The cleaning up Crookwell river restoration project has been progressing very well over the past months. With the majority of the willows removed from site 1 all that remains is the chemical application- stem injection- of the scattered willows in site 2 and 3 (which the council will be commencing in May) and to start with the revegetation work which will be organised through Landcare.
The Kiamma Creek Landcare group invited the chair of F.R.O.G.S Landcare group (Friends and Residents of Goulburn Swampland) in Goulburn, Ray Shiels, to come and speak to the Crookwell group about the experiences of the highly successful F.R.O.G.S Landcare Group and the Goulburn Wetlands Project.
Ray gave a very good presentation on the importance of wetlands and how the Goulburn Wetlands project came about , the initial struggles and hurdles that they needed to jump in order to get permission to do work on the site (this all took about 2-3 years, including a 153 page submission to Council), getting funding and working with what they had, bit by bit. The decision to become a Landcare group and the benefits of being associated with Landcare, and now to the present where it seems that everyone wants to get involved with the project. They have local contractors and businesses who want to get involved.
Some lessons for the group included, the importance of having a plan and gathering support from the public and the getting volunteers interested. In order to do this F.R.O.G.S started Wetlands Wednesday which is a regular event, every wednesday, volunteers can meet at the site from 8.30am to do some work. An email goes out every monday so that the volunteers know what activity is planned for the wednesday, and what to bring. They always stop for a morning tea at around 10am which was really the turning point for the volunteer activity as the social aspect is a big part of it. They also try to organise interesting speakers to come along to the morning tea and ensure that regular emails go out to praise the good work of the volunteers.
A huge boost to the Wetlands is having the involvement of the Australian Native Plant Society and they have assisted them with getting facilities to do the propagation of the trees, shrubs, grasses and forbs which are then planted at the wetland.
Goulburn Wetlands have a great Facebook Page take a look here: https://www.facebook.com/GoulburnWetlands
The Kiamma Creek Landcare Group in conjunction with Upper Lachlan Landcare will be holding a field day along the Kiamma Creek with F.R.O.G.S member and Field Naturalist Rodney Falconer. The date is yet to be finalised but will likely be in Mid May subject to confirmation from Rodney.
The field day will be an opportunity to plan the reveg works along the creek and to look at what can be done in preparation for further willow removal along the creek in the future.