MBBA Newsletter No 1. Caring for the Coast: from Castaways to Peregian 2021- 2022

It’s time to celebrate achievements. The people working under the Marcus Beach Bushcare Association umbrella are talented self-starters who work from Castaways Creek (BA 42) in the North to BA 51 at Peregian in the south. We don’t often come together as a group, so this Newsletter is a way for Bushcarers, volunteers, MBBA members and others to find out about the projects underway and the people involved.

Castaway Creek ‘makeover’

Sarah Lawson coordinates the Castaways Creek regeneration work that MBBA is undertaking as part of a three Year Environmental Grant from Noosa Council Beach. Sarah and her group had already been doing a marathon effort to rehabilitate the natural vegetation around BA 42 access point. There were masses of weeds on the site. Chris Shannon worked hard in the initial stages clearing the really heavy weed load. This enabled Sarah to replant and recruit natives through consistent maintenance.

The grant money meant that Sarah could extend her work using Landcare crews to do important work on the riparian zones of the creek while improving the visual amenity of the walking path.

Sarah and her team did a mass planting of Lomandra along the pathway. It is an ideal solution for this particular site as it delineates the mowing strip on the pathway from the native vegetation, providing an attractive green barrier against the weeds that typically spread into the bush from the edges of pathways.

If you would like to be involved at Castaways contact info@mbba.org

Not making hay but…

We are planting seedlings while the rain falls. Yes MBBA members capitalised on the the El Nino forecast of a wet summer by planting 325 seedlings along the dunes in weeded areas at Beach Accesses 45, 47, 48 and 51. They spared a few for the David Low Way, Hawthorn Park, the Environmental Reserve North of Peregian Creek and the Cherrywood Close walkway. Needless-to-say the little trees are thriving, making volunteers doubly happy because we don’t have to hand water them. Thank-you to the Landcare commercial nursery for donating 105 Allocausarina equisetifolia (Ponytail She Oak) and to Craig Holmes for his work around Cherrywood Close Reserve Glossy black area.

Congratulations Chris

MBBA member Chris Shannon with the Silver Shovel Award for outstanding contribution to Bushcare at the 2021 annual Bushcare Christmas celebration.

Take a walk or ride along the path near Beach access 43 and see how beautiful the coastal bush looks there, thanks to Chris Shannon. He is a human dynamo who has restored a massive area to its natural state against all odds. Chris has developed some useful weeding techniques too. More on this to follow.

Chris’s tireless work on “garden escapees” and other habitat-destroying weeds reminds us of how important it is to educate homeowners about the appropriate disposal of garden waste and how to recognise and eliminate weeds in their gardens that can spread into adjacent bushland.

Coastal Connect Progress Report

We are two-thirds of the way through the Coastal Connect three-year environmental grant that has enabled the Sunshine, Marcus and Peregian Beach Coastal Bushcare to do some much-needed follow-up work on riparian zones adjoining Coastal creeks and on other sites.
The Funding from the Noosa Council enabled MBBA, to deploy Landcare crews to work at Castaways, Marcus and Peregian Creeks. The results of this and additional volunteer working bees are:

Marcus Beach: Weed containment and regeneration of the riparian area at Marcus Creek (BA45); Removal of pepper trees and asparagus fern planting of canopy species along the fore dune edge for increased protection of hind dunes. (BA 45 &48)

Castaways creek: Creating a balance between visual amenity along public pathways and protecting/regenerating ecologically important riparian areas

Peregian Creek: Community engagement “weedathons” along the bike path north of the creek.

We couldn’t have done it without you

The Coolum Coast Care and MBBA weeders

A big thank you to Coolum Coastcare volunteers who did two working bees along the bike path to the north of Peregian Creek in November and December 2021. The area contains a beautiful stand of Moreton Bay Ash, a vegetation type that is becoming less common on the hind dunes. Council put a great deal of effort into regenerating this section at considerable cost, some years ago.

MBBA has been watching the weeds progressively creeping back, but we don’t have the capacity to take it on as a project right now. Being able to make a start on the maintenance really lifted our spirits, and made a big difference to the area. In November Energex volunteers also helped by planted 100 Midyim seedlings which will help keep the weeds down by supplementing the existing midyim on site.

Gardening Club stepping out

MBBA bushcarer Kevin Joseph organised a garden outing with the difference for members of the Steps Community Support Gardening Group. Steps provides recreational activities for people with disabilities. After a short walk and talk by Jude Tulloch along the interpretive footpath at Beach Access 47, participants assisted with planting some Allocausarina equisetifolia and had morning tea with MBBA bushcarers.
Thanks also to Colin Ingram for his help on the day and the Bushcarers who extended the work by removing the Crowsfoot Grass infestation along the steps at BA 47 a recently emerging weed, and planting fifty Dianella congesta to bind the sand on an erosion prone edge.

Glossy giveaways

Thank you to all the MBBA Bushcarers and Marcus Beach residents who planted Allocausarina littoralis (Black She-oak) seedlings in their gardens or on reserves. As a result there are another sixty trees planted in the area. Jude Tulloch set up a Free Tree Stand in Mahogany Drive to let residents know that the A.Littoralis trees at Marcus Beach provide food for the Glossy Black Cockatoo. Marcus is also a water stop for the birds. The donated trees may eventually replace the feed trees that have been lost in the area – hopefully ensuring the presence of this lovely visitor to our neighbourhood in years to come.

Paul Ryan and the Pepper Poppers

When Paul Ryan teamed up with Wesley Manson the local Broad-Leaf Pepper Guru, a whole new phase of weed management started. Unbeknownst to many casual observers of our coastal reserves, there are thickets of Broad-Leaf Pepper Trees that have overtaken native trees and destroyed the understory. It’s a major invasive weed in the area.

Wes and Paul have been eliminating mature Peppers around BA51, on the Peregian sites and in people’s backyards. Their enthusiasm is infectious so now  Laura Ellis and Chris Hansen have joined Wes at BA51 where they have cleared away the weeds, including Peppers, as well as planting tubestock.

Watch this space for more on the Pepper Popper

Thanks to all those who make a contribution to the work that MBBA does.

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