Friends of Chiltern Mt Pilot National Park
Newsletter No 175 July 2009
The July 2009 newsletter reports on the walking track signage recently completed and progress on the proposed bird hide at Chiltern Valley No 2 as well as the healthy rainfall for the month of June
June was a wonderful month for rainfall, close to 100mm and the June average. All we want now is a wet July and August to saturate the soil. Rain was threatening as we gathered for the day’s activity but we got through the day without being caught in the passing showers. Five of us tackled the walk track signage installation and completed it in under three hours.It was a long time until morning tea and bun! As we walked the track we realised we would need to add a few more directional arrows and one more post.
This will be done between meetings. Parks will provide signage at the start of the walk with a pamphlet box attached. We thank ranger John for ensuring we had all the correct equipment for the task.
Before lunch we did some bird watching at Chiltern Valley No.2 Dam. It’s great to see the dam in good shape again and the ducks certainly appreciated it. Black Duck, Grey Teal and Hardheads were plentiful with lots of Masked Lapwings around the margins.
Jacky Winters, lots of Flame Robins, Yellow-rumped Thornbills, Willie Wagtail, White-plumed Honeyeater, Golden Whistler,White-browed Babblers and Restless Flycatcher were also present. A Whistling Kite patrolled the dam. Maybe the pair will nest again in their usual dead tree and perhaps the Diamond Firetails will nest below them as they have done before.
A late lunch was enjoyed in the warmth of the sun and followed by a stroll through the woodland area.
Around the park
The rains have topped up the dams with the exception of Cyanide Dam. I feel we will need a big fall of ~200+mm to make an impression on this dam. The valley dams now look more like wetlands. There is some White Box in flower on White Box Road. Mark and Karen reported that there were no big honeyeaters or Swift Parrots using it. They did find a small group of Purple-crowned Lorikeets on Mosquito Track in the Barnawartha Block.
The first sprays of Golden Wattle Acacia pycnantha are beginning to brighten the park. Orchid rosettes of Nodding Greenhoods, Pterostylis nutans, Dwarf Greenhoods, P nana and Blunt Greenhoods , P curta have emerged and are showing small flower buds. Hopefully there will be a good late winter display.
Parks have ripped the lines for the August planting at Valley No2. Extensive ripping of rabbit warrens was also carried out. Tuan camp site has been ripped and mulch spread over the rip lines in readiness for planting some single trees. Good rain followed the ripping. Sandy Creek Farm Trees have donated the plants, thank you Jan and Jenny.
The design has been completed and approved. Funding for this project was provided by Parks Victoria. There will be a sign erected at each wetland. If they are ready by the August meeting we may be able to erect some.
<h2>Bird Hide for Valley No 2 Dam</h2>After lunch we had a look at the various options for the siting of the bird hide. Our final choice was to site it on the western bank about two thirds of the way along the bank. Conscious of the need to avoid overhanging vegetation we finally found a reasonably open spot. On the following Monday rangers John MacDonald and Brian Pritchard came out to inspect the site and gave it the tick of approval. Access will be walk-in through the wooded area via Nankeen Track. Appropriate signage will be provided.
We will need all hands on deck for this project.
Friends of Chiltern Mt Pilot NP Name change
The updated name for the park was approved and the relevant documents forwarded to Consumer Affairs.
;Annual General Meeting
Saturday September 5th. We plan to hold the AGM at 5.30-6.00 pm ie before the dinner and presentations. Final details will be in the August newsletter.
Friends Group Photo
A group photo is required as part of the Service Award which is to be presented at the AGM. We would like to take this photo on either August 22nd or 23rd. If you wish to be in the photo please let me know on which of these dates you are available. We will then select the date.
Rainfall for June: 96.9 mm over 14 days. Yearly total: 229.2 mm over 36 days.
SUNDAY AUGUST 2ND MEET AT CHILTERN POST OFFICE AT 9.00AM
THIS IS NATIONAL TREE DAY
Tree planting at Valley No2 and some weed removal. Bring gloves, trowel, small tools for weeding, binocs, lunch and chair. Contact: Eileen 03 57 261 484
FRIENDS OF CHILTERN NATIONAL PARK inc MEMBERSHIP RENEWAL
P.O. Box 60 CHILTERN 3683
To assist, please mark the envelope Membership.
Friends have achieved a great deal during the past year. Surveys for plants, birds and monitoring, replacing and erection of new mammal boxes, tree planting and weed control are just some of our contributions. Your support for our activities is valued and your membership renewal is vital to our cause. Membership expires on June 30th. Please ensure your contact details are current. Thank you.
Please find enclosed my membership of $10 for 2009-10 The fee covers the whole family and includes 11 newsletters.