UP to 3650 native trees and shrubs and several thousand volunteer hours have been completed on three projects with funding from the Southern Rivers Catchment Management Authority.
Council has been collaborating with bush care groups at the sites – Puckeys Estate North Wollongong, Towradgi Creek estuary and dunes and Wollamai Point Lake Heights – to restore these areas through the ‘Caring for Our Coast’ program.
The one-year restoration project at Towradgi Estuary included the dunes at Towradgi and Corrimal beaches, and was completed with grant funds.
The grant of $20,000 and Council’s contribution of $15,000 went towards control of exotic vines and woody weeds in the Swamp Oak and Grassy Woodland areas, to support the Bushcare groups targeting invasive weeds, and to revegetate the Towradgi Creek riparian zone at Rotary Park.
The areas contain the endangered ecological communities Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest and Illawarra Lowlands Grassy Woodland. The site also provides habitat for wader birds, reptiles and the endangered Green and Golden Bell frog.
The grant supports the volunteer work of Council contract bush regenerators and three Bushcare volunteer groups – Bluedivers Bushcare Group, Towradgi Dunes Bushcare and Corrimal Dunes Bushcare. Bluedivers Bushcare group (named after the Azure Kingfishers seen at the site) has been volunteering at the site for 18 years (since 1994).
Manager Environmental Strategy and Planning Renee Campbell said these projects have shown that Council, working with selfless volunteers, have been able to make great progress in preparing and planting these coastal areas with thousands of native trees and shrubs.
“The Caring for our Coast program has enabled Bushcare volunteers to be able to put in more than 4,000 hours removing exotic vines and woody weeds and replanting with native trees and shrubs that will help restore the endangered ecological communities – Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest, Swamp Sclerophyll on Coastal Floodplain and Littoral Rainforest,” Ms Campbell said.
“These sites also provide habitat for the Green and Golden Bell Frog, the Barking Owl, wading birds and Grey Headed Flying Fox.
Council received grant funds of $41,180 and contributed $27,000 for bush regeneration of the Puckey’s site at North Wollongong. More than 3000 plants from Council’s Botanic Gardens Nursery were also supplied.
The areas contain the endangered ecological communities –Swamp Oak Floodplain Forest, Swamp Sclerophyll on Coastal Floodplain and Littoral Rainforest – and provides habitat for the Green and Golden Bell Frog, Barking Owl, wading birds and the Grey Headed Flying Fox.
The grant supported the volunteer work of two Bushcare groups and Council’s contract bush regenerators. The Puckeys Estate Bushcare group has been working on site for 12 years and the Bushcare weekday volunteer project which has been involved at the site since 2007. They contribute about 2000 hours a year undertaking weeding and planting.
“Council thanks the Southern Rivers Catchment Management Authority for these grants which total $71,180 and Council has contributed $51,000 towards the three projects,” Ms Campbell said
If any person would like to volunteer and join the Bushcare groups involved with these projects or other Bushcare projects in Wollongong they can contact, Council’s Customer Service Centre on (02) 4227 7111.