Vigilant volunteers sweep southern beaches

Eurobodalla Council’s southern beach sweep got underway last month, with a small but vigilant crew from the Far South Coast Landcare Association patrolling the fore and hind dunes of all beaches from Wallaga Lake Beach to Dalmeny Beach.

Volunteers pulled out any invasive weeds they found, including sea spurge, beach daisy, lantana and bitou bush. The good news is that sea spurge numbers on most beaches were only in the double or even single digits and only a couple of dozen beach daisy plants were removed from the entire stretch of coast.

While this is a terrific result that comes after many years of hard work, we must and will remain vigilant. Seed from plants in Victoria and Tasmania will continue to strand and germinate locally and there will still be viable seed in the dunes that, once germinated, will need to be controlled.

We have the same beach sweep crew and local volunteers to thank for collecting and removing some six cubic metres of litter from our beaches in 2016-17. The greatest litter accumulations tend to be on the most readily vehicle-accessible beaches, especially adjacent to caravan parks. Please report illegal dumping to Council’s rangers and make sure litter is disposed of correctly – we all have a part to play.

Eurobodalla’s southern beaches from Wallaga Lake to Dalmeny are now proudly part of the Protect the Coastal Wilderness Project. This program has been running for over 10 years from the Victorian border to Bermagui and aims to reduce weed and marine debris across all far south coast beaches to very low maintenance levels.

The project is a collaborative effort between the Far South Coast Landcare Association, Bega Valley Shire Council, National Parks and Wildlife Service, Local Lands Service and Eurobodalla Shire Council, with funding provided by all partners and the NSW Government’s Envirotrust program.

The work also ties in with Council’s dune weeds project that is implementing similar actions north of Dalmeny to South Durras. Eurobodalla Landcare groups have assisted in these activities and are waiting patiently for rain so they can plant out local dune species in areas where weed removal has occurred.

If you can help with clean ups or weed control, why not join Landcare or Eurobodalla Marine Debris group? All volunteers are welcome. To find out more, contact Emma Patyus about Landcare (4474 7300) or Paul Martin about beach weeds and marine debris sweeps (44741269).

Above: Thanks to vigilant volunteers like Yuin Kelly, invasive species including sea spurge (pictured) and beach daisy have been reduced to very low levels on Eurobodalla’s southern beaches.

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