Mid North Coast Branch began a membership drive following concern at stagnating numbers, and over the last 18 months we have succeeded in increasing our membership substantially. This is mainly due to developing a good working relationship with local media and publicising our activities in local newspapers. Each new activity program is initially written up as an interesting article, and individual activities are publicised in weekly ‘What’s On’ columns. Copies of our programs are placed in the NPWS District Office, libraries, neighbourhood centres and shops specialising in outdoor/sporting goods.
Our branch formed an alliance with an outdoor adventure club run by a Taree business, which publicised a meeting for those interested in outdoor activities. A number of NPA members attended the meeting, talked about NPA and distributed programs. The club now includes our activities in each of its publications.
One of our walks leaders has been organising full pack walks in conjunction with this club, and she has recently run a full pack walk for families. These have also resulted in increased community interest and more members.
As new people come along to our activities, our walks leaders encourage them to join and also to extend friendship to them – there is a substantial social aspect to all our activities. We also run a number of social events – such as theatre parties – which give people the chance to socialise and get to know other members. Our program includes really special activities, such as our annual weekend in the Lighthouse Keepers Cottage at Smoky Cape Lighthouse.
We are still looking for more ideas so please, other branches, let us know if you have any!
Mid North Coast Branch
NOTICE OF AGM
Notice is hereby given that
the Annual General Meeting of the National Parks Association of NSW will
be held on Saturday
It will be held in conjunction with the August State Council meeting. Any members of the Association may attend and are encouraged to do so. You will be made most welcome.
Wheeler Creek Survey
More than 55 volunteer scientists and field workers took part in the first phase of our biodiversity survey at Wheeler Creek Valley. The relatively undisturbed catchment of Wheeler Creek feeds into Narrabeen Lagoon via South Creek, and is part of a significant mosaic of bushland from Little Willandra Road north-west across the Wakehurst Parkway to Garigal National Park.
The autumn survey session will be followed up in spring (14 to 18 September), and there was a May field study trip by the Sydney Fungal Study Group.
Under Ray Mjadwesch as Scientific Leader, 17 sites were selected for detailed vegetation quadrat and fauna observations. These were complemented by a line of pitfall, Elliott and bandicoot traps in the densely vegetated upper creek area, plus opportunistic records, spotlighting and an evening of sound recordings.
Several plants and animals of local significance, some now rare and endangered, were recorded, as well as species characteristic of coastal sandstone and heath such as the bandicoot, bushrat, skinks and a nocturnal golden-crowned snake. Much of the bush is in remarkably good heart with limited weed invasion except near specific developments and disturbances and the informal track network, which is also a focus of erosion and vehicle damage that intrudes into the swamps.
The upper part of the creek itself was judged near pristine; however, a serious decline in macroinvertebrates occurs downstream of urban housing developments. Lower down, Galaxias maculatus (jollytail) were found trapped in the creek by nearby building works. Their lifecycle normally included travel down to Narrabeen Lake with young whitebait returning up the creek.
Preliminary conclusions indicate that the bushland values of Wheeler Creek Valley are well worth maintaining and that most of the adverse changes could be addressed through an appropriate management regime.
An interim verbal report of the findings has been presented to representatives of the Department of Land and Water Conservation, Warringah Shire Council and the NPWS, to be followed up as the data is processed and refined.
A photographic record is on the website at wwildlife.com
Biodiversity Survey Leader
Introduce a New Member Competition
Thank you to more than 100 people who showed their support of NPA by taking part in our competition. The prize draw took place on 9 April in the NPA Office, and the lucky winners are:
Anne Brian – Solar Springs Health Retreat weekend for 2
Hope Campbell – 2 x 2000km Aussie Passes from Greyhound Pioneer
Cindy Dietrich – $300 Travel Voucher from McCafferty’s Coaches
Andrea Lang – All Seasons Premier Menzies Hotel night for 2
Gail Hird – 2 BridgeClimbs of the Sydney Harbour Bridge
Kathy Hart – Hoyts VIP Pack including 10 free movie tickets
Charlotte Kirtin – Jurlique Rose Indulgence Pack
Sharron Fairall – The Body Shop Lemongrass gift basket
A very big thank you to all our sponsors!