Connector Newsletter – Issue 18

July – September 2018

Community Lens Fox Monitoring and Control Project

The Community Lens Fox Monitoring and Control project is a two year project, funded by the State government through a Biodiversity On-ground Action Grant, aiming to abate the predation pressure of foxes on native small mammals, ground-dwelling shorebirds and livestock in northern Western Port. The project will integrate biodiversity monitoring and fox control activities by local residents as citizen ‘scientists’ with other stakeholder fox management in the region. This will contribute to a landscape scale map of all management activities, which will identify gaps in control. The project will also help determine the effectiveness of control techniques, and how control works influence predator/prey dynamics. Landholders and community groups in the coastal northern Western Port region will be integral to the success of the project. Through the Community Lens project participants will be empowered to build pest management into routine land management and the broader community will gain knowledge of biodiversity values, monitoring and threat abatement.

I have been thrilled with the eagerness in which residents have sort to be involved in the project. Twenty-six motion-sensing cameras are now deployed and monitoring fox and other biodiversity activity across five private properties and two reserves in northern Western Port. There is also a further three properties poised to join the monitoring effort in the coming week. Images are just starting to be collected and early signs suggest there is significant fox activity in the area. On Saturday 23rd June 2018 Western Port Biosphere hosted an image processing and fauna identification workshop for those participating in the Community Lens project. Thank you to those that came along, it was a fantastic turn out. We should now start to see data on fox activity flowing in, so watch this space. Above and below are some of the images we have been capturing.

Winter Welcome to the Orange-bellied Parrot


Winter sees the return of the critically endangered Orange-bellied Parrot (OBP) to mainland Victoria and South Australia. To welcome the OBP back to our coastline, Western Port Biosphere Reserve hosted an Orange-bellied Parrot Discovery Tour, inviting residents of northern Western Port coastal communities to the free event at Moonlit Sanctuary Wildlife Conservation Park on Friday 1st June 2018.

The OBP Discovery Tour formed the final community event for the Protecting the Ecological Values of the Western Port Ramsar Site project. A five year project, funded by the Australian Government, that has seen Western Port Biosphere Reserve partner with Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority to engage community members to strengthen their knowledge and understanding of wetland values and the threats to the Ramsar site.

The response to the OBP tour was overwhelming with spots on the tour filling rapidly. Thirty community members joined Moonlit Sanctuary staff and other project partners from Parks Victoria and Cardinia Shire on a picture perfect winter’s day.

We met at Moonlit Sanctuary and took a bus down to Warneet boat ramp for a tour of the nearby saltmarsh. The saltmarsh in this area provides prime habitat for the OBP and BirdLife Australia has established a winter survey site there. Unfortunately, given the rarity of the species, it was incredibly unlikely that we would see any OBPs. Nevertheless it was a great opportunity to hear from Parks Victoria Ranger Alisson Bolden about the fantastic work being done by project partners to protect the Ramsar site, plus Ashley Herrod, Avian Team Leader and OBP Specialist Keeper at Moonlit Sanctuary, provided great insight into the ecology of the OBP. It was fascinating to learn about the OBPs migratory behaviour and how our Ramsar site provides valuable habitat for the species. After seeing the habitat in which the birds live in the wild, it was time to meet the birds back at Moonlit Sanctuary.

We were spoilt to an ‘access all areas’ tour of the Moonlit Sanctuary’s OBP captive breeding facility. Moonlit Sanctuary has partnered with other Zoos Victoria facilities to establish a captive population. Their aviaries house 80 OBPs, more than the <50 birds known to be left in the wild. The captive birds provide a safe guard for the species and allow for releases of individuals to boost the wild population. We were also lucky enough to tour Moonlit’s ‘Ranching’ facility. Ranching involves capturing birds in their Tasmanian summer home, flying them to Victoria to spend the winter in captivity and then returning them to Tasmania in spring. This strategy is employed to prevent individuals undertaking the perilous migration themselves and is the latest drastic step taken to save the species. It is heartening to see and learn about the measures being undertaken to save this unique little bird.

A huge thank you to Lisa Tuthill, Life Sciences Manager at Moonlit Sanctuary and Ashley Herrod for supporting the tour and sharing your knowledge we us.

Some of the feedback we received:

“Thank you for organising such a wonderful tour – it was very informative and gratefully appreciated”.

“We really enjoyed the OBP tour along with the Sanctuary, it was a very rewarding day for us”.

“Please pass on our thanks. It was a fantastic day, and thoroughly enjoyed by both of us”.

Northern Western Port Boat Trip

Following on from the PPWCMA Boat Trip last November, here is a link to a video which was filmed on the day: PPWCMA Video

Water Stewardship

Even water stewards have to take holidays! The Water Stewardship Program has been a bit quiet over the last couple of months with some well-earned leave taken by the Project Officer.

Despite this, we have been progressing finalising Site Water Stewardship Plans and conducted another round of training. We have also been developing new project proposals as an extension to our work in the water management space and looking to see what opportunities there are to integrate the principle and objectives into wider land management practices.

Rob McNaught from Boneo Park, who also owns and manages a large section of Tootgarook Swamp alongside their equestrian centre operation, has been very busy and has completed a draft of the Site Water Stewardship Plan for their property. The plan is largely aimed at continuing with the works around vegetation and weed management and some new initiatives to maintain the excellent water quality within the swamp by ensuring run-off and groundwater inputs are protected. To find out more about Rob, see profile in this issue of Connector.

There are several other properties which have plans near completion, but notable amongst these is BlueScope Western Port in Hastings which has completed a final draft of their Site Water Stewardship Plan, which is quite exciting but more on that separately, when it is finally signed off as completed.

We also conducted a training session recently for a number of water stewards, and hosted the Alliance for Water Stewardship who is developing an online tool for informing and assisting water stewards. We are planning another training opportunity soon, so if you wish to start your plan, there is no better way than undertake this training. The session provides an opportunity to learn more about applying Water Stewardship and an intense way to work on your plan and get the bones prepared. You will be working with a Water Steward mentor to help develop and progress the objectives and actions for your Site Water Stewardship Plan.

Let us know if you are interested and we will let you know when the training is occurring!

We are still accepting water stewards into the program within existing or new catchments in order to help you save water, nutrients and money as well as gain continuing environmental improvements, including to water quantity and quality management and biodiversity across the landscape.

If you have an interest in becoming a water steward please contact us!

Lance Lloyd
Western Port Biosphere Water Stewardship Project
Ph. 0412 007 997
[email protected]

Professor Tim Flannery at Literary Festival of Phillip Island

International acclaimed scientist Tim Flannery, from Climate Council will be presenting at the opening night of the Literary Festival of Phillip Island.

We want to get the word out that a Literary Festival is for everyone who loves a story, not just those who like to read & write. This is a festival for anyone who loves a good story – in any form, it could be a book, a film, spoken word, music or through visual art – we’ve made a conscious effort to capture all types of storytelling in this year’s program. We’ve crafted a festival that celebrates local talent, showcases interesting ideas, challenges us to think differently.

Highlights of this year’s program include:

  • Opening night (Friday 27 July) includes a spoken word performance by Briggs, and dedication to former part-time resident of the Island, John Clarke, by Professor Tim Flannery. Prof. Flannery will deliver “The Good News for John’s Birds”, a reference to the birds of Phillip Island, whose habitat John was keen to protect.
  • Authors telling their stories include: Heather Morris (The Tattooist of Auschwitz), Stella Prize shortlisted author Shokoofeh Azar (The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree), and Helen Brown (Bono).
  • Screening of Voyage of the Sun (Saturday 28 July) by Adventurer of the Year Michael Smith about his solo circumnavigation of the globe in an amphibious plane in 2015. Smith who is also owner of the Sun Theatre will be doing a Q&A after the screening.
  • Women By The Sea is Ruby Rees’ (Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries, Picnic At Hanging Rock) debut feature film. Set on Phillip Island, it will be one of the first films made in Australia to be employing an entirely female identifying cast and crew. Rees will talk about trying to put women front and centre of film and TV industry – a chance to own the narrative.
  • This year’s program includes a strong theme of encouraging Aboriginal Australians to tell their stories and to bring many untold histories into the light such as Aunty Fay Muir running an introduction to the Boon Wurrung language; Tunnerminnerwait and Maulboyheener, the story of the first people to be hanged in Melbourne; and a panel discussion between well-known Aboriginal identities Tammy Anderson, Patrice Mahoney and Steve Parker titled: What colour is an Aborigine?

For more information please visit: [email protected]

Stacey Shine

Mornington Peninsula Shire

Nominations open for 2018 Mornington Peninsula Heritage Awards
Mornington Peninsula Heritage Awards provide an opportunity to recognise those in our community who have demonstrated excellence in retention, restoration and interpretation of our heritage places on the peninsula.

Nominations for the 2018 awards are now open and close on Monday 16 July 2018.

While the word ‘heritage’ conjures images of built forms, the scope of heritage goes further to cover landscape, cemeteries, wetlands and significant events or people that have contributed to the longevity of our heritage.

Our awards feature a range of categories including:

Creative Reuse of a Heritage Place
Adaptive reuse is a process that changes a disused or redundant place to a different purpose. Nominations will be considered that demonstrate adaptive reuse of a heritage place having minimal impact on its significance and setting.

Restoration of a Heritage Place
Best practice restoration work that returns fabric back to a known earlier state or conserves integrity. Nominations will be considered that demonstrate application of the Burra Charter including Built form, Landscape, Wetlands, Cemeteries, Monuments or Heritage Gardens.

Excellence in Interpretive Signage
To recognise Interpretive Signage of a high quality that acknowledges a person or place that has contributed to the Heritage of the Mornington Peninsula.

Specialist Heritage Trade Skills
Recognition of tradespersons using specialist skills, traditional methods and craftsmanship to a very high standard.

Sustainability and/or Greening of a Heritage Place
The objective of this award is to increase awareness of the contribution to the environmental sustainability of heritage places. Nominations will be considered for works that demonstrate a range of practices that result in positive impacts.

New work responsive to Heritage Places
A new category for 2018 which acknowledges work of a current design that responds to a heritage place or area.

To nominate:

  • Download a form from;
  • Request a copy by phoning the National Trust Mornington Peninsula Branch on 0407 099 855; or Mornington Peninsula Shire on 5950 1953 or 5950 1249.

Awards will be announced on 31 August 2018.

The Mornington Peninsula Heritage Award program is a joint project of the National Trust Mornington Peninsula Branch and Mornington Peninsula Shire.

Mornington Peninsula Shire acknowledges and pays respect to the Bunurong/Boon Wurrung people, the traditional custodians of these lands and waters.

Author: Belinda Walters, Communications Officer

Frankston City Council


Woolworths, Coles and IGA are about to cease providing single-use plastic shopping bags. This change will come into effect from 20 June for Woolworths, 30 June for IGA and 1 July for Coles. Shoppers are encouraged to bring their own reusable bags, in order to reduce the generation of plastic waste.

Here are some tips to help you prepare:

  • Find a reusable bag that works for you – Heavy duty gusseted or flat bottom bags are well suited to heavy items, while lightweight reusable bags are a great back-up when carried in your day bag or handbag
  • Ensure you have enough bags to meet your shopping needs, so that you don’t get caught out
    Store your reusable bags where you will see them, such as by the door or in the car
  • Keep your reusable bags clean, by washing them regularly
  • If you forget to BYO bag, check with the store to see if they have a spare packaging box you can use instead

Plastic – disposal options:
For information on disposing of plastic visit:

Author: Frankston City Council Website

Cardinia Shire Council


Outlined in Cardinia Shire Council’s Aspirational Energy Transition Plan are organisational and community carbon emission reduction goals. Council’s Energy Transition Plan includes actions towards achieving organisational targets of zero nett carbon emissions and a reduction in community emissions of at least 36 per cent per capita by 2024.

The journey to becoming a zero emissions organisation began with the installation of a small 4.5kW photovoltaic system at Emerald Museum in 2014. Since then, Cardinia Shire Council has continually installed solar electricity systems on the rooftops of suitable Council buildings and community facilities
throughout the Shire. In November 2017, Council completed the installation of the Shire’s 1000th solar panel at the Emerald Library Complex. This milestone installation brought Cardinia Council’s shire-wide photovoltaic capacity to 266kW. The installed capacity currently supports the reduction of approximately 400 tonnes of carbon dioxide annually, which is equivalent to the annual emissions of 100 average Australian cars.

Forthcoming installations, including an 84kW system at the Pakenham library complex and a 30kW system at the Beaconsfield Community Centre, are set to increase Council’s installed solar energy capacity to 380kW. Through the investment and installation of solar photovoltaic systems, Cardinia Shire Council will continue to pursue sustainable clean energy pathways towards achieving the community and organisational emissions reduction goals of the Aspirational Energy Transition Plan.

Author: Catherine Hodgins, Communications Team Leader, Cardinia Shire Council

City of Casey


The Winter Arts Festival celebrates the arts in the City of Casey and runs every June, July and August. The festival gives local artists and arts groups exposure and recognition while encouraging the community to participate and appreciate the fantastic local arts in Casey. Each year, visual artists, bands, choirs and performers participate in this exciting program by holding concerts, exhibitions, open studios, workshops and more. The Winter Arts Festival is an excellent spring-board to promote your arts practice to the Casey community.

The City of Casey is celebrating the sixteenth anniversary of this popular program in 2018. If you are thinking about holding an arts related event or activity this year, hold it in one of these months and be included in the Winter Arts Festival!

Click this link to find out details of each event: 2018 Winter Arts Festival

Author: City of Casey Website

Bass Coast Shire


Come and see some of the most beautiful, innovative and affordable art and craft works by the local people of the Bass Coast.

On display and for sale are works from our award winning photographers, painters, mixed media artists and woodcrafters.

Our shop sells beautiful handmade crafts, we have everything from knitted baby wear, to souvenir items locally made, wood tuned bowls, silk scarfs, handmade bags, handmade cards, sculptures, ceramics, jewellery and much, much more.

There is something for everyone at the Phillip Island Gallery.
We are located inside the Cowes Cultural Centre
91 Thompson Avenue, Cowes, Phillip Island
Phone us on 03 5952 5252
or email us at [email protected]

We are open 11.00am – 3.00pm Daily Easter – Cup Week-end – From the Saturday of Cup Weekend until Good Friday we are open 10.00am – 4.00pm

Author: Phillip Island Gallery

In the spotlight…


Can you give us a little bit of information about yourself, Boneo Park, Tootgarook Swamp and why water is important to your property?

The Mornington Peninsula Shire for some years has been preparing its strategy for the Tootgarook Wetland and In May this year its management plan was released. In January this year the Shire, to its credit, compulsorily acquired 92 Elizabeth Avenue, Capel Sound from a developer. This property of nearly 30 hectares is a key part of the Wetland and abuts our property. Thus this wetland is very much in the spotlight for the Shire. The Shire’s actions are very appropriate for this nationally significant wetland.

My actions have been supportive of the Shire’s strategy, but largely independent. We have been in Boneo since 1986 on a 20 hectare property. The Tootgarook Wetland abuts this property, and in 2001 we acquired about 60% of the wetland and developed our strategy in the years following. The usual issues for a significant property such as ours are weeds and risk of development. We have dealt with these issues by placing a Trust for Nature conservation covenant on 200 hectares of our wetland and Moonah woodland. The property is now in very good condition, well managed, and protected into the future.

Why did Boneo Park choose to participate in the Biosphere’s Water Stewardship program (that is, why water stewardship important to you)?

Today the groundwater is literally good enough to drink. Total dissolved solids are only 2400 parts per million, well within the 3500 ppm allowed for bottled mineral water. We want to keep it that way, and to monitor any changes over the long term. Melbourne Water has placed bores on our property and elsewhere to monitor the groundwater, but frustratingly chooses only to measure groundwater levels, not quality.

Water quality and toxicity should be measured and I plan to do it myself as part of the Water Stewardship program.

Water toxicity is important to us for two key reasons:

  • The Tootgarook Wetland is a Groundwater Dependent Ecosystem. It depends on the groundwater for its health.
  • Boneo Park is a major equestrian centre, running national and international events such as the Australian Championships in both Show Jumping and Dressage. The thousands of visiting horses each year drink the groundwater, so it must remain potable for horses.

What are some of the major challenges you hope to address as part of your water stewardship program?

The only likely threat to the Tootgarook Wetland on our property is water toxicity. This may be caused by someone in the Industrial Estate releasing a huge dose of poison in one go, but is more likely to be caused over many years by a build-up of chemicals entering the groundwater upstream from a market garden or golf course.

Ongoing monitoring of water quality in the Tootgarook Wetland does not seem like a major challenge, but it is still not being done. This monitoring is my main challenge which I want addressed as part of the program. The results of the monitoring may lead to other challenges, but let’s hope for the best that all is good!

What benefits do you hope to realise for Boneo and Tootgarook Swamp, the local community and the catchment?

Our Trust for Nature conservation covenant is the largest in the greater Melbourne area, and it has focused a lot of interest in the Tootgarook Wetland, resulting in the Shire’s management plan which in turn has focused further interest. Much of the attention has been on the more traditional issues of protecting the wetland from development and removing weeds. The Shire has not significantly addressed the groundwater on which the wetland so critically depends. I hope my actions and the Water Stewardship program will lead to a much greater understanding of this groundwater.

The Tootgarook Wetland is a Groundwater Dependent Ecosystem. We must look after the groundwater.

Dolphin Research Institute


An exciting new chapter in the Dolphin Research Institute’s successful ‘i sea, i care’ program began this year. We now have passionate Marine Ambassadors in local secondary schools.

The secondary program is for Year 10 students who have a strong interest in science and are considering a career in marine science. Importantly, it is an alternative to work experience, which we are often contacted about but unable to support. So far, six schools and a total of 39 students are working with, and being mentored by, our Education and Research staff.

During the year-long program, students investigate, with the support of their teacher and DRI staff, a marine-based issue about which they are passionate. The students then develop audience-appropriate, evidence-based presentations. These will be shared with their peers and their local community, and beyond.

The Ambassadors take part in workshops across the year. The most recent workshops introduced them to how scientists monitor dolphins from land. They learnt how to use marine binoculars and record sighting data. This was then put to the test during a field session at Schnapper Pt, Mornington in search of the resident common dolphins. Here are some of the new Ambassadors trying out their binocular skills!

This initiative is funded by the Port Phillip Bay Fund. We aim to continue to expand the secondary Ambassador program; we rely on our supporters for future funding of this and our other education and research programs.


The family-friendly ‘Island Whale Festival’ is on again! Join us at Phillip Island on Friday July 6 to Sunday July 8 (this is the middle weekend of the school holidays). Learn about whales, their migration routes and a whole lot more.

Our amazing inflatable whale will be at the marquee at the Cowes Cultural Centre every day – with sessions at 1pm, 2:30pm and 4pm. Book for one of the FREE 45 minute sessions, and climb into a whale!
Or try and spot a real whale on Saturday and Sunday from one of the Island’s lookouts at Cape Woolamai (9:30am) and Pyramid Rock (11:30am). DRI’s researchers will be there to inform and inspire you – and tell the difference between a spouting whale and a wave.


Author: Jenny Parsons, DRI

Royal Botanic Gardens


Balee Koolin Bubup Playgroup
Cranbourne Gardens welcomes Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander families and children to join the unique Balee Koolin Bubup playgroup. Providing a cultural learning environment for early childhood, the program focuses on literacy, traditional culture and Boon-Wurrung language within a beautiful bushland setting. Connect to country, celebrate culture and hear Indigenous children’s stories. Uncover plants and creatures that live in the bush, learn to identify animal tracks, and experience the joy of playing in nature.
Stringybark Picnic Area
Tuesdays (school term)
Duration: 90 minutes
Suitable for 0 to 5 years, older children welcome
Bookings essential. Visit or call 9252 2429 to book.

Koolin-ik ba Kirrip-buluk (Family and Friends) NAIDOC 2018 – Because of her, we can!
Celebrate the invaluable contribution that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women have made, and continue to make, to our community’s rich history and nation. In the spirit of Reconciliation, local community provide their support in sharing this Koolin ngargee (family celebration) NAIDOC event with the community.
This year’s NAIDOC theme Because of Her, We Can! invites Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people to come together to celebrate, learn and engage in the day’s cultural activities. Gather for a Tanderrum Smoking Ceremony and Aboriginal flag raising ceremony followed by traditional stories. Join in cultural and family workshops including weaving, tool making and bush tucker tours, learn some hip hop moves from Indigenous dancers, and enjoy a complimentary barbecue lunch.
Ian Potter Lakeside Precinct, Australian Garden
Wednesday 11 July
10am to 2pm, drop in anytime
Suitable for all ages
Hosted by Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria in partnership with local Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal organisations.

Winter Plant Sale
Have you spied a plant growing in Cranbourne Gardens that you would love to see flourishing in your home? Select from a whole range of species, many of which you will find in the Australian Garden. Prices start from as little as $2.
Plant sale
Australian Garden
Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 July
10am to 4pm
Presented by Cranbourne Friends.

Garden Explorer
Take a seat and enjoy the live commentary as you wind your way around the 15-hectare Australian Garden in open-air comfort. Purchase a daily pass and hop on and off as you please.
Daily tour
Australian Garden
Monday to Sunday
10am to 4pm
Duration: 20 to 25 mins
$10 Adult
$8 Concession and Child
$25 Family (2 Adults and 2 Children)

Snapshots of Australia Walking Tour
Travel through the landscapes of Australia with an experienced guide while taking in the sights, sounds and smells of this unique continent. This tour provides you with a snapshot of the very best of the Australian Garden.
Daily tour
Meet at the Visitor Centre
Monday to Sunday
Duration: 60 mins
$7.50 Adult
$6.50 Concession and Child

Garden Explorer and Snapshots of Australia Walking Tour Pass
Enjoy the best of both worlds with a guided walking tour and a daily pass for the Garden Explorer.
Daily tour
Meet at the Visitor Centre
Monday to Sunday
$14 Adult
$11.50 Concession and Child

And upcoming events to be held at the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria, Melbourne

  • Little Seeds: Early Years Nature Play and Gardening Program
  • Circus Oz – Precarious
  • Spend a Day at the Gardens
  • Storm
  • Koolin Ngargee (Family Celebration) NAIDOC 2018 – Because of her, we can!
  • Visit during NAIDOC Week
  • Wangka Kutjara, Tjukurpa Kutju
  • Story-Catching: Mini Book Making with Trace Balla
  • Crawl Me Blood
  • Harp in the Gardens: Nature’s Inspirations
  • ClimateWatch Walk
  • Extraordinary Trees Walk
  • Open House Melbourne
  • Starry Southern Skies
  • Guilfoyle’s Volcano Tours
  • Origami Workshops
  • Card Making with Plant Materials
  • Aboriginal Heritage Walk
  • Garden Explorer
  • Garden Discovery Tours
  • New Shoots – A Garden of Poems
  • Punting on the Lake

See or call 0481 455 410 for more information

Author: Nigel

Mornington Peninsula Landcare Network


The MPLN will soon have a custom-built tool trailer (via $10,000 grant from ESSO) and an amplifier with microphones (Dept. of Social Services (Aust. Govt.), all of which can be borrowed by Landcare groups. Stay tuned for details. Committee members of each Landcare group will soon receive invites to a series of capacity building workshops aimed to assist project managers, as part of our DELWP’s ‘Community Skills Development’ initiative. Check out the most recent Landcare Magazine #72 for some interesting articles on monitoring, including a summary of ‘Vegetation quality assessment’, a useful tool for visually representing the quality of remnant vegetation areas developed by National Trust and used by Gidja Walker for many projects including our ‘Greens Bush to Arthurs Seat Biolink’.


We are grateful for the kind assistance we’ve received from so many organisations assisting with installing 13,000 tubestock this season. On Saturday, guides, scouts and cubs gathered at one of the GB2AS properties to install around 1000 plants. I’m looking forward to presenting ‘Visually representing change in short-term on ground projects’ at the ‘Our Catchments, Our Communities’ Summit in Geelong next Thursday.

Thank you to the following organisations for their assistance with planting in May:

  • Chisholm Institute
  • Padua Rosebud
  • Scouts, Cubs & Guides of the Peninsula
  • Seawinds Nursery volunteers

If you know of any organisations who might like to come along to a planting day, or if you would like to assist, please contact: [email protected] Ph: 0408 213 079


PPWCMA recently hosted an engaging workshop ‘Connecting Youth to Nature’, with speakers including:

  • Chris McCormack, Managing Director, ‘Remember the Wild’
  • Kathleen Brack, Regional Landcare Program Officer, West Gippsland CMA
  • Marijke deBever-Price, President, Western Port Catchment Landcare Network

Here are some gems I picked up:

  • Facebook is still the best medium to reach young people in terms of return for time and effort, especially when you’re organising events
  • You need to be consistent – post 1-2 times a week (and while we’re on the topic, please ‘Like’ MPLN’s Facebook ‘mplandcare’)
  • Be timely with your events – link into larger events, consider needs of target audience
  • Consider why you want to engage with young people. 18-25 year olds are unlikely to join your committee, recent retirees are more likely
  • Don’t single out young people at your events and especially don’t jump on them to do your social media!
  • Appeal to what matters to young people hedonic (immediate gratification), gain (experience for the future) and normative (what we think we should do)
  • Don’t guilt trip or terrify. Tell stories (who was involved, why were they doing it, what were the results).
  • Don’t assume knowledge.

Google ‘Intrepid Landcare’ for more information on this exciting initiative.


If you have a story that showcases the Landcare approach to natural resource management or sustainable agriculture, we invite you to submit an abstract.

With the theme ‘Landcare – Building a Better Tomorrow’, we are seeking presentations that fit the following stream topics:

  • Sustainable agriculture – innovation and conservation in a changing landscape
  • Community in action – grassroots with a purpose
  • Partnerships – collaboration for successful outcomes
  • Environment – improving and protecting our natural assets

Submissions close 27 June 2018

Program and Abstract Submission information at:

J. Salter, Landcare Facilitator

South East Water

South East Water steps up sustainability in national parks with new solar sewer technology

South East Water has installed new solar-powered sewer systems at Koonya Beach and Portsea Ocean beach on the Mornington Peninsula, providing environmentally-friendly toilet facilities for beachgoers.

In partnership with Parks Victoria, South East Water has upgraded the toilets at these two sites to a system which runs on 100 per cent sustainable energy.

With the help of a $1.2million commitment from the State Government, South East Water has now connected seven sites along the national park’s main sewer system with pressure sewers. Installations connected to mains power have been completed at Arthurs Seat, Sorrento Surf Lifesaving Club, Coolart Homestead, Rye Back Beach and All Smiles Café at Sorrento Back beach.

The installation of pressure sewer systems replaces ageing septic systems exceeding capacity due to increasing visitor numbers. The new system will eliminate the risk of pollution and help maintain a clean and healthy national park.

“The installation of solar powered pressure sewer systems on the Mornington Peninsula not only delivers environmental and cost benefits to Parks Victoria, but is also an important step forward in improving the liveability and sustainability of our communities,” said Terri Benson, South East Water’s Managing Director.

The new system uses modern technology and has an increased capacity to deal with the growing number of visitors.

South East Water developed the OneBox® technology behind the pressure sewer systems which is manufactured locally. This technology allows South East Water to monitor the sewer system in real time and control system flows during peak periods. The solar system and batteries are also a local product manufactured by Magefekt in Dandenong.

The off-grid solar system provides an opportunity to take this technology to remote areas of Victoria where limited or no electricity supply is available.

Author: Andrea Reichwald, Communications and Media Manager

Upcoming Events

Permaculture Design Course
Date: Various, commencing on Sunday 1 July

The Community Grocer Pakenham
Date: Various, commencing on Thursday 5 July

Parks Victoria Junior Rangers
Date: Saturday 2 July

Mornington Racecourse Market
Date: Sunday 8 July

Rose Pruning and Care
Date: Tuesday 10 July

Family Waste and Recycling Session
Date: Saturday 14 July

Produce Swap at Myuna Farm
Date: Various, commencing on Saturday 14 July

Mornington Botanical Rose Gardens Annual Pruning Weekend
Date: Saturday 14 July

Seaford Farmers Market
Date: Sunday 15 July

Selandra Community Garden
Date: Various, commencing on Saturday 21 July

Rose Pruning Demonstration
Date: Saturday 21 July

Literary Festival of Phillip Island
Date: Friday 27 July

National Tree Day 2018
Date: Sunday 29 July

Learn to Graft Fruit Trees
Date: Saturday 4 August

Science in the Park: Wildlife Counts 2018
Date: Sunday 12 August

Community Waste and Recycling Information Session
Date: Thursday 30 August

APS Native Plant Sale
Date: Saturday 1 September

Raising Green Kids Workshop
Date: Thursday 6 September

Green Film – Bag It
Date: Wednesday 12 September

Buy Nothing New Month Presentation
Date: Monday 17 September

Kids Craft – Create a Community Recycled Art Piece
Date: Wednesday 26 September