The Preston River to Ocean Regional Park project is a four-year partnership between SWCC, the City of Bunbury and the Department of Parks and Wildlife. The project, launched in 2013, aims to protect the Preston River to Ocean Regional Park’s ecological, social and cultural values, which are under threat from a range of impacts associated with its close proximity to a growing urban population.
In 2015/16 strategic weed control was undertakento combat invasive weed species. Threeexisting revegetation sites were infilled and two new revegetation sites were also planted with native seedlings.
Strategic fencing and access control gates have also been installed to protect the park from the ongoing issue of illegal 4WD access, which has devastating impacts on the vegetation health. Ten new signs were installed at key sites throughout the Park.
Pest animal control of foxes and rabbits was undertaken in the park area to reduce threats to flora and fauna. Dieback management has continued with ongoing phosphite injection work to protect susceptible vegetation and a Dieback consultant developed a new list of dieback management recommendations for the Park area.
The Bunbury community has embraced the project with 726 attendees and volunteers at 17 events and activities run and delivered over 2015-16, and sharing of project related information through local social media networks. Most notably, a series of school incursions engaged three schools and over 250 people and 195 volunteers participated in 6 planting days.
In the past year, the project has continued to meet and/or exceed planned outputs. Five revegetation sites have been planted with over 6,000 native seedlings, strategic weed control has occurred over 16ha, fox baiting over 54ha, rabbit RHDV virus and rabbit warren fumigation has been undertaken over 105ha, 5.5km of fencing has been installed, 220 trees have been treated for dieback, and 3 dieback technical reports have been produced.
Project partner Department of Parks & Wildlife has undertaken flora surveys and discovered four new occurrences of the Swan Coastal Plain Claypan Threatened Ecological Community within Manea and Loughton Park. 17 events have been delivered with 726 people engaged including six schools.
Four schools and over 150 students were involved in planting seedlings at the revegetation sites.
In addition, 10 signs have been installed at strategic locations throughout the Park, to educate the public about the value of the area.
These activities protect and enhance the ecological, social and cultural values of the Preston River to Ocean Regional Park for future generations.
“The bushland in the proposed Regional Park contains amazing flora and fauna, and is a community asset for the future worth protecting. The active involvement of the community is vital to the successful long term management of the area.”
Pip Marshall, SWCC Project Manager.
Plans for 2016/17 include continuation of the extensive and ongoing weed control program, dieback management, infill plantings at strategic sites, and pest animal control. Further community events, general community engagement and a project closure event with all stakeholders to celebrate the project’s achievements are also planned.
The sequence of vegetated landforms (Quindalup/ Spearwood/Bassendean Dunes-Pinjarra Plain) encompassed in the Preston River to Ocean [Proposed] Regional Park corridor is unusual in the [Swan Coastal] Plain and does not appear to occur elsewhere’ (Keighery and Keighery, 1999).
1.95km of fencing installed
5.5km of fencing
38 people engaged
726 people engaged
Pip Marshall and Natalie Olsen