From the Editor

Welcome to the winter newsletter, whether you are receiving it in the post or by email. Remember that you can also access  previous newsletters via our website [but you already know that because you are reading this!]

Please note that it’s time to renew your membership, via the form included. Also note the increase in fees to cover our extra insurance and postage costs.

Please check if we have your correct email address so we can contact you with late news.

This issue is missing a report from our Ranger in Charge, Dave Roberts, who is just so busy at the moment. But  we do have a report from our meeting with him in July and also a comprehensive update from Tammy Schoo.

There is also no Advisory Group Report as we have not held a meeting since the last newsletter. The next meeting is in August  with a … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, From the Editor

Grampians NP Community July Update

Tammy Schoo, Team Leader – Visitors and Community Grampians Gariwerd National Park has sent out a comprehensive report to the local community, and I am sure it is of real interest to those of you living further afield.

News in General July 2016
We welcome Ben Thomas to our team in the Role of Grampians Ark Coordinator. Ben brings a wealth of knowledge to the role after holding numerous biodiversity roles with organisations such as DELWP and CVA. The ‘new Ben’ replaces Ben Holmes who has moved to take on a rewilding project in the Little Desert National Park with Conservation Volunteers Australia.

Snow! Yes, we certainly know it’s winter. While it’s not completely uncommon, snow usually falls when the state is at its coldest. The Grampians are certainly very pretty covered in snow and it is a spectacle that many local residents love to see. We do ask that … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, From Parks Victoria

Meeting at Parks Office with Parks Representatives – 24/06/16

Rod Thompson

On the last Friday in June 2016, FOGG’s members had their annual catch up with Park Management. It was attended by 8 members and 3 rangers, Dave Roberts, Tammy and Ryan.

We were given a basic rundown of the structure of the management of the park, consisting of 2 teams. A park management team which includes Tammy, Ryan, Mark who have all been involved with FOGGs and our activities over the course of the last year. The park team has a total of 14 people under Dave himself. This is complemented by a Fire Management team of 13 staff. The two teams try to work together to manage various impacts, but have to diverge in some areas too. Caity will most likely be continuing in her position as the volunteer coordinator. This is 97% sure but Conservation Volunteers Australia need funding to match Parks Vic. who have funding … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report, From Parks Victoria, Meeting Report

What the Prez Sez

Rod Thompson, President

I am breaking a little from my normal format of the president’s report this issue. There were many things raised in our meeting with the chief Ranger Dave Roberts that I wanted to expand on, and felt for the benefit of those who could not attend, I would use my column to do this. That means less rant and more information this quarter. Thats my intention anyway. But I might slip a little.

Fire management is well resourced due to govt. push at the moment, but not other areas of park management. In general across the staff long term stability has been consistent. However older staff are retiring, some will be replaced some not. This gives the park a balance of new enthusiastic and experienced staff. Unfortunately staff levels are declining, and responsibilities are  increasing, so they have to prioritise. Cleaning toilets etc must now be performed … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, President Report

Geology Day in May


Wendy Bedggood

Nearly thirty turned up to the Mural room to hear Dr Ross Cayley give a presentation titled ‘Geology of the Grampians – A 400 million year plus history and why geology has worldwide implications.’P

The Grampians Geology has been studied in detail over the past 15 plus years by using many new technologies allowing a more accurate picture of how it was formed. The area was mapped chemically and physically and using ‘total intensity and residual magnetic mapping’ a picture of the underground rock formations was created. The chemical mapping and physical mapping came up with the same pictures.  Some of the detailed studies on small scale have been extrapolated to the large scale giving a picture of the Grampians and surrounding areas and even what was happening on the rest of the continent. Mapping the Geology of the Grampians even has broarder implications. The fact the … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report

Bird Observing in the Grampians

JanBert Brouwer

The joint outing with the Birdlife Horsham branch on Sunday July 3rd started with a bleak weather outlook following rain and low lying clouds. Not something that is likely to make the birds put on an active show. However a large-turn out of bird observers often means many keen eyes to detect birdlife.

The Birdlife group always prepares their trips very thoroughly with a reconnaissance visit preceding the outing to find interesting birds. Tim Mintern and Ian Morgan had recently sighted emu wrens near the air strip in the western part of the park but these birds proved to be too elusive for this outing. However the Scarlet Robin put on a splendid display there and was a real highlight. It was surprising that even water birds were very scarce on the Moora Moora Reservoir.

Hennie and Bill Neve hosted us for our lunch break at their … Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report, Natural Values

Photo Point Mapping of Sallow Wattle

Last year  FOGGs volunteered to keep a pictorial record of Sallow Wattle at 20-30 spots in the Park. We would mark each spot with a star picket and it would be a matter of going back to the same spot twice a year and taking a photo at a time that suits the individual volunteer. It has been a slow start but we now have the map with the spots to be monitored and enough volunteers to spread the load.  The actual photo work is about to start on this long term project.… Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report, Natural Values

Update On The Orchid Conservation Program

Our contractors have erected a locked fence to keep grazing animals away from the highly endangered orchid  Caladenia audasii —(or McIvor Spider-orchid, Audas Spider-orchid) in the Stawell Ironbarks Forest, and there is a remote camera to deter any human predators. The team will keep a close eye on it and when (if?) it flowers it will be crosspollinated from the other surviving colony near Bendigo and eventually more plants can be grown at Cranbourne then released back into the wild.… Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report, Natural Values

Walks For The Less Abled

A new booklet is under way with support from PV, FOGGS and the Wimmera Sports Assembly. Long term members may remember that we were deeply involved in the first book back in 1999.… Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report

Stawell Field Naturalists History

We were recently approached as to whether we were interested in supporting a project whereby RMIT students in the final year of their Bachelor of Environment Programs  would conduct interviews and document the  history of this group. We were delighted to co-operate as it was largely through the efforts of the Field Nats that our Park was established, and the knowledge collected by the group over the years has been enormous. Ian McCann  and Thelma Argall were founding members. The project has been listed for the students to choose from, and at least one is interested and will be interviewed next week.… Read the rest

Posted in 2016 Winter Newsletter, Activity Report