The site has a diverse array of bird life with Scarlet Robins and White-throated Tree-creepers regularly watching us work and although there has not been any sightings we are hopeful that Bassian Thrush inhabit the area as it provides the perfect habitat and there have been confirmed sightings in nearby areas. Recent frog surveys also found that Bibron’sToadlets inhabit the gullies in this area and use them as breeding sites.
Because of the diversity of both flora and fauna in the area and it being situated at the very top of Horsnell Gully it seemed like a great spot to begin controlling weeds to protect this diversity and also stop any weeds spreading further downhill into the park.
The main threat identified in this site was a thick English and Montpellier Broom infestation coming in from neighbouring properties, the Broom was at its worst in the South Eastern corner and gradually dwindled away the further into the park you headed. When we began, the Broom infestation appeared to only have just become established in the park and hadn’t yet been able to displace too much of the native vegetation, a perfect time to stop it in its tracks. After 3 working bees with all the rangers in the office and everyone doing a little but when they had some spare time the infestation was significantly reduced. The site has now been cleared of a majority of the Broom with only small seedlings remaining, which will be monitored and follow up work will take care of. In areas where large amounts of Broom was removed Olearia grandiflora, Acacia myrtifolia and Pultenaea daphnoides can already be seen beginning to re-establish in the area. Other weeds found in the area were the usual suspects, Blackberry, Boneseed, Watsonia and South African Daisy. Luckily we have only found isolated individuals or small patches of these weeds which have now been controlled, and with regular follow up and monitoring they will not get the chance to become established.
Future Follow up
The future directions for this project site will consist of follow up on emerging seedlings, in particular Broom. As well as consistent monitoring to ensure no weeds are able to get re-established. Ranger managed project sites are something we are very excited to start in our other parks and we have already begun working on other sites in Blackhill and Morialta.