in the riparian zone of the Orara River – $100,000
The Orara River Rehabilitation Project has been restoring riparian rainforest habitats for 20 years. This project will target newer properties and those needing further on ground works to regenerate lowland rainforest on floodplain, an endangered ecological community in the NSW North Coast Bioregion which includes habitat for the endangered giant barred frog (Mixophyes iteratus). Works will be undertaken in the riparian corridors along the Orara River, Urumbilum River, Bucca Bucca Creek and their tributaries. The works will complement previous project works undertaken by the group on adjoining properties to connect rehabilitated riparian areas in the Orara Valley. The works primarily target weed control, encourage natural regeneration, exclusion of livestock, and engage landholders in training and rehabilitation works.
Restoration of lowland rainforest and swamp sclerophyll forest on floodplain – $100,000
Two endangered ecosystems on the floodplain of Ourimbah Creek, lowland rainforest and the adjacent sclerophyll swamp forest, will be targeted for remediation action by the Landcare group. They will work towards removing woody weeds, promoting natural regeneration and by planting native species. The group will restore rainforest in high-nutrient areas and sclerophyll forest in swampy and less fertile areas. Regenerating species, such as alphitonia and swamp mahogany, will be protected with relocatable fencing. Fauna boxes will be placed in restored forest areas. The work will further diversify habitat on a site that is home for more than 120 bird species and 13 frog species.
Tackling fragmentation through 'stepping-stone' habitat connections for squirrel gliders – $99,960
This project adds value to the Local Area Management Plan to secure squirrel glider in Burrumbuttock by creating targeted ‘stepping-stone’ habitat across the landscape to ensure populations remain connected by eliminating gaps between habitat patches and linear remnants. On-ground works will include bush regeneration in Grassy Box Gum woodland, stock-exclusion fencing and creating new habitat through revegetation.
Restoration of small keystone features in the Riverina Highlands landscape – $99,980
In a relatively cleared landscape, the Riverina Highlands comprises a number of small keystone natural features with high ecological importance. This project will seek to protect, restore and reinstate more than 30 hectares of small keystone features to create a series of biodiversity stepping stones across the landscape. A key component of the project will focus on educating landholders and the wider community of the significance of these features in a heavily cleared landscape. The project hopes to influence how landholders value these features on their farms. The project enables researchers, stakeholders and farmers to work together to implement integrated actions to improve ecological function across the Riverina Highlands landscape.
Protection of littoral rainforest by removal of invasive weeds around South West Rocks – $98,648
This project focuses on the removal of highly invasive and difficult to control weed species that have emerged in the dunal areas of South West Rocks after the removal of bitou bush, lantana and other primary weed species. The project targets glory lily, asparagus and turkey rhubarb both of which are difficult to control. The project also seeks to protect and stabilise several areas of littoral rainforest, endangered Acronychia litoralis habitat and includes work in 10 hectares of previously untreated dunes.
Putty Creek restoration – $99,827
The Putty and Gibbs Creek valley floors have been cleared and riverbanks damaged as a result of historic agricultural land use and uncontrolled grazing. The native vegetation communities are subject to degradation by exotic vegetation including blackberry (WoNS), privet, robinia, and tree of heaven. Loss of native vegetation and subsequent erosion in Putty Creek contributes contaminated sediment to the downstream World Heritage area during rainfall events. Three Valleys Landcare Group aims to restore a 2.3km section of riparian zone of Putty Creek through weed control, fencing of riparian areas and selective revegetation. Seed collection and propagation will take place in the community nursery set up for the Landcare community. Community capacity building through workshops and working bees will also be an essential component of the project.
Filling biodiversity gaps connecting Tweed Coast to Border Ranges – stage 4 – $100,000
This is stage 4 of the Filling Biodiversity Gaps project. The project aims to improve and protect high conservation value vegetation to connect habitat for a diversity of flora and fauna, including threatened species, within Tweed Shire. Properties are selected for this project based on their location within a fauna/climate change corridor or having linkages to national parks estate with engaged and supportive landholders. The project builds on the ongoing Northern Corridors Connection program that commenced in 2009 and strengthens partnership between the North Coast Local Lands Services, National Parks and Wildlife Service, Tweed Shire Council, Tweed Landcare Inc. and the community. Training and awareness raising activities undertaken as part of this project will increase landholder skills to manage habitat on their properties and enhance the broader community understanding of the importance of landscape connectivity.
Mid Oxley River riparian restoration and connectivity – stage 2 – $100,000
This is the second stage of the Mid Oxley River riparian restoration and connectivity project. Five new landholders have been engaged to undertake riparian restoration works on their properties to fill gaps between the properties involved in stage 1 of this project. Stage 2 will expand the area of rehabilitation downstream. The riparian remnants on these properties have many threatened species, including onion cedar, small-leaved tamarind, thorny pea and durobby. These remnants are threatened by invasive environmental weeds including cat's claw creeper. Restoration of these sites will further improve the extent, condition and connectivity of native vegetation along the Oxley River.
Restoring trees to the Monaro – $99,900
In this project, the Upper Snowy Landcare Network will expand on its work to address the problem of tree dieback on the Monaro. Project activities will include the planting of 6000 native trees and shrubs, monitoring of their survival and growth over the first 3 years, systematic trials of different planting methodologies to improve success rates and engagement with landholders to promote the uptake of successful planting strategies. The project will help to protect the endangered ecological community Tablelands Snow Gum grassy woodland, restore biodiversity to working farms and improve landscape connectivity in the south-east corner of the State.
Expanding pouched frog habitat in the Rocky Creek catchment – stage 1 – $67,030
Whian Whian Landcare will undertake the rehabilitation of a 6.2km reach of Rocky Creek commencing from its border with Nightcap National Park to the Whian Whian Falls. This is stage 1 of the project where 5 hectares of riparian zone, across 4 properties, will be treated for invasive weeds and regeneration of native vegetation diversity and resilience will be encouraged. The project also supports expansion of subtropical rainforest and habitat for the threatened pouched frog (Assa darlintoni). Building the knowledge and capacity of the community to undertake ongoing maintenance of project areas and foster broader adoption of restoration activities across the catchment is also an outcome for the project.
Regenerating Big Scrub Lowland Rainforest and restoring healthy riparian corridors – $95,358
This project will restore 6 hectares of nationally threatened Lowland Subtropical Rainforest endangered ecological community through revegetation with 9000 native locally endemic tubestock. The project also seeks to connect existing riparian remnants along creeks and gullies and improve habitat for locally significant populations of the nationally threatened koala. The project will be undertaken in partnership with local landholders and community volunteers. Project activities will include development of site plans for each site, targeted weed control and plantings, stock exclusion fencing to protect new plantings and riparian areas, and community workshops.
Rehabilitation of the Macquarie River riparian corridor – $77,470
This project will rehabilitate 1 kilometre of riparian land along the Macquarie River to connect previously completed riparian rehabilitation projects and existing habitat areas. The Macquarie River in Bathurst is generally in poor condition – as early as 1824 there are accounts of the fringing vegetation being wholly European plants with the original river she-oaks having been removed. On-ground works will include weed control, riverbank revegetation with native riparian species, and the linking of habitat to provide wildlife corridors. These activities will provide additional, enhanced and connected habitat for native aquatic and terrestrial species. The project will actively involve local fishing groups and the community in planting and field day events to increase awareness of the importance of riparian vegetation, river health and stewardship of the great asset that runs through Bathurst.
Merimbula Lake foreshore connections – Lake Street Foreshore Reserve restoration project – $71,180
Lake Street Foreshore Reserve is situated on the shores of iconic Merimbula Lake, a key natural asset for the popular tourist town of Merimbula in the Bega Valley Shire. The reserve is a rare example of a remnant littoral rainforest pocket nestled within a township in the Shire, and is a significant place for local Aboriginal culture. Through the focal point of littoral rainforest restoration, the project will connect cultures, and locals to the reserve on their doorstep. On-ground works include weed removal, planting and upgrades to the existing walking track. These will be complemented by a ‘Love our Littoral Rainforest’ education program, to increase the awareness of local residents of the natural and cultural values of the reserve and encourage stewardship of the site. The project builds on a broader vision to develop a cycle path along Lake Street to further increase opportunities for locals and tourists to connect with the reserve. Major weed threats will be treated and removed, with the aim of a 95% reduction in polygala, asparagus fern, Japanese honeysuckle, and cotoneaster. The project will also collect seed from Hobbs Corner Littoral Rainforest to propagate plants.
Flying improvement – working towards flying-fox and community coexistence – $79,050
This project will restore degraded high environmental value vegetation that includes threatened species and lowland rainforest in the NSW North Coast and Sydney Basin Bioregions. The project will carry out bush regeneration, weed management and erosion control, and also include the review, development and implementation of Vegetation Management Plans. The project will facilitate the recovery of native plant species, protect soil stability and prevent water quality degradation by enhancing existing riparian areas, especially where unauthorised vegetation removal has occurred. This project will also promote positive change in community attitudes to flying-foxes through educational resources including preparing a Teachers Resource Toolkit to be piloted with a local school.
Fighting ferals to protect Eurobodalla's endangered ecological communities – $99,987
The Eurobodalla Shire supports 11 endangered ecological communities (EECs). These EECs are often located within remnant vegetation on coastal headlands, foreshores and urban bushland reserves surrounded by residential dwellings. EECs are increasingly impacted by threatening processes associated with urban areas. In particular, garden escapees and urban rabbit populations are compromising the integrity of a number of remnant Eurobodalla EECs including Themeda Grassland Headland, littoral rainforest, Bangalay Sand Forest, coastal saltmarsh and swamp oak floodplain forest. The project will proactively work with neighbouring landholders across 68 hectares within 8 high ecological value urban areas to reduce weed presence and spread from residential gardens and assist landholders to conduct pest animal control.
Rehabilitation of Simmo's Beach Catchment – $51,200
The project will improve ecosystem and environmental assets within the Simmo's Beach catchment, Macquarie Fields. This area is home to 2 endangered ecological communities, 4 threatened plant species (Sydney Plains greenhood orchid, nodding geebung, small-flower grevillea, hibbertia puberula) and 4 threatened animals (koala, Cumberland Plain land snail, little lorikeet and grey-headed flying-fox). Engineering works to remove sediment build up from the stream, paired with removal of dense weed infestations and rehabilitation (4.14 hectares) of the stream (876 metres length) and surrounding area will seek to, with natural regeneration and plantings, restoration of the stream flow and natural habitat.
Rehabilitation of the Oyster Creek Gully habitat corridor – $47,000
The project will improve ecosystem and environmental assets of the in-stream and riparian habitat of Oyster Creek Gully, Jannali and Kirrawee. Oyster Creek Gully is 7.35 hectares of remnant bushland located within urban development. The site's ecological condition has been degraded through unregulated stormwater flows, increased nutrients, contaminants and weed populations and decreased native biodiversity. On-ground works will include control of invasive weeds, revegetation and natural regeneration to improve native biodiversity and rehabilitate a significant ecological and habitat corridor. Works will be conducted by contractors and four local bush care volunteer groups. The Aboriginal community will be engaged to conduct Aboriginal heritage identification.
Restoration and rehabilitation of Gannons Park, Peakhurst – $100,000
Gannons Park at Peakhurst contains 36 hectares of riverflat paperbark swamp forest; Sydney hinterland apple-blackbutt gully forest; coastal enriched sandstone dry forest and estuarine mangrove forest endangered ecological communities. The project will focus on the restoration of 3 hectares of powerful owl habitat and improving storm water quality through the removal of weeds and rubbish, management of erosion and replanting of local native species. Community engagement activities will include promoting awareness of powerful owl habitat, and a bushcare group will be established as part of the project to ensure the long-term maintenance of the site.
A beacon in the landscape – recognising and enhancing habitat at Mount Breckin – $100,000
Mount Breckin near Vacy, New South Wales holds around 800 hectares of remnant Lower Hunter dry rainforest and spotted gum-ironbark woodland vegetation assemblages and forms one of the large 'stepping stones' leading north to Barrington Tops World Heritage Area. Threats to the native flora and fauna include invasive weeds such as African olive and lantana, erosion on the lower slopes and vertebrate pests including wild dogs, foxes and rabbits. This project aims to engage and form a new group of landholders surrounding and occupying Mount Breckin to address these threats and improve the condition of the remnant and habitat area. Other activities include mapping of significant land features and camera trapping to determine the presence of native and exotic fauna.
Assisting Landcare in restoring a rainforest gully at Floraville Ridge Reserve – $29,144
The project seeks to protect and regenerate the rainforest gully within the Floraville Reserve and to extend the successful work undertaken to date by the Landcare group. Volunteers will work alongside professional bush regenerators in an approximate area of 1.25 hectares, focusing on sections that have been identified for their strategic value in protecting and regenerating the Lowland Rainforest endangered ecological community. The project aims to achieve an 80% reduction in the presence of privet, lantana, Japanese honeysuckle and bitou through primary and secondary weeding undertaken in mosaics. The project also aims to build the capacity of the Landcare group by increasing participation in working bees and learning new skills used to rehabilitate the degraded ecosystem.
Restoring Blackburn Island in preparation for the translocation of the Lord Howe Island Phasmid – $55,366
This project will reconstruct a native vegetation community that can support the critically endangered and endemic Lord Howe Island (LHI) Phasmid (Dryococelus australis). The project delivers priority actions from the LHI Biodiversity Management Plan 2007 and will be crucial in preventing the extinction of the last wild population of this giant stick insect. An experienced team will work with revegetation and translocation experts to restore Blackburn Island (part of the LHI Group) using best practice methods in site preparation, staged planting and monitoring to recreate a viable breeding habitat in preparation for the translocation of the LHI Phasmid. This will be achieved through a reduction in the cover of invasive weeds, specifically Rhodes Grass, and increasing the diversity of native seedlings, including greybark (Drypetes deplanchei) and blackbutt (Cryptocarya triplinervis) – historically predominant native flora to Blackburn Island.
Protection of Lower Hunter Spotted Gum Ironbark forest – $100,000
The Lower Hunter Spotted Gum Ironbark forest is an endangered ecological community with approximately 10% of the estimated pre-European distribution remaining. What remains is under threat from clearing and encroachment of weeds. The increasing presence of bell miner within the habitat is an indicator of unbalanced health, and in the case of the 3 reserves where works will be carried out, there is a lack of tree species diversity and a high prevalence of weed species. The project will undertake weed management, education and build on stakeholder relationships. The main focus will be to reduce the amount of weeds using tried and proven bush regeneration techniques of mosaic weed removal. This will ensure continued habitat for fauna utilising the weeds for shelter, while regeneration begins to occur in the treated areas. In some areas, planting will need to occur to increase diversity.
An educational event, including a weed education workshop utilising the Hunter Regional Weeds trailer and a fauna presentation, will also take place. This will heighten resident's awareness on the disposal of garden clippings in reserves, recognition of weed species, and what we can do as a community to protect our valuable flora and fauna.
Restoring Pride in Curl Curl Lagoon – $100,000
The project aims to enhance the biodiversity of the riparian margin of Curl Curl Lagoon. The project will focus on restoring riparian areas and enhancing wildlife habitats by undertaking weed control, weed removal, re-vegetation using endemic plant species and community participation.
Port Stephens oyster reef restoration pilot – $100,000
Oyster reef ecosystems are the most threatened marine ecosystem internationally and in Australia. This will be New South Wales's first pilot scale Sydney Rock Oyster reef restoration project. Located in Port Stephens estuary, the project will contribute to local marine biodiversity enhancement and water quality improvements. Restoration methodologies that have been effectively demonstrated internationally and in other Australian states will be implemented in the first project of this nature in New South Wales.
The project will develop a blue-print of how to undertake reef restoration activities in New South Wales including documenting policy and guidelines for the navigation of contemporary approval processes under various legislation and biosecurity conditions. It will provide a catalyst for future projects and will facilitate the efficient and effective delivery of future shellfish reef restoration projects in other NSW locations. Clean dead waste oyster shell will be transported in bulk to the pilot site and deployed in a variety of trial methods (including differences in pile size, height and spacing) amongst the existing oyster reefs/clumps growing on relic oyster aquaculture material. Project partners from the Nature Conservancy, and Macquarie and James Cook Universities will provide expert input to monitoring and the production of guidelines that will inform future projects.
Wallamore Anabranch aquatic habitat rehabilitation project – $100,000
This project seeks to undertake riparian and instream rehabilitation activities along the Wallamore Anabranch, a significant flood runner of the Peel River near Tamworth NSW, to enhance connectivity and biodiversity of aquatic and riparian habitat.
The proposed weed control, riparian and in-channel revegetation activities and riparian fencing will value add to similar works that have been carried out upstream and downstream of the focus project site. The completion of this project will create a continuous connection with 9 kilometres of waterway and 10 other project sites on both sides of the waterway where rehabilitation works have been fully implemented.
Gully stabilisation to protect endangered Box Gum Woodland, Mcleods Creek Nature Reserve – $28,295
Ecological values of the endangered Box Gum Woodland at Mcleods Creek Nature Reserve are being undermined by extensive gully erosion. The erosion is also impacting the habitat values of several threatened fauna species, including the endangered golden sun moth (Synemon plana). Several drainage lines within the reserve are actively eroding, resulting in gullies several metres deep and progressing by approximately 2 metres per year.
This project aims to stabilise and prevent further erosion, at priority sites, by slowing or diverting water flow, and increasing soil cover to bury the currently exposed dispersive subsoils. This will be achieved through soil stabilisation activities, and replanting box gum understorey species within the treatment sites to improve the conservation values. Opportunities for community involvement that seek to facilitate skills development will also form part of the project.
Wetlands, waders and woodlands – $100,000
The wetlands, waders and woodlands project will convert decommissioned effluent ponds at the Parkes Sewerage Treatment plant into extensive, functional habitat for a range of water bird species including listed threatened and migratory birds. Additionally, the area surrounding this series of wetlands will be managed to restore Fuzzy Box Woodland endangered ecological community (EEC) which will provide connectivity between Goobang Creek, the new wetlands and existing EEC remnants in the linear roadside reserve corridor. In total this project will create 8.5 hectares of functional wetland habitat and 5 hectares of revegetated Fuzzy Box Woodland while engaging the community to participate in revegetation activities.
Littoral rainforest – Soldiers Point – $96,350
Littoral rainforest is an ecologically significant community, listed as critically endangered due to its severely fragmented geographic distribution. There are demonstrable threats impacting it which have lead to very severe reductions in the integrity of the ecological community. Through revegetation and regeneration, this project will increase the footprint by linking the existing fragmented pockets throughout Soldiers Point. Most importantly the project will increase awareness and educate the community of Port Stephens of the importance of preserving and restoring littoral rainforest.
Mambo – managing and monitoring biodiversity outcomes – $99,910
Mambo Wetland Reserve is Port Stephens Council's most significant environmental asset. It is home to threatened fauna such as the iconic koala, Wallum froglet, and green and golden bell frog, threatened flora such as Earp's gum, and endangered ecological communities such as freshwater wetlands, swamp sclerophyll forest, saltmarsh, and mangroves. The reserve is under threat from encroachment, dumping, and garden escapee weeds due to increasing urbanisation in the area. This project aims to address these threats through a variety of community engagement events aimed at increasing knowledge and changing behaviours of neighbouring property owners. This project will also pilot a Garden Plant Replacement Scheme aimed at encouraging and supplying native plant replacements for potentially invasive garden plants, and rehabilitating and accurately mapping the significant flora and fauna of the reserve.
Council Grand Canyon: protecting Redbox Reserve endangered ecological community from erosion – $96,600
The project will minimise and repair environmental damage and degradation caused from a severe active erosion gully in Redbox Place Reserve, Royalla. The community call it the 'Grand Canyon'. It is located in a public reserve used by local residents for passive recreational purposes such as walking and bird watching.
The gully is deep and vertical-walled, in an advanced stage of rill erosion. It is a threat to native vegetation as its continuous expansion encroaches into areas of Box Gum Woodland endangered ecological community leading to tree fall and exposure of more surface areas to potential gully erosion. Water quality of Whisperer Creek and Jerrabomberra Creek is also threatened. This project will stabilise the eroding gully head and shape the gully walls, remnant native grass and other local native groundcover vegetation will be fenced for protection, and strategic planting will be carried out. Deep-rooted native perennial grasses will be established in and on the gully walls to hold soil, and locally endemic native trees will be planted above the gully to take up groundwater, slow the flow of water entering the head of the remediated area and to restore habitat.
Keeping a 'hawk-eye' on hawkweed – $74,525
This project will improve Council and community's capacity for early detection of this key threat to important Alpine and Monaro biodiversity. By building enhanced awareness and capacity to identify hawkweed, this project will support the NSW Hawkweed Eradication program at the landholder level. This will be undertaken by using new tools and technologies such as drone surveillance and the use of hawkweed eradication detection dogs, as well as tried and true tools like field days to train landholders in identification and surveillance techniques. The project aligns with the NSW Government's Biosecurity Strategy 2013-2021: 'Outcomes 3 Improved identification, diagnostic, surveillance, reporting and tracing systems for pests, diseases and weeds'.
Conserving cockatoos and curlews on the Tweed Coast – $99,810
Tweed Shire has one of the highest levels of population growth in the State. Tweed Shire Council is dedicated to mitigating the impacts associated with population growth to threatened fauna such as the bush stone-curlew (BSC) and glossy black-cockatoo (GBC) to ensure the ongoing survival of these iconic species in the Tweed. This project will focus conservation efforts for the BSC and GBC on the Tweed Coast by managing known key threats, which are habitat loss and disturbance, and predation and disturbance by domestic pets and feral animals. Active conservation of BSC on the Tweed Coast since 2012 has resulted in an increase in the local population, which now represents a significant proportion of the BSC population in New South Wales. This project will consolidate the conservation gains made to date in recovering the Tweed Coast BSC population, and also expand conservation actions into new areas of known habitat. It will also expand conservation actions to protect the GBC through planting, habitat augmentation and pest animal control.
Upper Tweed River Estuary – riparian and aquatic habitat rehabilitation – $96,780
The project will stabilise eroding river banks using techniques that increase habitat connectivity and improve fish habitat in the upper Tweed River estuary. Eroding river banks will be re-profiled, fenced to exclude stock and stabilised with native riparian vegetation. Hardwood logs will be incorporated into the river bank restoration works to increase the resilience of banks to erosion and provide structurally complex large wooden debris habitat. The project will engage landowners, recreational fishers and the broader community to improve understanding of the river ecosystem, it's condition and key threats, and demonstrate appropriate restoration techniques.
Installation of glider poles in the Birramal Conservation Area – $53,277
The Birramal Conservation Area covers approximately 127 hectares in the Wagga Wagga Local Government Area. Comprising the endangered ecological community of White Box woodland it adjoins the city's expanding urban areas. The Birramal Conservation Area is crucial habitat providing east-west and north-south connectivity for a variety of native flora and fauna, including threatened squirrel gliders (Petaurus norfolcensis). This project will establish strategically placed poles to aid movement of the squirrel gliders between the scattered clumps of woodland and a rope bridge to span a new road (to be constructed in 2019) that will cross the Birramal Conservation Area.
Restoration and rehabilitation of Bellambi Lagoon and dunes – $65,000
This project involves the rehabilitation of native vegetation within the Bellambi Lagoon and dunes. Weed control will be undertaken over an area of 7.4 hectares, within Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest and Bangalay Sand Forest, and adjacent Coastal Sand Scrub endangered ecological communities. The project will help restore the integrity of these remnant vegetation communities and support their resilience to impacts from surrounding urban areas. The project will complement the work of Bellambi Dunes Bushcare Group and local community members will be encouraged to participate through training and guided walks.