Eaglehawk Waterhole Update – planting, weeding and fauna surveys coming up!

Saturday July 29th will be our final planting day this season for 6500 seedlings to go into the 70ha+ revegetation site we’ve been tackling over the last 3 years. We recorded a very handsome 90% survival rate from last year’s plantings and with Sam and Andy busy fumigating warrens, removing tree guards on seedlings that are performing well then preparation for this year is coming along nicely. Please come along and enjoy a great day out in a fabulous reserve with a great bunch and maybe we’ll see and hear some Red-tails too. Please register your interest for our community planting day by email or calling the Mt Gambier NGT Office (08) 8797 8596.

Veldt Grass Control
Control of veldt grass commenced this season, with burning undertaken in several locations over the property at different sizes/scales. The burning is to help promote natural regeneration but also to aid in the control of veldt grass by providing fresh growth for spraying, perhaps encourage kangaroos to preferentially graze it rather than our seedlings and to reduce fuel loads of what has become a vast thicket of dry grasses in places since grazing has was removed in 2013.  Overall this method is proving to be very successful at a small scale (with limited resources) and complements hand weeding and planting with natives to restore areas back.

Andy has made some noticeable improvements to the entrance and picnic area at Eaglehawk over the last few months. You will notice bordering of the tracks with old fence posts and timber off-cuts and replacement of veldt grass tussocks with native ground cover plants and encouragement of native grasses in selected locations. It looks a great Andy, keep it up! The insect collection is also nearing completion in the Mt Gambier Office, assistance has been offered by members of the SA Museum to identify moths and beetles, which has been appreciated.

Fauna Survey
We checked the roofing tiles grids for reptiles and completed the final round of bird survey sites this month. Surprisingly, a fantastic variety of reptiles were beneath the tiles including a new species to the site, the Striped Worm-lizard (Aprasia striolata). We also found Mouse spiders, Scorpians, and even Golden Ants. A small mammal survey will be undertaken in July using pitfall and Elliott traps. We hope to catch pygmy possums again and hopefully a greater variety of small mammals than caught previously in 2015.

Anyone interested to come along is urged to contact us at the Mt Gambier NGT office on (08) 8797 8596.

Natural regeneration at Eaglehawk Waterhole

Natural regeneration at Eaglehawk Waterhole

Bryan Haywood