Invitation: Help shape the future of water in Whittlesea

The City of Whittlesea is currently putting together a Community Panel for the Future of Water in Whittlesea. The Community Panel will bring together 15-20 community members with a range of backgrounds and interests, who are interested in helping to shape the future of water use in Whittlesea.  As food production and land management are an essential part of our future, it would be great to have representatives with knowledge and experience in the use of water in agriculture and land management to join the panel.

Whittlesea Community Panel Dates and Times:

  • Workshop 1: Wednesday 24 July, 6-9pm
  • Workshop 2: Wednesday 18 September, 6-9pm
  • Workshop 3: Wednesday 6 November, 6-9pm
  • Workshop 4: Wednesday 5 February, 6-9pm

Location: 25 Ferres Boulevard, City of Whittlesea Civic Centre, South Morang (Fountain View Room)
A light dinner will be served at 5:30pm for each of the workshops.

Community panellists will be provided all of the information they need to make an informed decision during the workshops.  Findings from the Community Panel will help shape the future strategy and action plan for water in Whittlesea.

If you are interested in joining the Whittlesea Community Panel for Water, please contact Stephanie Kuisma on 03 9217 2001 or email Stephanie.kuisma@whittlesea.vic.gov.au by Friday 19 July.

Have Your say

Integrated water management is an approach that uses our water resources more creatively and efficiently to become a water sensitive, liveable and future-proofed city.

Complete our water and community priorities survey and help us create our sustainable water future.

Results from the survey will guide the design of our neighbourhoods, inform our planning decisions and improve our water management assets and practices.

Participants can enter a draw to win one of five $100 Coles vouchers. View the terms and conditions.

Complete the survey

The survey closes at 12pm on Sunday 18 August 2019.

For more information, phone 9217 2212 or email fleur.anderson@whittlesea.vic.gov.au.

Landowners are putting the spotlight on rabbits

We’re excited to be receiving rabbit monitoring data from landowners who have signed up for the Whittlesea Pest Animal Management (PAM) Program. At the fox and rabbit control workshop back in March, landowners were given spreadsheets and instructions on how to undertake a spotlight count. This data will help direct control works and measure success of the 2019/20 summer rabbit control program. Contactors will be liaising with landholders directly between July and September to map and mark warrens across each of the properties.

Thanks to this landholder in Whittlesea who provided an accurate and detailed spotlight monitoring record sheet and perfect property map, which can be used to revisit the exercise after the control program is complete.

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For more information on standard best practice in rabbit control, click on the below image and watch this brief video put together by experts from the Victorian Rabbit Action Network (VRAN):

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For more information about PAM, contact Katherine.whittaker@whittlesea.vic.gov.au or jane.juliff@whittlesea.vic.gov.au

The Whittlesea PAM project has been funded by the Victorian Government’s Biodiversity Response Planning program and is helping to ensure that Victoria’s natural environment is healthy, valued and actively cared for.

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Biodiversity Strategy gets the green light

The City of Whittlesea officially has a Biodiversity Strategy after Council endorsed the Strategy at its June 4 meeting.

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The Strategy provides six key directions to improve the management and protection of biodiversity across the municipality into the future. It builds on the many efforts already underway by individuals, community groups, and government and aims to develop a coordinated approach that will allow for our natural environment to thrive as the City continues to grow.

The Strategy sets out six key objectives to protect and improve local biodiversity: 

  1. Improve our knowledge and understanding of local biodiversity
  2. Strengthen the Planning Scheme to achieve better biodiversity outcomes
  3. Support our rural landowners to protect biodiversity of their land
  4. Encourage awareness and participation in urban biodiversity and improvement
  5. Manage Council land to reduce threats and improve habitat quality
  6. Collaborate with other land management agencies

 

If you would like any further information feel free to contact Mark Williams on 9217 2471 or mark.williams@whittlesea.vic.gov.au

Junior Landcare Grants: Now Open

Junior Landcare Grants – for schools, kinders, youth groups and more

The Victorian Department of Environment, Land Water & Planning (DELWP), in partnership with Landcare Australia, is giving schools, kindergartens, childcare centres, Scouts, Girl Guides and youth groups the opportunity to apply for a grant of up to $5,000 through the 2019 Victorian Junior Landcare and Biodiversity Grants. These grants offer funding for projects that seek to involve and educate young Victorians in valuing and actively caring for our natural environment.

Applications close: 3pm on Friday 21 June 2019
Type of projects supported by this program include:

·         On-ground projects that restore, protect, enhance, or develop habitat for native flora and fauna, and/or address threats to biodiversity e.g. weed invasion, habitat loss etc., and/or

·         Projects that increase opportunities for children to connect with their natural environment e.g. a school excursion to Healesville Sanctuary; and/or

·         Projects that educate and raise awareness, among young people, of the benefits and importance of biodiversity and a healthy environment, and/or how they can contribute to environmental improvement.

Click here for more information or contact Whittlesea’s Landcare Facilitator, Jane Juliff on  0417 127 841 or Landcare@whittlesea.vic.gov.au to discuss your project idea.

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Seasonal Weed Control – Autumn/Winter

The Land Management & Biodiversity team have been lucky enough to have Ben on loan from Councils Conservation Management Team over the Summer. Ben’s a keen botaniser and invasive plant enthusiast with years of on-ground experience in best practice weed management. Here’s some advice from Ben to help you get started planning your weed control over the coming cooler months..

Now that autumn is finally here after an extended summer, it is time to start thinking about weeds that will begin to show themselves with the changing conditions. We’ve finally had some rain, so a number of weed species will begin germinating and it will be time for weed control before you know it. Weeds that will begin to germinate with the autumn rains include Paterson’s Curse, Capeweed, Spear Thistle, Scotch thistle and Artichoke Thistle which are all listed, amongst others, under the Councils Pest Plant Local Law.

Depending on rainfall, seedlings and rosettes will be visible very soon, if not already. Early control as well as follow up treatment will be critical to stop seed set. Weeds such as Paterson’s Curse can begin to flower sporadically which means that seed set could occur sooner than you think.

Larger woody weeds will begin to become dormant as it gets colder so efforts on weed control are best focused on broadleaf weeds germinating over autumn and winter.

Plan your attack, look at what methods you want use and when. Talk to your neighbours. If they have the same weed issues, work together towards controlling weeds over the fence as well. Remember to treat any new weeds that appear on your property. Isolated plants can quickly become large infestations if not controlled. If you already have been controlling weeds on your property, keep up good work”.

If you need any further information on weed identification and seasonal control options, call 9217-2147.

 

City of Whittlesea Draft Biodiversity Strategy

The City of Whittlesea is pleased to present its Draft Biodiversity Strategy 2019-2029.

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The Strategy will provide directions to improve the management and protection of biodiversity across our municipality through:

  • Improving our knowledge and understanding of local biodiversity
  • Strengthening the Planning Scheme to achieve better biodiversity outcomes
  • Supporting rural landowners to protect and improve biodiversity on private land
  • Encouraging awareness and participation in urban biodiversity and improvement
  • Managing Council land to reduce threats and improve habitat quality
  • Collaborating with other land management agencies

Members of the public are invited to make comment and learn more about the Strategy. Please contact Mark Williams for further information on 9217 2471 or email mark.williams@whittlesea.vic.gov.au by 26 April 2019