clm connections

Connecting 'Community' and 'Conservation'

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Rewilding Scotland

In Australia most conservationists have a dim view of cats.

However in Scotland the Scottish wildcat its part of their natural legacy and folklore.

Pound for pound the Scottish wildcat is one of the most impressive predators in the world, however they are critically endangered and the focus of significant conservation effort. There is also much discussion on how the wildcat will co-exist with the lynx.


Tonight @  9:35 on ABC Foreign Correspondent has a program on Rewilding Scotland. They are planning to reintroduce the Lynx 1300 years after it was hunted to extinction. Should be interesting viewing

Rewilding Scotland


Further reading.


Contributor Tony Misson, who had the opportunity in 2015 to complete some impressive  walks through the wilds of UK.




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Detox Your Home @ Bendigo Eco Centre this Sat 10th Oct


For those of you planning a clean-up this weekend, consider sorting your old chemicals and getting ready for the upcoming Detox Your Home collection on Saturday 10 October in Bendigo. Or wait a few weeks until future sessions to be held on Saturday 31st October in Mildura, and the 14th of November in Shepparton.

The Detox Your Home program is run by Sustainability Victoria to provide residents with an opportunity to safely dispose of unwanted chemicals that are stored around their homes. It’s good for both your family’s health and the environment to dispose of old and unwanted chemicals in a responsible and safe manner.


The following items are accepted at a Detox Your Home collection:

  • acids & alkalis,
  • aerosol cans,
  • anti-freeze, brake fluid, car body filler, car wax,
  • ammonia based cleaners,
  • cooking oil,
  • coolant,
  • detergents, disinfectants & drain cleaners,
  • fertiliser,
  • fire extinguishers,
  • floor-care products & waxes,
  • fuels – petrol, diesel, kerosene and others,
  • glues – water-based & solvents,
  • herbicides & weed killers, insect spray/pesticides,
  • nail polish & remover,
  • oven cleaner,
  • paint stripper, thinner & turps,
  • pool chemicals,
  • rat poison,
  • solvents,
  • transmission fluid,
  • wood preservatives and finishes (oils & varnish).

The Bendigo Detox Your Home collection is on this Saturday 10th October from 10 am to 2 pm at the Bendigo Eco Centre, 189 Upper California Gully Road in Eaglehawk (Bendigo Eco Centre Map ). Registration (booking) is not required and it’s a free service.

Less toxic items like paint, batteries, fluorescent globes & tubes and gas bottles can be disposed of all year round at the permanent drop-off sites at the Eaglehawk Eco Centre (Bendigo), Mildura, Swan Hill, Echuca or Shepparton Transfer Stations.

 For more information telephone 1300 363 744 or contact the Bendigo Eco Centre direct at (03) 5446 3917.

Posted by Michael Luke. To keep up to date with information about conservation issues, please subscribe to the blog at

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Community Events and Volunteering

DATE:                   Wednesday 9th September 2015. 9.30am – 12noon

VENUE:                Activity Room One, Bendigo Library, Hargreaves Street entrance,

Bendigo Central

COST:                   Free of charge

Community Events happen every weekend in our community .and require a great deal of ‘behind the scenes’ work including pre-planning, organisation and promotion. This workshop will provide you with a guide and templates to assist with developing your pre-planning processes including an event action plan, a guide to engaging volunteers, tips on promoting your event and the importance of managing risk to ensure a successful community event.

Bendigo Volunteer Resource Centre, Bendigo Library, Hargreaves Street entrance, Bendigo Central


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Cat Curfews? What are they and why?

Meow Meow!


A multitude of pusses

Or should we say ‘Bad Kitty’?  In recent times there has been a push to legislate various forms of ‘Cat Curfews’, which are efforts to restrict the outdoor access to domestic cats in an effort to reduce the amount of native species these cats hunt and kill.  Some curfews are after dark (or after a certain time such as 6pm), others are 24 hours (all day).

It’s estimated feral cats eat 75 million native animals a night—more than 20 billion mammals, reptiles, birds and even insects every year.


Fat-Tailed Dunnart

Macedon zoologist Chris Humfrey says a 24-hour cat curfew is needed to ensure the future of our wildlife and ecosystem.

Humfrey, of Wild Action Zoo, is calling on Macedon Ranges Council to take the lead of councils such as Mornington Peninsula and Yarra Ranges and introduce a full-time curfew to protect what people love most about the shire.

“We live in one of the most biodiverse municipalities in Victoria, and we’ve got our heads in the sand. We don’t understand what we’re destroying,” he said.

“Cats are absolutely magnificent animals but they don’t belong in the Macedon Ranges bushland and forests.”

Macedon Ranges Council reviewed the need to introduce a cat curfew last year as part of its Domestic Animal Management Plan 2012-16. Under a curfew, owners would need to confine their cat indoors or in a cat enclosure.

The Pets in Public Places Survey showed 50 per cent of respondents supported a night-time cat curfew and 30 per cent supported a 24-hour cat curfew, said council’s community safety manager, Anne-Louise Lindner.


“The main concerns highlighted by respondents related to cats attacking wildlife and cat fights, particularly in forest and conservation areas,” Ms Lindner said.

Council decided against introducing a cat curfew at the time and instead chose to encourage use of its cat trapping program.

This post was adapted from the original story titled ‘Curfew Time’, printed in the Midland Express Newspaper on the 10th August 2015 and also available online:

For a background briefing on the damage feral cats are doing in Australia, an excellent article from the ABC:

For further information on Cat Curfews, visit the website of your local Council or visit for an example of how these curfews operate.

The RSPCA also has a web page outlining the various Cat Curfew related laws in Australia, this can be accessed here:

Posted by Michael Luke

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North Central Catchment Management Authority seeking feedback

Would you like to have your say on climate change, the natural environment and sustainable agriculture across north central Victoria?

If so, you may be interested in attending one of five regional forums that will discuss the draft North Central Region Climate Change Adaptation and Mitigation Plan and the draft North Central Regional Sustainable Agriculture Strategy.

These forums will be held across the north central Victoria region during August and early September (refer to attached flyer including how to RSVP).

Pyramid Hill Tuesday 11 August 7.00pm Memorial Hall, Kelly St
Trentham Monday 17 August 7.00pm Mechanics Institute, High Street
St Arnaud Monday 24 August 7.00pm Community Resource Centre, 85 Napier Street
Castlemaine Monday 31 August 7.00pm Campbells Creek Community Centre, Elizabeth St
Charlton Tuesday 1 September 7.00pm Charlton Town Hall

**Please note a sixth forum with be held in Bendigo on the 25 August in conjunction with the City of Greater Bendigo who are also seeking  input into their draft Rural Communities discussion paper.

We encourage you to come along and provide feedback on these important issues.  More information can be found on the North Central CMA’s website (Ctrl + click to follow the links)

Rohan Hogan and Tim Shanahan (on behalf of the North Central CMA)

NCCMA Climate Change Mitigation and SAS Invitation 2015 FINAL 30-7-15_pagenumber.001 compressed

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Friends of Box Ironbark Forests: Bushwalks 2015

Friends of Box Ironbark Forests: Bushwalks 2015
Third Sunday of the Month Walks

We meet at 930am outside 30TempletonSt Castlemaine and carpool to the start of walks. Bring water, morning tea and lunch for all walks. Walks normally finish mid afternoon. People of all ages and non-members welcome.  No cost.

Sunday 21Jun15 Goughs Range – c.5km
This small 161 ha state forest is little visited, but has some nice attractions: grey box woodland with understorey of Golden Wattle and some dense stands of Varnish Wattle. There are great views from the top of the range across to Cairn Curran and beyond. Note: this little forest is down for a management burn this autumn. If the burn is severe we may have to reschedule the walk elsewhere.
Leader: Bernard Slattery 03 5470 5161

Sunday 16Aug15 Tarilta Gorge (& Upper Loddon State Forest) c.6km
Our circuit walk commences at the junction of the Goldfields Track and Porcupine Ridge Road. Approximately 2 km down the Goldfields Track we descend to a wide green valley leading to Tarilta Creek. After many stream crossings north we turn into a glorious long and wide valley leading back to the Goldfields Track and the start point.
Leader: Richard Piesse  0448 572 867

Nature walk and activity for early Primary school kids
Sunday 30Aug15
Castlemaine Botanical Gardens
Meet at the Tea Rooms at 10am.
Contact: Naomi Raftery 0422 585 585

Youth Bush Walks
Sunday 26Jul15
Garfield Wheel
Meet at the Continuing Education Building at 930am. Walk will be at least 5km. Free event. Lunch is included.
Contact: Nioka 03 5472 4609


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Droughts and flooding rains, El Nino and droughts are back

Recently there was an article published about a regional farmer trying to cope from the 2011 floods to now, drought conditions. A farmer’s story: Floods give way to the threat of crippling drought

The Bureau of Meteorology has officially declared, we are in the midst of another El Niño event, which is likely to lead to prolonged drier, hotter conditions across much of eastern Australia.


Another drought will not only affect farmers, but has the potential to affect all areas of how function and live.


Further reading.

Major El Nino declared by Bureau of Meteorology; drier, hotter conditions predicted

El Nino conditions hit

of droughts and flooding rains

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