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GORCC coastal volunteering news and updates
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Welcome to the GORCC Coastal Volunteer Bulletin August 2015 Edition.

This bulletin is published by the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) quarterly for everyone interested in environmental volunteering on the coast.  Occasionally, where there is time sensitive information, a special edition will be published.

Topics covered include everything from funding opportunities through to environmental events and news from volunteer groups in our region.
 
If you or your group has some news or information you want to share with other volunteers and community groups please get in touch here and let us know. 


IN THIS EDITION :


 
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The new Surf Coast Nature Search is live and ready for use.  The tool is mobile friendly and able to be viewed on multiple platforms.

JJCA new nature search tool


The new Surf Coast Nature Search (SCNS), an interactive, online search tool for identifying weeds and indigenous plants in our region, is now live and will be officially launched on the 18th August.

The online resource, which has been developed by  Jan Juc Coast Action (JJCA),   is a detailed database of hundreds of indigenous plants and environmental weeds on the coast between Point Impossible and Bells Beach.

Users are able to search based on a range of criteria including plant type, flower colour, size, leaf shape and more.

The website ia a great local asset that will help support an increase in environmental awareness. To date, JJCA volunteers have added 181 plant species to database, which is expected to grow as species are added and the tool extends to include fauna and cover more areas of the Surf Coast.

One of the aims of the database is to help coastal property owners create environmentally friendly gardens.  It is a simple tool that is perfect for identifying environmental weeds in ther garden and selecting indigenous alternatives.

The database can be accessed at www.scnaturesearch.com.au.

The project was supported by a $5000 State Government Coastcare Grant, $2500 Great Ocean Road Coast Committee Coastal Grant and $1000 Surf Coast Shire Grant.

The SCNS will be launched at the joint Annual General Meeting of JJCA and local Surf Coast Energy Group at Swell Café on the 18th August.  Everyone is invited to attend.  To get involved, call Luke Hynes on 0406 113 438.

 

Amy Hunt and Caitlin Ball, Green Army participants with CVA and GORCC, revegetating around the Split Point Lighthouse to deter tourist from walking on the cliffs and improve native habitat.
 

Green Army round 4 opens soon


Organisations will soon be able to nominate for a new Green Army project that has a clear national or Indigenous heritage, or environment conservation focus and can offer participants aged 17-24 years old valuable practical experience, while supporting a safe work environment.  You can learn more about the Green Army (Round 4) here.

Round 4 will consist of two streams. Stream 1 will invite heritage projects that are concerned with the promotion, protection and conservation of Australia’s National and World Heritage.

Stream 2 will invite projects that address other environmental matters including projects that directly support the protection and recovery of threatened species.

Further information about Round 4 including eligibility and project guidelines will be made available soon.  For updates on when Round 4 will be open please subscribe to Green Army updates by emailing GreenArmy@environment.gov.au


Green Army info session with CVA

Are you interested in applying for a Green Army team to help your group?  Do you have priority environmental outcomes that participants could assist to complete and learn skills from? Looking to partner with another group in a combined application? 

Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) is hosting Green Army information sessions for local groups in Geelong and Colac during August. 

Click here to view the information flyer with all the details.
 

From left: Save the Hoodie competition sponsors Paul Garrard from GBoards and Nathan Taylor from Go Ride a Wave with competition winners Harry and Sam and GORCC CEO Richard Davies.
 

Hoodie season set to begin


Its hard to believe that Hooded Plover breeding season is almost here once again!  The Hoodie's had a record year on GORCC managed land over the 2014/2015 season, with official figures showing 6 chicks fledging (compared to a previous average of 1.5 per year since 2010). 

Intensive on-ground efforts conducted by the dedicated Friends of the Hooded Plover Surf Coast volunteers paid off, and GORCC wishes to acknowledge the incredible time and energy the volunteers dedicated over the season, monitoring and wardening the birds around the clock.  

GORCC's Conservation Team also put in a mammoth effort, building fences, installing signs, manning telescopes to raise awareness through Hoodie viewing opportunities and more.

On ground efforts were supported by GORCC's new  'Save the Hoodie' communication campaign which aims to increase awareness, change attitudes and alter behaviour (particularly the behaviour of dog owners).  A competition was run sponsored by local businesses GBoards and Go Ride a Wave encouraging beachgoers to spread the 'save the hoodie' word via social media, increasing the reach of the campaign.

The campaign’s overwhelmingly positive response exceeded expectations, with extensive media coverage, noted changes to dog-owner behaviour, and evidence of strong community and stakeholder support.  The campaign is now being revised and improved in preparation for the coming 'Hoodie' season.  For more on the Save the Hoodie campaign, visit www.savethehoodie.com.au.

Birdlife Australia has announced that 16 September 2016 will be Plover Appreciation Day - a special day aimed at raising awareness of the plight of ground-nesting plovers around the world.  Head over to www.birdlife.org.au for more details.

To learn more about Hooded Plovers or to become a volunteer monitor contact BirdLife Australia at hoodedplover@birdlife.org.au, visit their beach nesting bird project page at www.birdlife.org.au/projects/beach-nesting-birds or visit the MyHoodie website.

A long nosed bandicoot was one of the creatures snapped on GORCC's new infrared cameras.

GORCC conservation monitoring update

For almost 5 years the GORCC Conservation Team has been working to improve the coastline by rehabilitating damaged habitats between Pt. Impossible and Lorne. 

The team is now engaging in new monitoring activities, helping GORCC to gain a better understanding of the health of the flora and fauna along our coastline.
 
The team is using vegetation transects in distinctive habitats (Coastal dunes – Pt. Impossible & Anglesea, Heathland – Jan Juc, Moonah Woodland - Aireys, and tall open forest in Lorne) to look at the effects of weed eradication over time.

Additionally, two infrared, motion-sensing cameras have been installed to gain insight into the fauna, both indigenous and introduced, that inhabit our coast.

Conservation Officer and Education Coordinator Pete Crowcroft reports that the cameras have already captured a range of fauna.

"The team has already captured images of the good: bandicoots & bristlebirds, the bad: foxes & cats and the ugly: ourselves by accident," he said.
 
This exciting work will result in data that paints a picture of of the health of our coastline and will help to inform future practices such as feral animal eradication.  

Applications are now open for the second 20 Million Trees Competitive Grants Round.

20 million trees: Second grants round

The Australian Government is seeking applications from eligible groups or individuals interested in undertaking a tree planting project as part of the 20 Million Trees Programme. Applications are invited for projects seeking funding between $20,000 and $100,000 (GST exclusive).

This is the second 20 Million Trees Competitive Grants Round.

KEY DATES:

Round Two is now open for applications.  Applications close 2.00pm AEST (Canberra time) 16 September 2015

Round Two projects must commence before 30 June 2016 and must be able to be completed by:

30 June 2017, for Projects seeking grant funding of $20,000 to $59,999 (GST exclusive);
or
30 June 2018, for Projects seeking grant funding of $60,000 to $100,000 (GST exclusive).

ABOUT THE GRANT ROUND:

Projects must involve revegetation activities that establish native trees and associated native understorey species. Priority will be given to projects that support nationally listed threatened species and threatened ecological communities .

Applications will be accepted from eligible individuals, landholders, community groups, Indigenous groups, non-government organisations and state, territory and local government agencies.  

More information is available here.

Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to have a say on the future event!

GORCC Environmental Event Update


GORCC is currently planning for the creation of a coastal, environmental event which is expected to be run during volunteer week (May 2016).

Thank you to all volunteers who have had input into the planning process so far.  Everyone's excellent  suggestions and comments have been taken on board and we are currently speaking with schools and corporate partners to gain their thoughts as well.

Volunteers indicated they would support a forum concept and an engaging and interesting keynote speaker.  At this stage it is envisaged that this event will incorporate these two concepts, with the forum element open for suggestions (this part of the day could include information, training, discussions etc.)

While the idea of awards for volunteers were not strongly supported, there has been a lot of interest in a student environment award, and GORCC is currently considering how this might be administered.

Another idea being considered is that each year the event features one volunteer, volunteer group or project.  The aim of this would be to engage, inspire and inform attendees (encouraging support from decision makers and funding bodies and encouraging future volunteers), raise awareness around volunteering and the work of volunteers, and acknowledge the investment made by volunteers into our coast.

We are continuing to work on a draft plan for the event.  In the meantime, if you have any thoughts, suggestions or further comments, we would love to hear them - contact Jane Lovejoy on 5220 5055 or jane.l@gorcc.com.au.

 

Don Wilson, Founder of Bushcare's Major Day Out with Marianne Wilson.

Events invited: Bush Care's Day Out


This year Bush Care's Major Day Out will be held on Sunday the 13th of September, to coincide with Landcare's 26th anniversary.

Community groups and other organisations are encouraged to hold events in celebration of the day (a planting day, a clean-up day or whatever that group would like to do).  If the date is inconvenient, events can be held on an alternative date within a week either side of 13th September.

Groups keen to participate can register an event on the Bush Cares Major Day out at www.bushcaresmajordayout.org.  Interested community members can then access information about your event and join in on the day. 

Bush Care's Major Day Out is all about encouraging and recognising environmental volunteering. 

Last year, the day saw a record 237 groups from all over Australia  hosting wide range of activities including planting, weeding, species identification and counting, plant sales, open advisory days and guided walks.
 
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