Newsletter 234 November 2014

Friends of Chiltern Mt Pilot National Park

Newsletter 234 November 2014

Dear Friends,

A small but determined group braved the wet conditions to continue the attack on the olive infestation in the reference area. Of course as soon as lunchtime came the sun came out. Since everyone was rather wet and uncomfortable a quick meeting was held in the shelter in town. There has been much discussion over the method of getting rid of the big trees and we came to the decision that drilling and filling was perhaps the best option for a number of reasons. Standing dead trees would still provide habitat and would not contribute to the ground debris. By using this method we can methodically remove all the seedlings that are surrounding the mature trees without having to remove felled trees. So drill and fill it is to be. We are under no illusions about how persistent we will have to be and consider this to be a two to three year project. The terrain is steep and not conducive to lengthy sessions. We may have a mid-month working bee if the weather is suitable and any help would be appreciated.

Around the Park

Now that November is upon us the last of the wildflowers are on show. Blue finger-flower, Cheiranthera cyanea and Common Fringe-lilies, Thysanotus tuberosus are the most striking. Golden Everlastings and Diggers’ Speedwell are also providing good colour.

 

Fingerflower single

The eucalypt blossom has declined somewhat after the few warm days and small honeyeaters are relatively scarce. The loud trilling of the White-winged Trillers, the echoing calls of the Rufous Whistlers, the far reaching “Georgie Georgie” calls of the Painted Honeyeater,

Painted Honeyeater

and the raspy alarm calls of the Rufous Songlarks are heralding the approach of summer. The presence of Friarbirds and Red Wattlebirds indicates where there is some still flowering.

Insect life is abundant, beetles, bees and delicate craneflies can all be found by those with a keen eye.

Craneflies mating

One photographer with a keen eye was Rohan Richter and his prize was a tiny black and yellow ladybird. He loaded the photos onto Bowerbird where the curator of entomology spotted them. Dr Walker had them confirmed as Micraspsis flavovittata, a little ladybird last seen in Kallista and presumed extinct. The new find is in the western district. You can view photos and read more about this if you are interested at

http://www.smh.com.au/technology/sci-tech/extinct-ladybird-back-from-the-dead-20141014-115u4j.html.

Star of the month has to be the White Wallaby with its little dark-furred joey. David Woolcock has captured some exquisite photos of this beautiful animal.

Albino Wallaby and young

I have placed the full series on the Friends website in the mammals gallery which you can access here http://friendsofchiltern.org.au/index.php/biodiversity/galleries/mammals.

Rutherglen Block

A quick trip to the block to look for some Eryngium, Blue Devil, proved fruitless. This is an uncommon plant of the park and Neil is anxious to get photos for our Flora site. If anyone comes across any we would be pleased to know the site. However all was not lost as we found another 10 small Olives and a larger one to be removed later.

From the ranger’s office

  • Contractors have commenced Fox Baiting across the whole park. Baits will be in place until the middle of December.
  • Fire Hazard slashing and clearing of roads and tracks have commenced in preparation for the fire season.
  • Realignment of a section of White Box walking track to avoid a sunken mineshaft and provide easier access from Honeyeater Picnic Area have has been completed.

Coming Events

Monday November 10th - Brolga Event

Rutherglen Landcare invites you to an evening with Wildlife Ecologist and Brolga specialist. Matt Herring.

Where: Rutherglen Senior Citizens’ Rooms situated near the roundabout.

Time 7.30pm Supper provided. Matt is a Brolga specialist, this is an evening not to be missed!

 

Saturday November 29th An Evening with the Stars

 

An astronomy night at Jane Roots and Neil Ward’s property in Chiltern South. Albury Wodonga Astronomy Society members will come out with some telescopes. Others may bring their own. There will be a BBQ beforehand with BYO salads/desserts to share and something to drink and a chair. Please RSVP by email and include your phone number in case there is a need to cancel. The venue is: 33 Orchard Lane. Chiltern From the Old Cemetery Road/Wenkes Road exit on the Freeway - turn south on Old Cemetery Rd, then right on Gayfers Road. After 2.2kms, turn left onto Gilmours Road. Travel about 2kms up Gilmours Road then turn right onto Orchard Lane. Travel 330m along to find a gateway on your left with Land for Wildlife & Trust for Nature signs on wooden rails and a green gateway.

Sunday December 7th Next Monthly Meeting

Meet at the Chiltern Post Office at 4pm or go to Chiltern Valley No 2 Dam. This will be our Christmas break-up and a no work meeting to celebrate our year’s efforts. BYO tea to share. Contact 0407 486 460

Friends Facebook Page

https://www.facebook.com/groups/556332777763388/

Rainfall

Rainfall for October: 21.5 mm over 5 days. Year to date: 517.6 mm Not enough!!

2015 Friends Calendars Available from Mid November

Click on photo for full details of purchasing options

2015 calendar photo