Friends of Mount Majura (FoMM) Newsletter – March 2018

Join our working party at The Fair, North Watson and help spread wood chip mulch around plantings and across bare sites. Wood chip mulch suppresses weeds, “conditions” the soil, retains moisture and reduces erosion particularly when combined with branches and stems (from woody weed control) layered over the mulched sites. There are a number of sites at The Fair work area where FoMM has successfully used this method to improve heavily degraded grassy woodland. Learn more at the working party. Give as much time as you like. Several young people have joined FoMM over the past year which is terrific. It would be great if volunteers of the young cohort could give a hand at this working party to help with the physically demanding task of spreading mulch!
Where: Nature reserve east of the Fair, North Watson; access and volunteer registration at park entrance Tay / Ian Nicol Streets.
Bring: Sun protection, drinking water and wear sturdy shoes and body covering clothing.

New Holland daisies growing in mulched site at The Fair (Photo: Waltraud Pix)

Other news and events:

Australian Native Plants Society – Canberra Region. Autumn Plant Sale – Saturday 17 March, 8.30 am to 1:30 pm
Plant lists are available. Held at the Australian National Botanic Gardens. Gates open at 8:30am. Be early, as the plants are sold very rapidly! Autumn is the best time to plant in Canberra for most plant species.

  • Plant roots grow in the relatively warmer soil and in general, plants face more favourable establishment conditions during autumn.
  • Some cold and frost sensitive species may be best planted during spring.

Inquiry into the value of the natural environment to an urbanising Canberra
The pressures on the urban natural environment grow from further habitat loss due to development and an increase in the population of people who visit nature reserves for various types of recreation. The Standing Committee on Environment and Transport and City Services is inviting submissions from interested organisations and individuals to its inquiry into the value of the natural environment to an urbanising Canberra. The Committee’s terms of reference and other materials are accessible via the ACT Legislative Assembly website. Written submissions should be lodged with the Committee Secretary by close of business on Friday, 8 June 2018.

Fenner Conference on the Environment: Urban Sustainability and Conservation – Canberra, 4-6 April 2018
Cities are increasingly recognised for the critical role they play in biodiversity conservation, environmental stewardship and global sustainability. Recent evidence indicates that 30% of Australia’s threatened plant and animal species live in urban areas, highlighting the urgent need for cities to be explicitly incorporated into national conservation policies and initiatives. Appropriate and sustainable approaches to the development and management of urban environments are pivotal to our planet’s future. Bridging the gap between research and implementation will be required to achieve evidence-based solutions for urban sustainability and conservation. This conference presents an opportunity for researchers, industry partners and policy makers from the fields of urban sustainability and conservation to meet and co-create a roadmap through which Australia can be a global leader in this space. Click here for more information.

Threatened Species in Urban Areas – Clean Air and Urban Landscapes Hub
When thinking of places that are great for conserving threatened species, the word ‘urban’ rarely springs to mind. Yet recent research shows that 30% of Australia’s EPBC-listed threatened species occur in cities, and that urban areas support substantially more threatened species per unit area than rural areas. Better management of our urban spaces is critical for conservation of Australia’s threatened species. Explore the map to see which threatened species have been recorded in or near 98 urban areas across Australia, as well as species that were once present but are no longer found there. Clicking on a species name will take you to more information about that species in the Atlas of Living Australia.

Draft Revision of Australia’s Biodiversity Conservation Strategy
On 25 November 2016, Australian, State and Territory Environment Ministers agreed to revise “Australia’s Biodiversity Conservation Strategy: 2010 – 2030” based on the findings of a review into the first five years of the Strategy’s implementation. During 2017 a working group of officials from Australian, state and territory governments, and the Australian Local Government Association has worked together to prepare a revised Strategy. The Strategy has been revised to improve its ability to drive change in biodiversity management priorities, and its alignment with Australia’s international biodiversity commitments. Called “Australia’s Strategy for Nature 2018-2030: Australia’s biodiversity conservation strategy and action inventory”, the draft revised Strategy is open for public comment until 16 March 2018, through a survey or submissions.

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