FoMM newsletter October 2013

Link to pdf of FoMM newsletter October 2013

Spring has truly sprung and Nature’s Floriade is on display on Mt Majura and its neighbour Mt Ainslie. See Aaron’s brilliant photographs of Canberra Spider orchids from Mt Majura on our Flickr Orchid site. At a Mt Ainslie Weeders walk, Sunday 22 September we noticed many flowering Leopard orchids, Blue finger orchids, several shrubs of a white form of Nodding Blue Lily and a number of species considered rare in the ACT such as Murnong or Yam Daisy, a formerly important food source of the Aborigines. Rare plants of Mt Majura will be the topic of guest speaker Dr. Michael Mulvaney at the Friends of Mt Majura AGM to which everyone is warmly welcome.

Petition: Return Majura Paddocks back to Nature Reserve.
Friends of Mt Majura launched a petition to the Members of the ACT Legislative Assembly on the 21 September. The petition requests the return of the Majura paddocks to Nature Reserve and is available together with background information at:
In 2002 a block of land containing critically endangered grassy woodland was moved from Nature Reserve to Special Purpose Reserve, horse holding paddock. FoMM lobbied hard to reverse the move of the southern part of the block, the 2 Majura paddocks south of Casuarina trail. We achieved a breakthrough in 2008 when the Conservator for Flora and Fauna informed FoMM that part of the block will be moved back to nature reserve and a Variation to the Territory Plan to this effect was prepared in 2009. In May this year we learned that the process to return the land has been stopped. Volunteers donated 1000s of hours to improve the environmental conditions and many of you have been involved at National Tree Day plantings, weeding, monitoring rabbits and other work. Please support the petition.

National Tree Day Follow-up Care – Sunday 6 October
Come back to the National Tree Day planting area behind The Fair in North Watson. Help remove pesky weeds around the young plants and give some extra protection by placing woody debris around the guards. If you sponsored a tree come and see how it is doing!
When: Sunday  6th October, 9-10am
Where: access nature park entrance intersection Tay Street and Ian Nicol Street, The Fair, North Watson,  view this map.
Sun protection, sturdy shoes, long sleeve and pants and garden gloves if you have them.

FoMM Annual General Meeting
Wednesday 9 October, 7.30pm to 9.00pm
Where: ACT Sportshouse , 100 Maitland St, Hackett
A group of FoMM members has worked hard over the last year to develop a new structure for FoMM with the aim of distributing the workload by involving more people in its day-to-day organisation and activities. We now have a constitution and an interim committee, including a Convenor, a Secretary, a Coordinator, a Treasurer, a Website Manager, an Advisor and a Walks Organizer.
We would like to take the opportunity of this Annual General Meeting to review FoMM’s activities over the last 10 years, to discuss FoMMs new structure with you and to formally elect a committee. If you are interested, we wholeheartedly invite you to consider joining this new committee and to contribute in any way you see fit.
As a guest speaker we have invited Michael Mulvaney,  ACT Conservation, Research and Planning, to introduce us to the Rare Plants of Mount Majura.

Weeds Working Party – Sunday 20 October
Join us for a working party at The Fair in North Watson. Help remove woody weeds along Clancy’s track and Paterson’s Curse around the National Tree Day plantings.
When: Sunday 20 October 2013, from 9am to 12.30 pm; come for an hour or the whole time.
Where: Nature park entrance Tay Street, The Fair, North Watson, or access from Antill Street roughly opposite Carotel for a 5 minutes’ walk to the planting area; view this map.
Bring: Sun protection, sturdy shoes, long sleeve and pants and garden gloves if you have them.

Leap into Frogwatch at Census Week 20 to 26 October
The annual Frogwatch will be running throughout October with a special focus on the Census week from 20 to 26 October and you are invited to take part in this exciting community program. Frogs are indicators of environmental health and Frogwatch is a fantastic way of monitoring the impact of parkcare work.

Frog monitoring has been carried at a number of sites on Mt Majura over the past years; the three main sites have a diversity of up to seven species each. It would be great if these sites can be allocated again this year.  The aim is to monitor a site at least once during Census week.  Each site is monitored for 3 minutes, anytime during the first three hours after nightfall.  Depending on the number of sites it will take no more than a pleasant “walk in the park” on as many nights as you like.  Training workshops will be held for people who are new to Frogwatch or for those who would like to brush up on their frog monitoring skills.  Please contact Anke Maria, the Frogwatch coordinator at or 62783309. For more information go to

Australian Native Plant Society Plant Sale – Saturday 19 October
From 8.30am, at the Australian National Botanic Gardens car park. There will be more than 600 species, forms and cultivars for sale, including those not normally available, as well as many local species. Bring bags and boxes to take your plants home.

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