Environmental volunteers working to restore the Jan Juc Creek reserve are witnessing the return of various native species to the area and calling on everyone to aid in their protection.
Leader of the Friends of Jan Juc Creek Reserves (FJJCR) Octavier Chabrier said an array of native animals had been sighted.
“We have spotted many animals we haven’t seen in years including Echidnas, Kangaroos, Lizards, Possums, Pardalotes, Snakes and many more,” said
Sugar Gliders are also returning, although the recent discovery of an injured glider came as a timely reminder for residents to keep their cats indoors.
“Unfortunately, the animal, which was carrying young, had been injured and is suspected to have been attacked by a cat.
“The glider and its baby were looked after by a vet and local wildlife carers but unfortunately neither could be saved.
“Ensure you take steps to be a responsible cat owner and adhere to the cat curfew,” said Ms Chabrier.
Robyn Rule from the Torquay Wildlife Shelter said cat saliva was deadly to gliders and possums and that it was important they received antibiotics straight away.
“The faster they get into care the better, so call Wildilfe Victoria on 1300 094 535 or, after hours, call the Torquay Wildlife Shelter on 0402 237 600,” she said.
FJJCR consists of 50 members who work to eradicate weeds and restore and revegetate the areas of reserve along the Jan Juc creek and has planted over 1000 plants and grasses over the five years.
“It’s such a thrill to watch the dynamic change that comes from the growth of these plantations,” Ms Chabrier said.
Ms Chabrier said the group also worked to educate others about invasive weeds .
“Many don’t realise plants in their back yard could spread to the reserves and invade indigenous plant species.”
“The Mirrorbush, a fast-growing hedge that can run rampant through the reserves, is one weed in particular that many people are unaware of,” she said.
The Surf Coast Shire publishes a free Environmental Weeds-Invaders of our Surf Coast booklet which is available on their website to assist residents to identify what weeds could be lurking in their garden.
“Inspect your garden for weeds and consider if they could be removed and replaced by indigenous plants,” Ms Chabrier said.
FJJCR is always seeking new members and doesn’t have a minimum time commitment, welcoming even those who can only volunteer once a year. For more information on FJJCR contact Octavier Chabrier 0439510269.
This story featured in the Surf Coast Times Green the Coast Column.
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