Category Archives: Goat Hills

Goat Hills October 2017

Nice Weather, Nice Country

Tuesday 3 October 2017
After some
indifferent weather over recent times it was so pleasant in Goat Hills today;
in fact, it wasn’t long before warm tops were being shed.  A patch of Erica that we previously ran out of
time to clear, remained to be removed. Once completed we moved over to a dry north
facing slope that had not previously been inspected.  Old Erica at various locations was found and
cut down and treated with herbicide. More remains to done and the range to be
checked expanded.  
Whist there
Adrian found signs of an old building with daffodils and a clump of Agapanthus. 

 

During
morning break, Rob Whittle from Glenorchy council told us about bushfire mitigation
plans and fire management for the various plant communities in the region. The
pack of chocolate coated biscuits that he brought along was also appreciated, and
we kept him talking until the packet was finished.
 

Site prior to work


Site after removing weeds 



   


Old building site


 

 

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Damp Bush – Goat Hills

Tuesday 2 May 2017

Goat Hills
Although the work was cancelled because of the weather
prevailing on the morning, some activities went ahead in lieu.  Harry from Glenorchy City wanted to survey a
site in Goat Hills to assess how much work would be involved in clearing the
Erica remaining.
 
When I arrived, there was a new volunteer, Chris, was
waiting.  It transpired that the Wildcare
booking system had stopped sending advisory emails to the group and so I was
unaware that he would be there.  Wildcare
has been told about the problem and hopefully the system has now been rectified.
 
From the time, we started up the fire trail the weather
turned fine and there were sunny periods. It is always a quandary with the
weather, but a decision on cancelling had to be made by 7:30 am, but the bush remained
quite wet which is not ideal conditions for working in.
 

 

Back to the survey, the area has patches of Erica of differing
concentrations and covers some 1.3 hectares.  With luck a contractor can be organised to do
the work over the next few months.
 

Intruding on a Reptile – Goat Hills

Tuesday 6 December 2016

Whilst working on a patch I noticed the end of a tail poking out from under some litter and realised it was a Bluetongue lizard.  It remained motionless for about 15 minutes or so while I worked nearby and eventually decided it was safe to emerge after I got a bit further away.

Bluetongue is hard to see  arrows mark it






















Thought it was safe to come out of hiding



I tried a pair of insect repelling overalls that were a gift, but it is hard to know how effective they were. There were a few mosquitoes about but I don’t think anyone got bitten and neither did I, so the test was somewhat inconclusive.



As for the work, we discovered that the patch of Erica leftover from the last visit was more extensive than thought. We did make a good fist of it but as we did not have as many helping as sometimes, some had to be left to finish another time; probably next May. 


Ted busy working on the Erica at Goat Hills.
 

 

Poorer for the work – Goat Hills Erica

Tuesday 4 October 2016

Well some of our group were certainly somewhat poorer after putting in a good day of work. Between morning break and lunch our packs were tampered with and goods stolen.  One pack top zip was open and wallet half hanging out and on investigation found money and iPhone gone.  Most of the packs were close to a fire trail and two young people on bikes were seen going past and one of our workers did actually wonder if our packs were safe. Anyway it is a lesson learnt and from now on packs will be kept well away from passing eyes.

Greg at work on Erica

As to the work, patches of mostly mature Erica were located at several locations and all but one group were removed. Some spots had old stumps from our work there more than 10 years ago, whilst other areas had never been tackled before.  Despite the long time lapse without follow up things weren’t too bad at all and the native bush was doing OK and the birds sounded good.

Site with Erica before clearing

Same site with Erica now cleared

Inroads Into The Thick Of It – Goat Hills

 

Tuesday 19 and Wednesday 20 July 2016
For years we have known of a thick patch of Erica at Goat Hills but have confined our efforts to just contain any expansion from the site.  An offer was received from NRMSouth for a Green Army group for two days, and the chance to tackle this problem area meant a quick acceptance.


Green Army in the scrub at Goat Hills

 

 
 The extent of the weed removal was very good and a considerable belt was cleared.  Much of the Erica was within thick bush and often the many these weeds were massed together in myriad of trunks. Fortunately, the soil was soft from all the rain over recent weeks and could be pulled out.
 
The effort from this cheerful bunch of people is greatly appreciated by both the Wellington Park Bushcare Group and Jarrah from Glenorchy Council. And Sophia, the Green Army supervisor makes a tasty chocolate cake.

Green Army  at Lunch Goat Hills

 

 

The site is 13000 sq metres (1.3 Hectares) The area cleared was approx. 1,000 sq m which about   half or more of the concentrated outbreak zone with the balance more with sporadic patches  .


Thanks to NRMSouth for
making it possible for us to obtain the Green Army for the two days.



The area worked is marked on map below and a satellite view is further below 

 

 

 
 

 

Bush Getting Better Goat Hills April 2016

5 April 2016
 
Getting a lift up to Goat Hills is a great boon, but when we have to get back on foot the old route is a much pleasanter way both visually and ease of walking. To enable us to go this way a car shuffle was arranged and it worked out well.

Bush scene in Goat Hills Eucalypts with dense understory of Wattle  (Acacia riceana)
Some plants in the work area were looking in a poor state and that included quite a number of our number one enemy up there, Erica. Initially those on the flatter spots were cleared and despite it being so dry the plants mostly were able to be pulled out with aid of pliers.  It seemed that the soil was gritty enough not to resist.  This was not always the case on the rockier locations higher up where much more needed cutting. Here also the understory of Acacia riceana is quite prolific so there is a lot of weaving about to avoid the spikes when searching.
The upshot for the day was that all of the planned work area of 2.5 hectares was now cleared of Erica. It has taken us 4 sessions, but we have been in that position a few times in the 15 years working the site. But it is getting easier and quicker, which is encouraging.  Our plan is now to push back the front further west into a new zone that is in difficult terrain due to the vegetation denseness impeding access to locate the weeds.    
We enjoy the bush at Goat Hills but we certainly didn’t appreciate the illegal bike rider zooming along the firetrail nor the noise it generated.
 
Lunch Brian, Greg, Chris and Ted

Bush scene in Goat Hills Eucalypts with dense understory of Wattle  (Acacia riceana)

Warm Work – Goat Hills

Tuesday 2 February 2016

With 8 places for volunteers in the vehicles available it is always going to be unknown if there will be room for everyone, but ton this occasion we had the number to fill the spots and so no one had to walk up the steep track to Goat Hills. The return trip is a different story as there is only one vehicle for that there was 4 ready volunteers for that. When the very steep section was reached it prompted discussion of the alternative route down and we have resolved to try to work a car shuffle next time by leaving a vehicle at Montrose so we can walk down what is a much more pleasant track.

A visit to our packs by a snake that once disturbed just slithered gently away; I missed it myself but the others were animated and seemed to have enjoyed the spectacle. It was not as unwelcome as the ticks that seemed to be about.; hopefully no one went home with an undesirable passenger.

It was quite warm working especially during times in full sun and no wonder as the temperature recorded in Hobart got above 32°.

Close to all in the Spanish Heath in the immediate surrounds was cleared and then moved to a site last worked on February 2015 but only found a few plants. Some of this area had been sprayed since which considerably reduced the work. On passing another area, whilst heading back to cars, a number of mostly smallish plants 30-50cm were noticed and will be tackled on the next visit in April.

Bush scene near Montrose FT in Goat Hills

Bush at Goat Hills