Grasslands Volunteers Thanked

Media Release

3 November 2013

Friends of Grasslands were out in force today to continue restoration of the Yarramundi Reach grasslands.

The Friends of the Grasslands planted 100 tussock grasses (Poa labillardierei) to restore the ecologically sensitive creek line where weeds have been removed. They also sprayed weeds and collected rubbish on the site.

A range of wildflowers formed the backdrop of the working day, organised by the Friends of Grasslands as part of its ongoing partnership with the National Capital Authority.

The partnership focuses on reinvigorating two ecologically significant grassy ecosystems, Yellow Box ñ Blakely's Red Gum Grassy Ecosystem and Natural Temperate Grassland that occur around Lake Burley Griffin ñ at Yarramundi Reach, Stirling Ridge and Scrivener's Hut.

NCA Acting Chief Executive, Andrew Smith took the opportunity at the event to thank volunteers for their invaluable support over the years.

'The NCA has partnered with the Friends of Grasslands for almost five years now,' Mr Smith said.

'Over this time, the Friends have removed nearly 2,700m3 of weed material on National Land. They have held 41 working parties, totalling nearly 3,500 volunteer hours.

'Targeted weeding in these delicate ecosystems is a fine-scale task that requires careful removal, especially in the vicinity of threatened and rare plants. This work simply could not have been achieved without the assistance of the Friends.'

'Conserving the natural heritage values on National Land is very much appreciated not only by the National Capital Authority, but the wider Canberra community,' he said.

Since 2009, in addition to supporting the Friends of the Grassland's work, the NCA has enhanced the environmental management of Yarramundi Reach grasslands by:

  • Adopting a conservation management plan;
  • Reinstating patch burning to enhance the ecology and reduce wildfire risk;
  • Increasing weed control; and
  • Fencing the site as a barrier to illegal vehicle entry.

To recognise the high natural heritage values of Yarramundi Reach, the NCA also recently rezoned the area as open space under the National Capital Plan.

Friends of Grasslands hold regular working days and its members include professional scientists, landowners, land managers and interested members of the public.

Anyone wanting to volunteer can contact Friends of Grasslands. Further details are available here.