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Last modified:
Thursday 8th June 2017

Past Projects

Meldanda SWAMP Scouts

During September 2013 Meldanda had the support of about 300 scouts who held their annual SWAMP camp there. The scouts spread mulch, made paths in the Bushgardens, steps to the Frog Pond, bird and bat boxes. The space at Meldanda worked really well for a large camp and they even had room to set up for archery.


Judas goats in the Murray

Feral goats (Capra hircus) can have a significant impact on the environment and agricultural production and are a potential reservoir and vector of en-demic and exotic diseases. Although often considered a pest, feral goats are also an important resource, harvested commercially, primarily for meat. Control methods include trapping, mustering, exclusion fencing, ground shooting and shooting from helicopters.
Radio-collared 'Judas' goats are used to locate groups of feral goats that are difficult to find by other methods. This technique involves attaching a radio-collar to a feral goat and re-leasing it with the expectation that it will join up with other goats. Goats are particularly suited to the Judas method as they are a highly social species and will seek the companionship of any other feral goats in the area.
Once the position of the feral herd is established, the goats accompanying the Judas animal are either mustered or destroyed by shooting. The Judas goat is usually allowed to escape so that it will search out other groups of feral goats.
The Mid Murray LAP has sourced funding through a Community NRM Grant to run a Judas goat project in the local region to locate and remove feral goats populations that have been seen in our local conservation parks. Two fe-male goats were desexed and fitted with radio collars, one was released near the Ridley CP and the other near the Swan Reach CP. The LAP receives two satellite fixings a day which provide the locations of each goat which gives us their last known location before we go out in the field to radio track the goats to see if they have found a herd.

Judas goats help locate ferals
River News

War on Wheel Cactus

In February the LAP hosted a CARE Team meeting at Nildottie, the meetings are an opportunity for project officers and other work colleagues to exchange information and profile some of the projects in the host LAPís region. At the end of our meeting our field trip was to Steven Kroehnís property who participated in the Cactus demonstration day we held at Nildottie back in December last year, Steve was so impressed with the ease of using the equipment demonstrated by Scott Hutchens from the SA MDB NRM Board that he went out and bought his own back pack to keep in his ute all the time. Steve proceeded to cover his entire property to combat Wheel Cactus over 6000 acres. Steve use to use heavy machinery on his property to dig up and dispose of cactus on his place, in and around remnant vegetation, so using a light weight back pack has been welcome relief in controlling this perilous weed. It would be great if all landholders were this enthusiastic

Noonawirra Wetland

Why do we manage wetlands when they have looked after themselves for so long and have seemed to survive okay? Well one great reason is to manage the carp population that we have been responsible for introducing into our river systems. If we can manage and protect some of our wetlands from these destructive fish, we will help to preserves some natural habitat for our water birds, native fish and aquatic plants that would otherwise struggle to exist. The way we can manage these pest fish is by excluding them from wetlands at the appropriate time to prevent them from breeding in the wetlands using structures. One such wetland that is currently having a regulating structure installed is Noonawirra wetland. Noonawirra is one of the most beautiful wetlands in our stretch of river, the other day we undertook a general round of monitoring and a fish survey with Mel Tucker from the SAMDBNRM Boards wetland program. Fyke nets were set up over night and the next day we went to see what the catch was. Much to our dismay in a fyke net set on the river side of the wetland and one within were full of massive carp. We caught approximately 200 carp, with the biggest measuring 600mm. It was an awful task removing them from the fyke net and ensuring they did not re-enter our river system. There was also a number of Gambusia captured, which as the mosquito fish introduced years ago that doesn't actually eat mosquito larvae! Another unsuccessful biological control option.
It wasn't all doom and gloom, there was a new rare plant found around the wetland, some turtles, Bony Bream, Flatheaded Carp Gudgeon (native), Unspecked Hardy Heads and plenty of shrimp and freshwater prawns.

Pembroke Community Work

Year 9 science students from Pembroke have been doing community service work in our region as part of their school camp. This year they have been removing Prickly Pear, a Weed of National Significance from the Ridley Conservation Park.

Murray Plains Cycle Trek

The Murray Plains Cycle Trek has been created for you to enjoy the wonders of our Murray Plains Region. The trek meanders its way along some of the quiet back roads from the River to the Ranges. It allows you to enjoy the historic townships and our precious remnant roadside vegetation. It can be cycled in short sections or the total 54km linear length. You can also find food, accomodation and other services along the way.

Murray Plains Cycle Trek Brochure

Invasive species management for ecosystem restoration in conservation parks.

The objective of this project is to improve ecosystem function in 3 conservation parks in the Mid Murray region. The parks have been set aside to conserve native vegetation, bird and wombat habitats. What have we done? We have had fox baiting done in all 3 parks undertaken by Conservation Volunteers Australia, we have had rabbit baiting and warrens ripped in the Marne Valley CP and 28 volunteers walk through Swan Reach CP searching for cactus plants. We didnt find cactus but located a Mallee Fowl mound.

Roadside Vegetation

Native vegeation clearance
Native Vegetation Guidelines

Butterfly Garden

The Butterfly garden has been established along the Marne River that traverses its way through the Meldanda Farm property. Flowering plants have been selected that provide a food source or act as a host plant for the life cycle of our local butterfly species. Students from Cambrai Area School have created beautiful butterfly mosaics that have been selectively places throughout the garden.

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