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Welcome to our new staff

We're excited to welcome three new staff members to the Port Phillip & Westernport CMA.

Todd Trimble joined us in August as the Regional Catchment Strategy Renewal Coordinator. Todd is an experienced communications, media and stakeholder engagement professional and has worked across local government. Some of you may have already spoken with him about the upcoming Regional Catchment Strategy Renewal.

Julie Trezise and Clare Bracey have joined us for the next six months to support our work on French Island. Julie is a French Island resident and has worked with French Island Landcare Group on Ramsar protection and Zoos Victoria on Eastern barred bandicoot recovery. Clare has previously worked as a research assistant at Monash University developing reviews to assess the effectiveness of conservation actions in managing Australian ecosystems. 

New funding to protect French Island's wildlife

French Island is set to become a haven for threatened species with the Australian Government announcing that $335,000 in funding from the Environmental Restoration Fund will be contributed towards efforts to eradicate feral cats on French Island.

French Island is a sanctuary for wildlife - it is home to over 230 bird species and supports a large population of Long-nosed Potoroo, a significant population of Koalas and 34 native species listed as threatened.

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Pest management trial yields positive results

Last week the PPWCMA and Western Port Catchment Landcare Network ran a preliminary results day on the Preying on Insects the IPM Way project.

The trial at a local demonstration site involved using a specific sowing sequence for renovating a pasture. The early results show that this technique can contribute to reducing pasture pests, reduce the need for chemical control and encourage beneficial invertebrates.

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New Aboriginal arts trail for Dandenong Creek

In partnership with the Living Links program, the City of Greater Dandenong has secured $150,000  through VicHealth to create an Aboriginal arts trail along the Dandenong Creek. 

The trail will build on the success of the ‘Spreading the Message’ artwork completed by Aboriginal artist Ian Harrison at Tirhatuan Park in April 2020 and will work closely with local Aboriginal Peoples and the broader community.

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Expressions of interest still open for works crew support

The PPWCMA's agricultural and environmental works crew will be starting soon. If you are a farm, government organisation or Landcare group, you can still register your interest in accessing these services. The crews will a range of services to support the delivery of  agricultural and environmental projects while providing employment to Victorians.

Register your interest now
Project updates
Protecting and connecting species on the Mornington Peninsula

Over the last four years, the PPWCMA has been working with partners to protect some of Victoria’s most vulnerable species in the most biodiverse areas of the Mornington Peninsula, such as the Dainty Maidenhair Fern and Frankston Spider Orchid. 2020 saw the project come to a close, with significant outcomes being achieved on the ground.

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Planting trees for a greener, brighter future

It has been a quiet year for Grow West on the landscape change front, with only three sites participating in revegetation activities and the annual community planting day cancelled. But we are happy to report that the original event site has now been planted by contractors with 6,300 seedlings across an area of 13.8 hectares, along 2.3km of Balliang Creek. 

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Farms2Schools making a difference

The Farms2Schools program officially kicked off at the start of August and since then has delivered 37 online incursions to 745 students from all across the Port Phillip and Western Port region. The online incursions have allowed students to learn first-hand from local farmers all about Australian agriculture and sustainability and 96% of teachers would recommend the program.

Learn more
Saving saltmarsh at The Spit

The Spit Nature Conservation Reserve is part of the Port Phillip Bay (western shoreline) Ramsar wetlands and is home to some of the most significant areas of saltmarsh vegetation in south-eastern Australia. Through the Two Great Ramsar Wetlands project, the PPWCMA recently engaged Nature Glenelg Trust to investigate the potential hydrological causes of decline in the condition of the reserve’s saltmarsh vegetation

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Upcoming events
Mental Health First Aid

Volunteers and professionals working in natural resource management are invited to participate in free mental health first aid training. The online course use self-guided and group learning to take you through the five significant mental health classifications and how to support people experiencing them.

Details and bookings
Aussie Backyard Bird Count

The #AussieBirdCount2020 is on from 19-25 October. It's a great way to connect with the birds in your backyard and local area. All you need to take part is 20 minutes and your favourite outdoor space. As well as contributing to BirdLife Australia's research, you could win some great prizes.

Learn more
Women in Agriculture Q&A

As part of the Farms2Schools program, senior secondary students have the opportunity to meet women from across the agricultural industry and ask them questions at a special Q&A style event on Thursday 5 November. The women will represent a wide range of agricultural fields, including primary production, government, industry associations, advocacy and STEM research.

Details and bookings
Wild Pollinators and Beneficial Insects Online Forum

Join us online on Thursday 12 November and learn about the contribution native pollinators and beneficial insects make to farms and the environment and what you can do on your property to encourage these important invertebrates. The event will feature keynote speakers, breakout sessions and a Q&A panel session.

Details and bookings
Events for Landcare and community groups

The PPWCMA has some great training and development opportunities specifically for Landcare and community environmental groups on offer over the next few months. Check them out below.

13 & 20 November, 10am – 1pm
Eco-Anxiety Forum

Discuss the impact of environmental events and disasters (with a focus on recent fire events) and share ideas on how to re-empower volunteers and groups in the face of real-life climate change and this two-part online forum.

Get involved
Six week course, Thursdays, 29 October to 3 December
Film Making Short Course

Learn how to tell your group's stories by film. The theory will be taught at online sessions and you will gather footage and develop the story in between. No special equipment needed.

Book now
November 2020 - June 2021
Waterways of the West - Traditional Owner Engagement Project

Landcare and community environmental groups in the Werribee or Maribyrnong catchments have the opportunity to undertake a cultural heritage activity with Wadawurrung Traditional Owners Aboriginal Corporation in 2020-21 at no cost to their group.

Learn more
Other news

Natural Resource Management Drought Resilience Program Grants

The Australian Government is inviting applications under the Future Drought Fund for projects focused on support for experimentation in NRM practices, systems and approaches that go beyond current best practice. The program aims to foster innovation and transformational change in the management of Natural Capital to deliver drought resilience in agricultural landscapes.

More information is available at the Community Grants Hub and applications close on 30 October 2020.

Protecting fruit trees and wildlife

Fruit on household trees and plants is a tempting treat for hungry wildlife. Netting is a popular way to protect fruit, but inappropriate types of netting can kill or injure animals such as birds, flying-foxes and possums. Agriculture Victoria has provided some detailed information about the correct netting and how to use it.

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Port Phillip & Westernport CMA

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