Cactus gets the cut

Wednesday 2 October, 2019
Cactus was in the firing line at a recent working bee at Wunghnu Common

Goulburn Broken CMA’s Janice Mentiplay-Smith said the working bee had been initiated by Parks Victoria and the Tallygaroopna Congupna Landcare Group in an effort to tackle cactus, which is having a resurgence in the area.

“The Wunghnu Common is part of the Broken Boosey State Park, a lovely peaceful grey box woodland that is an important reserve for local flora and fauna,” Ms Mentiplay-Smith said.

“Unfortunately, cactus spreads very easily, and rapidly out-competes native vegetation, even the smallest piece of cactus can quickly take root and establish in the driest of soil. Cactus has no food value, provides no nesting opportunities and will crowd out the native species of plants that do.  Its spikes are extremely dangerous, and it’s not uncommon for birds and animals to become entangled or impaled upon the spikes, leaving them unable to escape.”  

The working bee was attended by Landcare and Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network (CMN) members and supported by Parks Vic staff.

“It’s amazing what can be achieved in a couple of hours work by a small group of willing and hard-working volunteers,” Ms Mentiplay-Smith said. 

“Having Landcare, Broken Boosey CMN and Parks Vic join forces to work in this beautiful grey box woodland is a great demonstration of how community and agencies can make a big difference.  Many thanks to Scott Cunningham from Parks Victoria for organising the equipment and taking care of the cactus disposal and for providing lunch, and to the group of locals who were willing to spend their Saturday morning hard at work on something that benefits the local community and environment.

“Although the morning’s work made a notable difference at the Wunghnu Common, there is still a way to go, so another working bee will be organised in the near future so this great work can continue.”