The Swans at Aireys Inlet Allen Noble Sanctuary have successfully raised their seven young ones.
The cygnets are quite large now, but still grey and downy. Also at the Sanctuary, a pair of Eurasian Coots has two chicks.
The Hooded Plovers at Moggs Creek have three eggs. We watched as the male took his turn sitting at the nest, while the female took a break and flew a little way along the beach. The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) will erect a fence to help protect the nesting site.
Hover-flies, Syrphidae, sometimes called flower flies, are active and in large numbers right now. They are usually drawn to gardens where they feed on, and pollinate, flowers during the warmer months. They are attracted to particular flowers. Right now I have dozens of them hovering around a teatree which is currently in flower. They can be mistaken for bees and wasps because of their black and yellow striped abdomens. They have evolved as wasp and bee mimics. They will lay their eggs in decaying vegetable matter, in liquid animal remains and ants nests. They are beneficial to gardeners as the larvae will feed on pest insects such as aphids.
Since June 2016, a team of staff from Parks Victoria and the Conservation Ecology Centre have placed out 300 monitoring cameras across the landscape from Point Addis through to Lavers Hill as part of the Otway Ark, a threatened species recovery program designed to aid in the recovery of rare and threatened native fauna across the entire Otway landscape. A large number of camera images are still being processed and the following are some of the species recorded so far:
Native species: Long-nosed Potoroo, Long-nosed Bandicoot, Southern Brown Bandicoot, Antechinus, Bush Rat, Koala, Brushtail Possum, Echidna, Swamp Wallaby, Eastern Grey Kangaroo, Bassian Thrush, Satin Bowerbird, Olive Whistler, Rufous Bristlebird.
Red Necked Wallaby
Introduced species: Red Fox, Feral Cat, Fallow Deer, Red Deer, Rabbits, and one record of a Feral Pig in the Otway Forest Park near Turtons Track.
The Otway Ark will also undertake camera monitoring across 80 sites in the area between Forrest, Gellibrand and Carlisle in late summer as part of an annual comprehensive monitoring program sensitive to changes in local native fauna and invasive predators. The monitoring program will also provide Otway land managers with an inventory of the region’s fauna providing an opportunity to track how land management practices are influencing our native species. (Thanks to Cathy Longmore (Parks Victoria) for this summary).
An Australian Fur Seal was spotted November 8 at on the rocks at Point Roadknight. Thanks to Geoff Gates for the beautiful photos.
Australia Fur Seal
Bluebell Creeper Billardia fusiformis
Originally from Western Australia it was a popular garden plant because it grows vigorously without careful attention. Unfortunately it is those characteristics that make the Bluebell Creeper one of the most devastating environmental weeds. Twining around other plants it quickly forms large colonies smothering any nearby plant. Small plants can be pulled out. Larger plants need to be either sprayed or cut down to ground level and then poisoned..
More details about how to control this weed can be found in the archive of Weeds of the Month.
There are a number of wonderful local Friends Groups that provide ANGAIR members and the community with opportunities for involvement.