News – December, 2013

Welcome to new Friends

  • A very warm welcome to our new Friends – many of whom joined up after the last newsletter campaign and others who joined following our 30th Birthday celebration function.
  • Thank you for your interest.  You have joined a community of more than 150 people who care for our park.

We wish all our Friends and your families a safe and happy holiday period.  Please do enjoy your park during the break also.

Realignment of Path Adjacent to 60 Main Street

  • Council has delivered a nice Christmas present to park users!  – The path realignment work is nearing completion following woody weed removal in late November and much TLC by Committee and Friends in several working bees earlier this year.
  • The land adjacent to 60 Main Street was one of the most neglected areas in the park until rehabilitation work started last year.  The Committee has eagerly awaited the conclusion of the Council path works – so we can get stuck into re-vegetation work at the site once the planting season starts.
  • Link: Temporary Path Closure 

 Funding and Doing Our Work

  • The Committee has applied for grants to fund 1,500 tube stock to intensively re-vegetate the land adjacent to 60 Main Street and also the Malcolm Street Billabong area.  We’ve also sought  funds to purchase weeding and maintenance equipment.
  • Grant assessments have commenced and we hope to have some good news next month.
  • Hopefully, there’ll need to be the need for lots more Working Bees next year.

Syringe Safety

  • It does not appear to be a problem in our park – but Council would like us to warn our park users not to touch discarded syringes or related waste.
  • Please contact Council for pick up (telephone 9262 6333 – even ‘After Hours’).
  • Several of our Friends collect rubbish when out walking (thanks for helping keep our park clean!).   In another park in Whitehorse, someone recently picked up a syringe and added it to a weed pile for removal by Council.  Although well-intentioned, this action presented a double hazard – both to the person picking up the waste and also to the Council people later collecting and removing the weed pile with its concealed dangers.
  • Link:  Park Users and Neighbours

Plant of the Month

  • Plant of the month is Common Dogwood (Cassinia aculeata).
  • This example is near the Main Street entrance to Kalang Park on the south side of the creek:Cassinia aculeata

Sightings

  • Sightings – this year’s batch of Tawny Frogmouth chicks seem to be doing very well:
    Life's a hoot!

    Life’s a hoot- for young Tawnies! (picture courtesy of one of our Friends – Jan Harrison)

    Although we might be implying the Tawnies are owls (their faces look a lot like owls’  faces don’t they?) – they are not owls!  It’s all in their feet apparently  – here’s a reference if you’d like to know more… http://australianmuseum.net.au/Tawny-Frogmouth

  • Review of 2013
    • There is no Committee meeting during December – which normally doubles as the major source of news for our monthly bulletin.  So we’ll fudge things a little and offer a review of the significant events of 2013 so as to give you some holiday reading and to inform our new friends of news they may have missed.  We’ve added links to further information if you would like to know more:
    •  Garie Street bridge to the Laburnum Primary School Path
      • A (foot)sorely needed  new path for Blacks Walk from the Garie Street bridge to the Laburnum Primary School was constructed with significant committee design input.  A feeder path to the main east-west path mainly designed to serve the cycling community was also installed.
    • Land Adjacent to 60 Main Street
      • As noted earlier, the path in the land adjacent to 60 Main Street has been realigned away from the creek.  Five major working bees were conducted at the site during the year having commenced with a couple last year:
      • The “scar tree” on the boundary of the park with the property at 60 Main Street was reduced to a “large stump” after assessment by the Wurundjeri people that it did not actually have cultural significance and due to its deterioration.  The tree was pruned above the scar so that it can still be seen. Link: Scar Tree News
      • The site also gained further notoriety courtesy of an unusual development proposal which attracted more than 60 objections.  The application is still unresolved – awaits a decision by Council’s Planning Department.  Link:  The “yellow signs” are up!  Update:  in a letter dated 20/12/2013, Whitehorse Council’s Planning and Building Department notifies that it has determined to Refuse to Grant a Permit. 
    • Bushland News
      • The last edition (November 2013 – June 2014) of the Bushland News to be hand-delivered throughout the local community has been distributed.  From now on, the News will be distributed to Friends by e-mail with hard-copies going to those without e-mail who register with us.
      • You can download our latest edition in full colour here.
      • Recent editions from 2010 onward are available via a newsletter “category” on our web site.  There is also an archive of older editions covering 2004-2009 and the historic first editions of 1981.
      • Some Friends found further old editions when researching for the 30th Birthday Celebrations – we’ll add to these to the archives in due course.
    • Bird Surveys and Sightings
      • This year’s new bird (for our park) is the Purple Swamphen (Porphryrio porphryrio).  This bird is a known resident of the Blackburn Lake Sanctuary but has not been seen in the Creeklands before this year.
    • Whitehorse Housing and Neighbourhood Character Review
      • The State Government has released reformed residential zones to replace the current Residential 1, 2 and 3 Zones by 1st July, 2014.  Whitehorse Council has been working on Housing and Neighbourhood Character strategies for the last twelve months or so to provide Council with a tool to translate our existing residential zones into the “reformed zones”.
      • Zoning problems could be very bad news for the park.  The Council’s draft strategies have been open to two rounds of community consultation with a third expected in January.  The latest version largely addresses significant concerns we had for the protection of the park.  This is one to watch out for in January, 2014.  Link: Latest update
    •  Illegal Mulch Dumping Conviction
      • The Whitehorse Leader of Wednesday, 16th October (p17) reported that a Furness Park illegal mulch dumper was fined nearly $1,000 with a conviction.
      • Link: Illegal Mulch Dumping
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