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EcoUpdate: March 2022

Happy Eucalypt Day Everyone!

We hope you enjoy this month’s news and views from around Port Stephens. Why not start planning for a community micro-forest in your neck of the woods? See below for more details.

The Autumn events calendar is filling up fast – scroll down to see a smorgasbord of tantalising online events or in the flesh.

Thanks to those 6 lovely people who gave me their feedback on EcoUpdate. I could use a few more responses just to be sure it’s as good as they say! Tell me what you think – just 3 questions in 30secs! Tell me now

Much Appreciated

Editor, EcoUpdate

If you missed previous editions of EcoUpdate, you can read them here. Please forward this one to your friends and don’t forget to sign up HERE.

Listen to the Voices of Woodville and Wallalong

This local community continues to be faced with rezoning proposals in the areas around the Williams River floodplain in the western Port Stephens LGA.

Vice-President of, Margarete Ritchie, shares with us serious concerns that more and more farmland is being carved off into smaller lots making it possible for rezoning – threatening local livelihoods as well as 268 hollow-bearing trees and 95 koala feed trees on the site.

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Shorebirds of Port Stephens – an introduction

When we think of our local shorebirds, species such as the ubiquitous silver gull usually come to mind. However, the term ‘shorebirds’, also known as waders, refers to a specific group of birds defined by their shared morphology, ecology and taxonomy.

Neil Fraser introduces us to the shorebirds of Port Stephens and gives us some tips on how and where to spot these unobtrusive birds which are so well adapted within their environment that we rarely give them a second glance.

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Sustainable Futures Festival

A festival of inspiration, innovation & conversation

St Philip’s Christian College, Salamander Bay

11 September 2022

We hope you don’t mind waiting a little longer for EcoNetwork’s inaugural festival – we have a new date, a new venue and are thrilled to welcome our major new partner Hunter Region Landcare Network!

Read the latest Sustainable Futures Festival News

This Festival is supported by Hunter Local Land Services through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

Hands up if you feed wild birds in your garden?

Don’t feel guilty – you’re not the only one! It is estimated that at least one in three Australian households feed birds regularly or occasionally, whether they admit it or not!

In an ideal world, it might be better not to feed wild birds – but many people will do it anyway, so we provide you with some new findings about this contentious issue to help you decide if and how you can feed responsibly.

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A helping hand at Kingsley Headland

Join the Friends of Tomaree National Park to help rejuvenate Kingsley Headland. Come for one or both mornings, on Friday 8 and Saturday 9 April 2022. Bookings are necessary so reserve your spot today

This is a great opportunity to help repair environmental damage on the site, not only in removing highly invasive weeds, but also planting in the vicinity. And what better way to meet up with other caring people, outdoors in a safe airy environment. 

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How will the Endangered listing save koalas? 

Last month EcoNetwork welcomed – with reservations – the Australian government’s decision to upgrade the conservation status of koalas from vulnerable to endangered in NSW, the ACT and Queensland.

‘The real test is whether government and local councils are prepared to refuse development applications that threaten to destroy koala habitat and corridors‘ said EcoNetwork president Iain Watt.

EcoNetwork’s special interest group, Koala Koalition, was also cautiously optimistic. Carmel Northwood said that ‘the NSW State government is policy-bound to adopt the federal decision on the listing, but will also need legislative backing for any realistic change to occur.’

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Enova Energy receives 5-star green ranking

Greenpeace has ranked Enova Energy, EcoNetwork’s favoured electricity retailer, equal first among 48 suppliers in its 2022 Green Electricity Guide.

Anyone switching their energy supplier to Enova will help EcoNetwork Port Stephens with its grass-roots projects and campaigns. Each customer making the switch just needs to use the code EcoNetwork50 when they sign up and Enova will contribute $50 to EcoNetwork.

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Get involved: Finding diverse new members and being inclusive

Join Alison Rogers for the second of her Get Involved series discussing how to find and engage with new volunteers, bringing diverse knowledge and experience to your organisation.

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Update – Tomaree Biodiversity Corridor

Issued by the National Parks Association of NSW

Last year we joined with EcoNetwork Port Stephens and 10 other community organisations to request the Minister for the Environment, Matt Kean MP, to secure the transfer of almost 500 ha of unmanaged Crown land to Tomaree National Park. The proposal forms a logical east-west connection between Tomaree NP and Tilligerry Nature Reserve.

In his reply, the Minister indicated that the land is currently subject to undetermined Aboriginal land claims, and that the Government generally does not deal in land subject to a claim. However, he also indicated that an interest has been expressed in adding certain land at Fisherman’s Bay to Tomaree NP, which is currently held by the NSW Land and Housing Corporation. The Minister has asked NPWS to follow this matter up. Source: Nature News Hunter Region | 2022 No. 1 | 23 Feb

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EcoNetwork Port Stephens

Our Vision: Ecologically sustainable communities existing in harmony with the natural environment.

Our Purpose: To support our members and to educate and advocate on environmental issues that impact Port Stephens communities. : : facebook

Published: 14 Mar 2022