What do Landcarers get up to?
Landcare is an umbrella term that includes Coastcare, Bushcare, Wildcare, Catchment and Friends of groups. The types of Landcare activities are decided by the group and undertaken at working bees. Tree planting and weeding are the main two activities though others include track maintenance, feral oyster smashing, water quality monitoring, fencing, dune stabilising and rehabilitation and seed collecting. It’s important and satisfying work!
Don't take our word for it!
Leanne Sherriff is a passionate Landcare volunteer and she sheds some light on the benefits of getting involved.
How did you get involved in Landcare?
I moved to Sandford and wanted to meet some people who lived in the area and also expand my knowledge of landcare/environmental practices.
What do you get out of it?
The satisfaction of seeing our local patch of bush improve in condition and knowing that if we weren’t hard at work it would probably be a sea of Spanish heath and pine trees by now. I really enjoy catching up with the other members of the group and love just spending time in the reserve, whether it’s for a working bee or recreation.
What would you say to someone thinking about getting involved?
Go for it! It’s not a massive commitment, and most groups are happy to have people involved even if they can’t come to every working bee. You will meet interesting people from your local area, that you wouldn’t have met any other way, and you will learn new skills and more about the plants and animals that live in your local area, giving you an even better appreciation of your local patch.
What is special about the Landcare movement ?
It is special because it’s real. It’s about ordinary people digging in and doing something because it is important to them and their local community.
Having a good time is mandatory! Working bees are also about sharing company, enjoying a cup of tea and a chocolate biscuit after your hard work - or a local lager if your tastes prefer! Many activities are family friendly, do not require specialist knowledge, equipment or peak physical fitness – just the right attitude and interest. Always best to speak directly with the working bee organiser to find a Landcare activity that suits you.
Planting native trees and understorey species increases habitat and can restore the natural environment. Re-vegetation also creates wildlife corridors, stabilises erosion, improves air and water quality and provides shelter belts for stock.
Our groups are generally knowledgeable about local native species and can provide expert planting advice. It’s extremely rewarding to re-visit a site in later years to see how your plants have grown. A feather in your cap!
Weeders are unsung heroes! There are many mischievous and highly invasive weeds in Tasmania. If left unchecked these weeds would out-compete native species, threatening the diversity in our natural environment and creating a menace for various industries including agriculture, viticulture and forestry. Eradicating weeds from an area or stopping their spread is generally slow and hard work - but the sense of achievement is enormous. Sometimes weedlings can be hand pulled using a pair of gloves. More established woody weeds are ‘cut and painted’ (demonstrations and safety gear would be provided by the group leader).
Spanish heath removal, AGM & BBQ
This working bee will last a couple of hours before all volunteers will be invited to stay for a free BBQ.
Over lunch, we will review the work of the last year and plan for the next!