Friends of Mount Majura (FoMM) Newsletter February 2016

Welcome to the February 2016 edition of the FoMM newsletter. For your information, the ACT Parks and Conservation Service is planning two prescribed burns in the coming months in Mt Majura reserve, to limit the potential spread of bushfire. Prescribed burns are of low intensity and conducted by experienced fire managers, supported by trained firefighters. They aim to protect assets such as homes and promote the ecological diversity of our bushland areas. Every effort is made to conduct burns in weather conditions that will minimise the impact of smoke on residents. Click here for more information, see maps and download bushfire operation plans.
See you on the mountain.
Jo Lynch
FoMM Secretary

FoMM activities and news:

Ant Walk – Sunday 14 February, 4pm – 5:30pm
Join ANU ant specialist Ajay Narendra to learn amazing things about jack-jumpers and other ants that live on Mount Majura. Ants are fascinating, beautiful and fun to watch. Some ants have a painful sting, and others only bite. Some ants are coloured, or scented, or hairy. Some pretend to be spiders, a few have excellent eyesight, and one species can jump! Kids accompanied by adults are especially welcome.
Where: Helms Place Mt Majura nature park entrance (near junction of Rivett and Richards Streets)
Information : Ph. 0408 429 214 or this email
Bring and wear: a magnifying lens, sun protection and covered shoes. Please bring a gold coin donation.
It is important to notify us if you are allergic to ants or bee stings.
Click here for more information.

Jack Jumpers use their impressive jaws to catch and hold prey and a sting to defend themselves and their nest (Photo A. Narendra).

Weeds Working Party – Sunday 21 February 9am – 12noon
We will continue work to remove woody weeds from the gully south of Valour park. This work involves cutting stems of woody plants and dabbing the cut surface with the herbicide glyphosate; volunteers who don’t want to use herbicide may choose hand removing herbaceous weeds such as Viper’s Bugloss, horehound or thistles. Control of woody weeds using the cut & dab method and hand removing herbaceous weeds using mattocks and trowels.Come early for an introduction; give as much of your time as you want.
Where: Nature park east of The Fair, North Watson; access nature park entrance Tay / Ian Nicol Sts.
Bring and wear:
Sun protection, sturdy shoes, body-covering clothing; tools will be provided.
Click here for more information.

Flowering Viper’s Bugloss, Echinum vulgare @ The Fair (W.Pix)

Clean Up Australia Day at Mt Majura – Sunday 6 March, 10am – 12noon
FoMM will be hosting a Clean-up Australia Day event again this year. Please come and join us. Register for the Mt Majura Bush Clean-Up event here or just come along. Every year, hundreds of thousands of Australians help clean up their environment on Clean-Up Australia Day. Learn more about Clean-Up Australia here.
Where: Volunteer registration at the nature park entrance at Kellaway Street, Hackett.
Bring and wear:  your friends and family, sun protection, drinking water, enclosed shoes, long sleeves and pants; we’ll provide gloves and rubbish collection bags.
Inquiries: Email or Ph. 6247 7515
Click here for more information.

Clean up kids (W.Pix)

Canberra Nature Map (CNM) is now on Android!
A major milestone, the new CNM Android app went live in the early hours of 18 January and is available here. Well done Aaron! This version provides full support for CNM’s new Groups (Plants / Reptiles+Frogs / Butterflies / Birds) as well as full support for the new multi-level Sub-Categories in our taxonomy (E.g. Wildflowers -> Daisies). This means that you can drill down into a very specific area much more easily when both reporting new sightings and also viewing species guides either generally, or within a specific Nature Park. It works 100% offline without any mobile reception which was one of the core principles of the original design, so you can rely on it when in remote areas. We need your feedback! If you have an Android device, your feedback is really important (both good and bad) so that we can continuously improve. The iPhone app will also soon receive a make-over to bring it up to speed. Visit the Canberra Nature Map website for more information.
Lichen at Mt Majura (Dusty)
A lichen on Mt Majura recorded on CNM (Dusty)

Other items of interest:

Black Mountain Nature Reserve: A Special Place Exhibition – 17 February – 15 March, 9.30am – 4.30pm
Created by the Friends of Black Mountain Park Care group, together with Molonglo Catchment Group, this free exhibition at the Australian National Botanic Gardens highlights the natural and cultural history of Black Mountain. It features a series of panels displaying beautiful photographs and up to date information about this special place.

National Standards for Ecological Restoration in Australia
The Society for Ecological Restoration Australasia (SERA) has released these draft Standards for public comment. The Standards have been designed to encourage all restoration and rehabilitation projects in Australia to reach their highest potential. SERA and 12 partner organisations, collaborated and developed the national Standards over the last three years – carefully considering the needs of all stakeholders. Public comment closes on COB 15 February 2016. The final version will be accompanied by an online interpretation that will be illustrated by examples. Both are scheduled to be launched on March 15th 2016 at the National Seed Science Forum in Sydney. Click here for more information and to download the Standards.

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