Wheat

Feral feast serves as a success!

Wednesday 27 June, 2012
Over eighty people attended a feast of feral proportions on Sunday 24th June when the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network and the Lower Goulburn Conservation Management Network (CMN) held their annual Biodiversity Day.

Over eighty people attended a feast of feral proportions on Sunday 24th June when the Broken Boosey Conservation Management Network and the Lower Goulburn Conservation Management Network (CMN) held their annual Biodiversity Day.

The theme for this year was a 'Feral Feast', highlighting the beginnings of feral plant and animal occupation of Australia, and the current 'state of play' with regards to managing the social and ecological problems feral species present us with.

One of the highlights from the day included guest speaker, Steve Wilson, Land and Biodiversity Manager from the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority (CMA). Steve provided a fascinating talk about the way Australia was 'acclimatised' with species of plants and animals, even up to the 1960's. As a result, some of our most invasive species such as the carp, rabbit, fox pig and camel now call Australia home. Thankfully, some species didn't quite establish here, such as the hippopotamus, which was once thought to be very suitable for the Yarra River!

Conservation Management Network Coordinator, Janice Mentiplay-Smith was delighted with the turn-up. "Eighty people attended the 'Feral Feast' at Nathalia, 33 of these attendees had not previously attended a CMN event, which is a great result as the intention of these days is to introduce more members of the community to events based around environmental and ecological issues."

The event was open to all members of the public and was well patronized by the Broken Creek Field Naturalists, as well as by members of the Whroo Goldfields and Lower Goulburn CMN's and of course the success of these days is due to the hard work and preparation of dedicated volunteers and the CMN Coordinators, Janice Mentiplay-Smith and Lainie Pearce.

Funding support for the event was gained from a $1200 grant through the Goulburn Broken CMA's Small Community Action and Education Grants. The day featured 'feral themed' lucky door prizes such as mouse traps and chocolate frogs (to represent cane toads). To continue the 'Feral' theme, the main meal featured a specially prepared menu of 'feral' dishes such as Stinging Nettle Soup, Wild Boar Sausage, Venison Sausage, Goat Curry, Braised Rabbit, Snails, Prickly Pear Salsa, Fennel Salad and Blackberry Pie.

In keeping with the theme, the room featured displays of feral animals such as a cat and fox (kindly provided by Parks Victoria), buffalo horns, fox and dingo skins as well as Goulburn Broken CMA weed booklets, the Goulburn Broken CMA Fishes Booklets (featuring 'alien species'), information from the Department of Primary Industries and the Australian Government focusing on pest plants and animals.

For more information on the Conservation Management Networks please contact Janice Mentiplay-Smith on 03 5761 1644.