Preston River to Ocean Project

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PROJECT OVERVIEW

The Preston River to Ocean Project was a four-year partnership between SWCC and the City of Bunbury that came to a close in June this year.  The project aimed to protect the Preston River to Ocean Regional Park’s ecological, social and cultural values, which are under threat from a range of impacts associated with its close proximity to a growing urban population.

In 2016-17, the project was in its final year of implementation and has now closed of June 30, 2017.  This year, 15.1 ha weed treatment (74.8 ha follow-up weed treatment) has been undertaken to protect key sites from invasive weeds. The important and fragile coastline of the Maidens Reserve has undergone restoration with the installation of brushing and 5,879 native coastal species at four sites to combat erosion and increase habitat.  A further three revegetation sites were planted with 7,099 native seedlings to increase connectivity and habitat values of the park.

Fencing and access control gates have also been installed to protect the park from the impacts of illegal 4WD access, reduce rubbish dumping and the spread of weeds and Dieback.

Phosphite treatment in Dieback-susceptible areas of Manea Park has been undertaken in partnership with the Friends of Manea Park across 10 ha.  Dieback interpretive signage has been installed and a dieback treatment plan has been produced to improve dieback management.

Nine community events involving 336 people have been delivered including several planting days with three local Bunbury school groups and the general community to engage people in the environment and increase habitat and biodiversity of the park area.

“While the project has come to an end, it’s important to reflect on the collective achievements which have raised the park’s profile and reduced the impacts of its threats.   SWCC, City of Bunbury and other partners consider the proposed park to be a valuable asset for the South West and welcome its formalisation

Pip Marshall, SWCC Project Manager

FUTURE DIRECTIONS

This four year project, funded by the National Landcare Program and the City of Bunbury, ended in June 2017 and reserve management has now returned to the respective landholders.

The overall project achievements from July 2013-June 2017 are as follows:

  • Four new areas identified as part of the Swan Coastal Plain Claypan Threatened Ecological Community;
  • 9.6 km of fencing installed/repaired and 11 gates installed to control illegal vehicle access;
  • 2.9 ha of revegetation (across 8 sites) planted with over 33,000 native seedlings;
  • 0.6 ha of erosion control for the protection of dune blowout sites in the Maidens Reserve;
  • 75.4 ha of weed treatment areas (and 159 ha of follow-up weed treatment);
  • 47.5 ha treated for Phytophthora dieback;
  • Four technical reports on Dieback management produced;
  • Two dieback boot-cleaning stations installed;
  • One Pest Management Plan produced;
  • 256 ha of pest control (fox and rabbit);
  • 28 interpretive signs installed;
  • 55 community engagement events attended by 1,748 people, of which:
    • 1,046 were new to natural resource management; and
    • 57 of Aboriginal Australian heritage;
  • 13 Aboriginal Australians were employed by the project to work on Country;
  • Rubbish collection across 8.4 ha of bushland.

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FUN FACT

The Preston River to Ocean proposed regional park is home to threatened species including the Swan Coastal Plain (SCP) Claypan Threatened Ecological Community (TEC), Banksia Woodland of the SCP TEC, the Western Ringtail Possum and the Forest Red-tail, Carnaby’s and Baudin’s black cockatoos.

COMMITMENT
8 community events

ACHIEVEMENT
9 community events

COMMITMENT
38 people engaged

ACHIEVEMENT
336 people engaged

Project Manager

Pip Marshall

Key Partners

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