Boomerang Bags is a community driven initiative tackling plastic pollution at a grassroots level. The initiative works to mobilise communities to make re-useable ‘Boomerang Bags’ using recycled materials, which are made available to the wider community as a sustainable alternative to plastic bags.
Each Boomerang Bag is handmade by community groups, schools and volunteers from the local community, using donated second-hand materials, keeping the initiative local and sustainable. Regular ‘working bees’ provide a platform to engage and connect all demographics of the community in a positive environmental initiative, whilst promoting and encouraging community connectedness and socialisation. They also provide a hands-on learning environment allowing volunteers, community groups, and school students to gain practical skills which will give them independence and benefit the community in the long term.
The Boomerang Bags are then provided to the local community through market stalls, businesses, pop-up events and councils as a means to start a conversation about plastic, and encourage the sustainable behaviour of reuse.
To get involved in our local group please get in touch with Libby and stay peeled for information on our first “Landcare Community Sewing Bee”.
For more information about the story behind this amazing initiative go to the Boomerang Bag website here.
The beautiful superb parrot is a much-loved threatened woodland bird that needs our help to protect and restore its habitat. The NSW Government’s Saving Our Species (SoS) program is providing nearly $400,000 to help farmers and land managers look after hollow-bearing trees and woodland vegetation and to replant trees and shrubs for the future, which will also contribute to sustainable farming ecosystems.
Funding will be available to protect living and dead large hollow-bearing eucalypt trees that provide nest sites for superb parrots. Funding can also support planting new paddock trees and shrubs and restoring woodlands to increase future habitat and landscape connectivity for superb parrots and many other threatened woodland fauna species. This community-based project adds to the work already being done by farmers and Landcare groups who have planted hundreds of thousands of trees and shrubs in paddocks, along fence lines and creeks and rivers.
The NSW government recently launched the NSW Biodiversity and Conservation Trust, a new approach to land management and conservation in NSW. You can find out more here: https://www.landmanagement.nsw.gov.au/nsw-biodiversity-conservation-trust/
If you want to find out more about volunteering and research projects related to superb parrots and other threatened species, you can find out more here: http://www.environment.nsw.gov.au/topics/animals-and-plants/threatened-species/help-save-our-threatened-species
Landholders who are interested in helping the superb parrot and receiving funding and assistance can contact the following project partners:
Superb Parrot Project Team
Perfect superb parrot habitat - a hollow-bearing tree in Boorowa. Photo: Rainer Rehwinkel/OEH
The Grass Roots initiative has been established with the assistance of the Lake Cargelligo Local Landcare Coordinator (LLC) Andrew Lucas. It is a community-driven partnership between LachLandcare Inc., Lower Lachlan Community Services, Skillset Environment and Murrin Bridge Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC).
Grass Roots aims to build on the successful elements of the Green Army model in Lake Cargelligo and Murrin Bridge by establishing a social enterprise business which can meet the multiple needs of a broad range of sectors, such as land and water management, conservation and monitoring, and agriculture. To date, Grass Roots has been contracted by National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS), Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), and Western Local Land Services (LLS) as the initiative continues to build capacity.
The participants so far are gaining invaluable experience and on the job training in biodiversity and habitat restoration, wetland monitoring and water delivery, biosecurity, revegetation and other natural resource management activities, while benefiting from Traditional Owner mentoring.
It is envisioned that Grass Roots will transition to become part of a business arm of the Murrin Bridge Local Aboriginal Land Council (LALC).
This will create employment opportunities and career pathways for local people.
A series of fruit tree care and pruning workshops were rolled out across four districts in late July and early August this year. Young District Landcare, Weddin Landcare, Lake Cowal Foundation and Temora Shire Council were supported by LachLandcare through the Local Landcare Coordinator Initiative in the delivery of the workshops, which were held in Maimuru, Grenfell, West Wyalong and Temora and were attended by over 120 people.
This project is designed to provide habitat for up to 15 species of microbat through the installation of roosting boxes, the provision of future habitat through tree and shrub planting, and also aims to increase community awareness.
Microbats play an important role in ecosystem services by eating a variety of insects, many of which are pests to people and livestock such as mosquitoes, moths, beetles, caterpillars and termites. On a single night, microbats can eat up to 40% of their own body weight.
Microbats are facing the same threats that many other woodland species face - habitat loss and fragmentation. In 2014, Young District Landcare received funding from Riverina Local Land Services to undertake our project, Microbats in the Young Shire. The project is designed to provide habitat for up to 15 species of microbat through the installation of roosting boxes, the provision of future habitat through tree and shrub planting, and also aims to increase community awareness.
To date, the project has achieved many milestones. We have installed 140 microbat roosting boxes at various locations across Young. Planting days at Chance Gully and Burrandong Creek have provided future habitat, and a plant giveaway donated 1000 trees and shrubs to the Young Community. Four interpretive signs have been installed at public locations and a factsheet Wildlife of the Young Shire was produced.
We also held ‘Bat Night’ with an expert speaker that provided information on microbats and included a walk along Burrandong Creek where a demonstration was provided using an Anabat detector. Anabat detectors monitor the echolocation calls of bats to determine species identification. Further funding allowed Young District Landcare to purchase two Anabat detectors and provide training to 10 of our members to enable ongoing monitoring of the roosting boxes.
We have achieved a high level of engagement with the Young community over the course of this project. Our involvement with 10 schools in the Shire has been ongoing, and our interpretive signs at various points in Young have been well received. Improved understanding about the importance of microbats for biodiversity is evident with the high landholder turnout that has occurred at all our microbat events.