What is Landcare Fire Recovery?

Upper Goulburn Landcare Network
Since the devastating Black Saturday bushfires of Feb 2009, the Upper Goulburn Landcare Network has been working with landholders and local communities in the Murrindindi and Mitchell Shires to rebuild and rehabilitate the local environment on private property.
This blog presents some of the stories.
To find out more about our program or to volunteer with one of our projects contact Landcare Coordinator Chris Cobern on 5736 0104.
Or by email on ugrecovery@gbcma.vic.gov.au

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Fencers Without Boundaries

Our UGLN fire recovery fencing program 'Fencers Without Boundaries' has just completed another very successful year.
To date volunteers with our fencing program have contributed over 2500 days to rebuild 220 kilometres of fencing on fire affected properties throughout Murrindindi and Mitchell Shires.

Funded by the Federal Governments 'Caring for our Country' program, we have put tens of thousands of dollars into the local community and small business' by sourcing local accommodation, catering and meals, timber & hardware, transport, machinery, hotels, safety wear suppliers, the list goes on.

We have also employed locals from Whittlesea, Kinglake West, Yea and Kilmore.

Our program will continue in 2012 but our focus will be on fencing to protect native habitats such as waterways, remnant vegetation and revegetation sites. As seen in these photos of CVA and Uniting Church volunteers recently fencing off a tributary of the Yea River from cattle.

To volunteer or to find out more about our fencing program phone Chris Cobern on 5736 0104.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Lorax project 2011 winds up for another year

The UGLN's Lorax Project has finally finished for 2011.
The high demand for trees on fire affected properties and the good soaking spring and early summer rains allowed us to continue our revegetation program a bit longer than usuall.
This year we revegetated over 31 hectares by planting 9580 plants with assistance from 562 volunteers. We also potted up over 2000 plants for next years reveg program.

The volunteers came from many different community and corporate groups including stalwarts NAB and ANZ, Stiefel Laboratories, Conservation Volunteers Australia, Kinglake

Scouts, DSE, Dept of Planning and Rural Communities, Kevin Hienz Garden Centre, Christ Church Grammar School, Marcellin College and JB Were.
Our program will kick off again in Autumn 2012.
For enquiries about tree planting on your fire affected property or to volunteer phone Chris Cobern on 5736 0104.

Thursday, December 8, 2011


When I saw the bare blackened trees that were left standing after Black Saturday, I wondered what had happened to the possums, birds and other small mammals that had once lived there.

Of the many who lost their homes on Black Saturday, our smallest and neediest.
have required more help than others in finding and rebuilding a new home. The destruction of so many trees in the 2009 fires meant the loss of sanctuary to many of our native wild life. Those animals who miraculously survived the flames soon found themselves in greater danger from predators because of the loss of their homes in the trees.

A dedicated group of people from Upper Goulburn Landcare Network have set about providing new homes for some of our furry and feathered friends. They have embarked on a project to set up nesting boxes by attaching them to the blackened trees, providing new homes for these animals. The boxes, made from timber, have different sized entry holes through which the creatures can access the warmth and safety they provide. Larger marsupials, like ringtail or brushtail possums, need a larger access hole than the smaller feathertail or sugar gliders.

The Landcare network has received help from many varied groups of volunteers, including Kinglake Scouts, students from Yea High School and Christ Church Grammar, Shepparton Mens’ Shed and ANZ volunteers. These people have donated their time and skills to make and locate the nesting boxes where needed. The boxes are attached to the trunks of trees, at varying heights near branches so that the animals can get to them easily.

We have several boxes at our place and the other day I received a big surprise when I went to check to see if it was being used. I slowly lifted the lid so that I wouldn’t frighten any new inhabitant. As I looked in, I saw two sleepy, golden eyes peering up at me inquisitively. Nestled in some dried grass at the bottom of the box was a ringtail possum who seemed puzzled by the intrusion. His little round face seemed to be asking: Who’s interrupting my sleep? Don’t you know what time it is? When he was satisfied that I presented no danger, he rustled around a little in his bed and curled up again to dream his possum dreams.

It’s heart-warming to see the return of our native wildlife, and to know that they have a safe place to live once again.

Kathy Stewart