Moore than meets the eye

Wetland lovers travelled to Guilderton last week for NACC’s belated World Wetlands Day educational event.

In true NACC style, attendees were treated to a variety of sights, sounds and spectacles, and were left wanting “Moore”.

After departing Guilderton, the lively bunch took the time to learn about Banksia Woodlands – a threatened ecological community that occurs along the Moore River. At the morning tea break, Ryan Tangey from Botanic Gardens and Parks Authority, shared his research into the Banksia Woodlands including the fire ecology needed to assist with germination, and the diversity of flora.

The bus tour wound its way through the Moore River National Park – which covers 17, 588 hectares – before stopping at the Gingin Brook (a tributary of Moore River), in Gingin.

Here the focus turned to wildlife – with people getting up-close and personal with some of the Banksia Woodlands’ fantastic creatures thanks to Dean and Meg from Native Arc – a wildlife rescue and rehabilitation group with a focus on community engagement and education.  Facts were soon pouring-out like a waterfall with Native Arc covering everything from Western Grey Kangaroos, to Rakali (water rats), to Shingleback Lizards.

One of the amazing “Did You Know” facts shared with the participants is that Banksia Woodlands support more than 20 nationally threatened species, including the Carnaby’s Black-cockatoo, the Chuditch and a suite of native bees.

Hamish gets up close and personal with a local. Picture: Vanessa McGuiness

After a few sneaky selfies with the wildlife, everyone got back on the bus and headed-off to the Guilderton Country Club for a buffet lunch.

After lunch, it was time to get on the water, and learn more about the estuary monitoring work that NACC has been involved in. Once the group was safely on board the vessel, NACC Coastal & Marine Project Manager Hamish Longbottom gave a snapshot of the NACC Healthy Estuaries project, and how people can get involved in citizen science. Phill Cook from Moore River Tours entertained everyone with information about local history, conservation activities, and stories about Moore River. Along the way, the group was lucky enough to also catch a glimpse of some of the estuaries’ magnificent birdlife.

“All-in-all it was a perfect end to a satisfying day of fun, learning and connecting with the natural environment, said Hamish.

NACC  Biodiversity Program Coordinator Jessica Stingemore said organising on-country events like the World Wetlands Day tour was a great way to engage with and inform the community about work being done in their local area.

All aboard! Picture: Jessica Stingemore
All aboard! Picture: Jessica Stingemore

“By directly engaging with our local community we can empower them to become environmental stewards and support their interests in NRM,” she said.

“It was wonderful to have members of the local Friends of Moore River and TrackCare WA join the event.

“Their local knowledge gave a unique angle to the day, and we all left having learnt something new about the region.”

To see more events coming up in our region go to NACC’s events page https://www.nacc.com.au/events/

This event was supported by NACC, through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

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