Projects

Projects band

Gunning District Landcare’s projects are aimed at looking after our region's terrestrial and aquatic environments so they are productive and sustainable for stock, wildlife and people. Our core projects relate to:

  • managing pest animals, particularly foxes through our coordinated baiting program;
  • protecting threatened species and other wildlife, with a focus on the endangered Southern Pygmy Perch which has been found in our area, and;
  • establishing trees and shrubs in the local landscape, with benefits flowing to productivity and environmental values. Scientific evidence and the experience of pioneering local land managers, show that a property with around 30% of its area planted to trees can be more productive than just bare paddocks.

Gunning District Landcare has also run a successful School Holiday Program since the end of 2017. We offer engaging, enjoyable and informative activities for children and teens that build knowledge about our local environment. 

Mates of Mundoonen is a WIRES funded project to determine how the koala and the spotted quail-thrush are faring in the local Mundoonen Nature Reserve.

Recently, koalas across the country were beleaguered by devastating bush fires and habitat destruction. Is our koala still with us locally? This project, led by local landcare groups from the Gunning and Yass districts, aims to find out – and to do all it can to help keep koalas here for the future.

Fox killing wildlife smallerThere are some 10,000 feral foxes in the wider Gunning district. They are a huge environmental and economic menace. Foxes are an invasive introduced species that cause significant harm to stock and wildlife. Not only do they kill lambs and chickens, they also spread diseases that affect all kinds of stock – including cattle - and some native animals. Foxes have caused the extinction of many native birds, reptiles, amphibians and mammals; they are an on-going threat to numerous others. 

Gunning District Landcare has a proud history of fighting foxes. One of our predecessor groups, Jerrawa Creek Landcare, established the model of coordinated group baiting, which organises landholders within a local area to all bait at the same time. This has proved extremely effective at reducing fox numbers. The more people involved in a coordinated baiting program, the better. Whether you are a sheep producer, cattle producer, part-time hobby farmer, or if you have a conservation block – everyone has role to play. 

In 2018, Gunning District Landcare called for people to nominate suitable farm dams as refuge sites for the threatened Southern Pygmy Perch. There are only three populations of this charismatic little fish left in the wild in NSW, and two of these populations are in the Gunning area!

Unfortunately, Southern Pygmy Perch is under severe threat from the voracious non-native Red Fin Perch. Farm dams are ideal as they are safe from predators and can be easily monitored.

 

In 2005 a local landcare member made the first confirmed sighting of a koala in the Mundoonen Nature Reserve. This was an occasion for great delight. Are koalas still there now? In September 2016 some GDL volunteers helped NPWS Rangers to undertake surveys to see if we could find evidence of their presence. Download the report

Mundoonan Koala Survey Sept2016

We have begun work with Gunning Primary School to further develop local kids’ understanding and interaction with their local environment. Gunning District Landcare also has riparian plantings around Barbour Park and Meadow Creek, including the Bruce Bray Riparian Walk with interpretative signage. We hope to realise the potential offered by these sites, together with others such as the Golf Club, to be linked and enhanced to the benefit of the community and the local environment.

Dalton Public School. It’s P&C Association, Gunning District Landcare and Greening Australia are protecting and enhancing the endangered Yellow Box Community that adjoins the school. Guided walks with interpretative signage will make this significant bush block and ideal Outdoor Education Centre.

DBB

We have been working with the Dalton Community Association to remove woody weeds and replace them with native plants. During this work two local youngsters found two fish which they rightly believed to be a previously undiscovered remnant population of Southern Pygmy Perch – only the fourth population known! While this very small population is under great stress, it is a very hopeful and inspiring find for us. We will continue to maintain and improve this area.

Oolong Creek Planting Day Dalton

Gunning District Landcare has been working with Luke Pearce from Department of Primary Industries Fisheries, and Dr Mark Lintermans, Associate Professor in Freshwater Fisheries ecology and management at University of Canberra, to develop the Southern Pygmy Perch Recovery Action Plan. Which will also benefit the Yellow Spotted Bell Frog. Both listed as endangered species.

Whilst both Southern Pygmy Perch and Yellow Spotted Bell Frog occur here in the Gunning area, populations are low and without help these species are unlikely to persist.

This local Recovery Action Plan will give us a clear action plan for the future to ensure our efforts are strategic and coordinated. The plan should be completed by Spring 2017.

Further supporting the maintenance and enhancement of suitable habitat for these species is to cease the practice of burning vegetation to clear waterways.

Please see the PDF - Managing Stream Vegetation

SPPYSBF