Many of Gunning District Landcare’s projects are aimed at restoring our waterways and farmlands so that they are great for stock, great for wildlife and great for people too. 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. We want to do all we can to promote and implement ways of revegetating our landscapes to make them more productive, biodiverse and beautiful.

Gunning District Landcare is calling 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, and we need your help to provide safe refuge before we lose them altogether. Farm dams are ideal as they are safe from predators and can be easily monitored.

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.

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.

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

There are some 10,000 feral foxes in the wider Gunning district. They are a huge environmental and economic menace. While individuals and authorities have been battling the fox for years, these efforts have been patchy and only partially successful.

Gunning District Landcare wants to have a real impact on this problem. We have been working with South East Local Land Services to develop a sustained and strategic attack on fox numbers across the district and surrounding areas. Foxes will always be with us but we know that if neighbours work together to eradicate foxes over a wide area then we can have a real significant impact on their numbers.

We have established a network of group organisers and will be undertaking at least two major baiting programs each year. Action on this scale has to make a difference. If your property is 10Ha or larger, we ask you to consider joining us.

We offer free training so you can use the necessary 1080 baits safely, ethically and effectively.

While 1080, used strategically, is an essential element of our campaign against the fox it is not the only one. We will be adopting other control techniques over time. And there are other feral pests damaging our environment which we hope to also tackle co-operatively in the future.