Christmas Hills Landcare email news - 4th August 2009

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Latest email newsletter of the Christmas Hills Landcare Group

Greetings Christmas Hills Landcarers

This newsletter is to update you on recent happenings with Christmas Hills Landcare.

....but before I go on - don't forget the Christmas Hills Happy Hour from 5pm onwards this Friday (7th) at the Christmas Hills Fire Brigade Station on the corner of Ridge and Muir Roads.

Now back to the news.....

Included in this newsletter:

  • Next event -"Looking small – observing the early post-fire recovery of the bush - 30th August"
  • Last event
  • Weed and warren mapping project up and running
  • New website
  • Warrandyte Fire operations meeting - 12th August
  • "Once around the Sugarloaf" next edition
  • New Christmas Hills Ultralight Tanker - handover event 15th August

Next event -"Looking small – observing the early post-fire recovery of the bush - 30th August"
Our next event is coming up on Sunday, 30th August, starting at Jo and Adrian's place and taking in Tony and Brigid's place. This event  will help us observe the early, and small, signs of natural recovery of the Christmas Hills bush after the February bushfires. Refer attached flier for more detail.

Last event
21 members gathered at Pip and Doug's place on Sunday, 21st June where we hosted about 20 Wurundjeri people, along with Megan Goulding, CEO of the Wurundjeri Tribe Land and Compensation Cultural Heritage Council Inc. and Mark and Chris from Parks Victoria, for afternoon tea. This was their last stop on a bus tour of the country for which they are the traditional owners that was burnt in the bushfires. The meeting was informal but we did agree to do something together again that allows us to spend more time together and learn more about local aboriginal culture.

Weed and warren mapping project up and running
For all of you that that granted access permission to their properties for the weed and warren mapping project, you will have received a letter notifying you of the appointment of Brodie Harrison to undertake this project for us. Brodie commenced late June and has been visiting properties since, using a GPS unit to record the location of rabbit warrens and our high priority weeds. If she hasn't mapped your property yet, please make her welcome when she calls to arrange her visit.

New website
Thanks to Nev Ragg, we have a new and improved website for the group. Nev has set up a Christmas Hills Landcare site as part of the Victorian Landcare Gateway and transferred across the content from the old site. Not only does the new site look good, it is easier to load information (the Gateway is designed to enable Landcare groups to set up their own sites). Go have a look at:

Warrandyte Fire operations meeting - 12th August
The Department of Sustainability and Environment is asking people living around Warrandyte State Park to comment on plans to reduce the risk of bushfire this summer.  Each winter, DSE prepares fire operations plans that include fuel-reduction burning, track maintenance and fire-break slashing. The plans are developed in consultation with stakeholders including residents, local councils, the Country Fire Authority, Parks Victoria and water authorities. 

A community meeting is being held from 6pm to 8pm on Wednesday, 12 August at the Warrandyte Community Centre (The Atrium), 168 Yarra Street, Warrandyte to outline the draft plans and give people the opportunity to ask questions. The evening will be an informal ‘drop-in’ session, with a short presentation on fire management planning at 7pm.
This meeting is being held specifically to discuss fuel-reduction burning, fire-break slashing and track maintenance in public forests and parks. The draft plan can be viewed from 1 August on the DSE web site (select Interactive maps then Fire Plan).


"Once around the Sugarloaf" next edition
Mick Woiwod, author of the 1992 book, Once around the Sugarloaf: The Transformation of a Victorian Landscape and the Story of its People, is preparing a revised and updated version. He asks that should any Christmas Hills people have any photographs or stories that they might wish to see included to please contact him on 9439 5679 or email or at 142 Glen Park Road Eltham North 3095.

Copies of the book, probably titled The Christmas Hills Story: Once Again around the Sugarloaf, are expected to be available in early 2010, will run to around 300 A4 pages and will sell for approx $30.

New Christmas Hills Ultralight Tanker - handover event 15th August
Christmas Hills Fire Brigade recently took delivery of an Ultralight Tanker (or Slip-on Unit) which was funded through the Community Safety Emergency Support Program. This unit will be a great asset to the area as it will allow the Brigade to quickly get into some areas which are difficult for the larger Tankers to access. 

Danielle Green (Member for Yan Tean and Parliamentary Secretary for Emergency Services) will be formally handing over the Tanker at 11am on Saturday 15 August at the usual Cafe Benders morning at the Christmas Hills South Fire Station (on the corner of Henley Road and Catani Boulevard in the Bend of Islands)