Friends of Mount Majura (FoMM) Newsletter – December 2018

End-of-the-Year Working Party – Sunday 16 December 2018
Join us to help remove English Ivy, Japanese Honeysuckle and a few other woody weeds that grow in and around the drainage line close to the Hackett reservoir. Come early for an introduction and give as much time as you want.You need no experience to help at this event; instructions and tools will be provided on site.
Where: Meet at ParkCare notice board opposite of the water reservoir off Rivett Street and French Street intersection, view this map.
Bring and wear: Sun protection, body covering garden clothing and sturdy shoes; if you have them bring your gum boots.
Inquiries: ph 6247 7515 or Email

Removal of Japanese Honeysuckle in May 2017. (Photo: Waltraud Pix)

Horehound Blitz in November 2018
A small group of ANU Intrepid Landcare students joined forces with a handful of FoMM volunteers on Sunday 18 November at the old stock camp on the ridge between Mount Majura and Mount Ainslie to clear approximately 1200 square meters of horehound and to spread wood chip mulch over a smaller sized area that has been hand weeded at a previous working party. The weather was pleasant – not too hot and not too cold – and after 3 hours of hard work and lots of chatting the group was happy and satisfied with the result of weeding up to the end of the top part of the stock camp before it slopes down towards the water reservoir in the east. This was the second time the ANU Intrepid crew have lended a hand removing horehound at this stock camp and the crew plans to come back to tackle more. Read more.

Happy weeders after 3 hours horehound blitzing. (Photo: Waltraud Pix)

Vandalism around the drain line
It is with sadness to report ongoing vandalism of FoMM work and Parks Service infrastructure around the Hackett Reservoir drain line. The ParkCare notice board and signs have been vandalised with graffiti, shrubs planted by volunteers were broken and erosion control measures destroyed. If anyone has an idea how to address vandalism, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact Email  or Parks Service on Ph. 6207 2113.

Vandalised ParkCare Noticeboard opposite Hackett reservoir. (Photo: Waltraud Pix)

Dead ShinglebacksVisitors to the Mt Majura nature reserve report dead Shinglebacks Tiliqua rugosa in increasing numbers. Harmless and gentle, Shingleback skinks also known as Sleepy lizards or Stumpy tails are slow moving lizards that have no defence against dogs and cats. Please keep your dog on the leash all the time in the nature reserve and ask other dog owners to be responsible. Do you know that Shinglebacks mate for life and that females give birth to one or two live babies that are close to half the size of mum? Learn more about these fascinating lizards: Life, death and a sleepy lizard: One researcher’s remarkable work on a monogamous blue tongue, by Ann Jones for RN Off Track.

A dead Shingleback spotted close to the drain line east of Rivett Street. (Photo: Waltraud Pix)

Other news and events:

2018 ParkCare Christmas Party – 8.00 – 10.00am Friday 14 December
ACT Parks and Conservation Service invites all ParkCare volunteers to the ParkCare Christmas Party at Weston Park BBQ area (Prescott Lane, Yarralumla) for a BBQ breakfast, to bring everyone together for a celebration, and to say thankyou for all your hard work. ParkCare has grown over the past year and now includes volunteers from ParkCare Patch, VisitorAssist, RangerAssist and WildlifeAssist. Volunteers are essential to protecting, championing and interpreting the environment here in the ACT. RSVP: through the ParkCare Hub or Email Volunteer Programs Manager Alison McLeod.

Arachnid Adventures by Twilight at Jerrabomberra Wetlands – 7.30 – 8.30pm, Sunday 16 December 2018
Come along and discover the fantastic world of spiders. Join spider expert Andrew and learn all about our furry friends as we trek into the night to see how many different types we can find! Search the wetlands for these 8 legged hunters of the night and meet some of Andrew’s collection. Meet at 2 Dairy Rd Fyshwick, past the Wetland Foreshores Development, through the traffic calming devices until you get to a green mail box, gate and sign on your left saying Jerrabomberra Wetlands Offices. This event is $15. Register here.

Snakes Alive!at the Australian National Botanic Gardens – 10.00 am – 4.00 pm, 14–20 January 2019
A live exhibition at the Crosbie Morrison Building showcasing a variety of Australian reptiles and amphibians, many of which are threatened, endangered and very rarely seen in the wild or captivity. Feeding times 10.30 am and 1.00 pm daily. Presented by the ACT Herpetological Association (ACTHA) in partnership with the Australian National Botanic Gardens. Read more.

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