By Chantal Morton- Mornington Peninsula Landcare
Twenty-two young people were lucky enough to join Mornington Peninsula Intrepid Landcare on a Nature Connection Camp. The aspiring young conservationists experienced an immersive experience with nature through activities that showcase local natural environments and the opportunity to see the positive work being done in this space. Starting 1st of April, two jam packed days full of activities inspired the group to take positive action for the environment. The camp commenced with a Welcome to Country and smoking ceremony with Bunurong Land Council. Then off to the Dolphin Research Institute followed by a boat trip to Seal Rocks. After a picnic lunch, Westernport Biosphere’s Lance Lloyd offered his insights into all things water ecology, including blue carbon, water stewardship, Ramsar values and biodiversity enhancement.
Jess Brady of the Western Port Biosphere then took the group on a guided bushland walk and weed control at Wooley Beach with ranger Arne. The group then returned to base, Iluka Camp and Retreat for dinner and informal campfire chats with several guest speakers. At nightfall the camp headed out one more time for an evening of spotlighting for animals with Parks Victoria ranger Casey Lee. The next day, the crew set off to the Uncommon Folk farm to hear about the farming collective and regenerative agriculture practices, including Cherry Road organic flower farm, rotational grazing, no-till farming, and whole of farm baseline measures of water, soils, carbon and biodiversity. The group planted a tree or two with Greg Holland of the Greens Bush to Arthurs Seat Biolink before heading off to Greens Bush meet Sean and Lionel from Living Culture to learn about bush tucker and finish off with a yidaki session. Thanks to Torello farm for nourishing us and to Melbourne Water for funding the project.