On Saturday 12th August 2017, approximately 70 people gathered at Mount Burr Swamp to join Nature Glenelg Trust (NGT) for an informal afternoon to celebrate the successful fundraising campaign that led to the purchase of the property almost a year ago.
With water levels rising and the bed of water ribbons in the wetland looking spectacular, attendees had the perfect backdrop for an enjoyable afternoon among fellow supporters.
Indeed, despite a dry June, the inundation extent of the wetland is greater than the same time last year, thanks to the success of the trial structure on the outlet drain restoring a deeper water level; ensuring the site held permanent water through last autumn for the first time in decades.
The afternoon kicked off with a couple of hours birdwatching, bushwalking and tree planting – and luckily the showers mostly stayed away!
Then supporters gathered in the shearing shed to have afternoon tea, hear about NGT’s early works and future plans for the property, and to witness the unveiling of the permanent sign that has been installed in the shearing shed.
The sign recognises all of the donors, volunteers and contributors to the project so far – of which there are too many to name here – and we thank them for their incredibly generous support. Major organisational partners in the project include the Native Vegetation Council, OneFortyOne Plantations, Natural Resources South East and the Nature Conservation Society of SA (through the bequest of Madeleine Boyce).
Local community groups that really dug deep and deserve a mention include the Millicent Field Naturalists Society and the Friends of Naracoorte Caves. I am also especially grateful to our major private supporters, who through their words and actions – when it really counted – led by example and drove the success of our public fundraising campaign last year. To Neil and Helen Ellison, Barb Cameron, James Darling, Lesley Forwood, Doug & Annette Balnaves and Michael Pocock – on behalf of NGT and all other project supporters, a heartfelt thank you.
All in all, it was a great day that reminded everyone who was present of the great things we can achieve for the environment when everyone chips in towards a common goal. While we still have a long way to go, thanks to that incredible community spirit, this ambitious project is now off to a flying start.