Bruny Island Cat Control Project – Update by Jenny Boyer

In this article Jenny Boyer gives an update on the Federally funded feral cat project, Kingborough Council progress on domestic cat control, the recent Wildlife Monitoring project and suggests the use of Feral Scan phone app to record any sightings you have of feral species on Bruny.

“At the end of May I attended a meeting of the Steering Committee for this Project and was again amazed at the breadth and support around the table with DPIPWE, Parks, Kingborough Council, Ten Lives Cat Centre (Hobart), UTas, Tasmanian Land Conservancy and the Threatened Species Recovery Hub sharing their knowledge and experience. Staff from the Federal Office of Threatened Species and Department of Environment participated by phone hook-up.

The Federal funding contribution requires the project to demonstrate both, a reduction in feral cat numbers and data to inform the impact of cat control on the numbers of threatened and conservation significant species. This is difficult to quantify without knowing what you have to start with.

Camera monitoring has identified many cats, including new litters, with 5 different cats identified on 1 camera near the viewing walkway. Of the 34 cameras at the Neck, 26 have detected at least 1 feral cat and the actual numbers of individual cats are currently being verified.
Continue reading “Bruny Island Cat Control Project – Update by Jenny Boyer”

Bruny Island trials world-leading battery storage system to secure energy future

Tasmania’s Bruny Island community is forging ahead with a world-leading trial of battery storage this weekend.The new system will allow thirty-five residential customers to create a “virtual power plant”, that both supports their own energy needs and feeds back into the grid.
Andrew Fraser, Network Innovation Team Leader at TasNetworks, joined Leon Compton on ABC Local Radio to discuss the CONSORT Bruny Island Battery Trial.
Listen here – duration: 10min 53sec

Survey of the State of the World’s Wetlands: tell us about a wetland you know

Why undertake this survey?
Knowledge about the status and trends of the world’s remaining wetlands is very patchy and limited. To improve this knowledge, and so as to better inform wetland policy and decision-making, we are conducting a simple worldwide questionnaire survey to gather better knowledge on the state of wetlands.
Who is organising the survey?
The survey is a collaborative initiative between the Society of Wetland Scientists (SWS Ramsar Section), the World Wetland Network (WWN) and the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT), with the help of the Ramsar Convention Secretariat.

How can you help?
Are you familiar with a wetland? If yes, then you can help: the survey is open to anyone who can tell us about the state of a wetland(s), small or large, about which they know. The questionnaire asks for your opinion about the state of a wetland, and should take no longer than 10 minutes of your time to complete.

How to complete the questionnaire?
Go to:  http://www.worldwetnet.org/about-us/world-wetlands-survey-2017   You can complete the questionnaire on-line in either English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian or Chinese. If you prefer, for some languages you can download the questionnaire as an Excel form, currently available in English, FrenchSpanish, Arabic and Japanese. Save your completed form (with the name of the wetland in the filename) and email it to: wli@wwt.org.uk

Is there a deadline for completing the questionnaire?
Yes, please complete and return your questionnaire(s) by 30 September 2017.

How will the survey results be analysed?
Results will be analysed and reported at global and regional scales – results for individual wetlands will not be made public.

How will the survey results be communicated?
Summary reports will be made available publicly, through the WWN, SWS and other websites. All contributors will be kept informed when the results become available. The results will also be prepared for publication in a peer-reviewed scientific journal. We also anticipate showcasing the results of the survey during the next Ramsar Convention Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP13) in 2018.

Do you have any questions?
If you have any further questions, or need help in accessing or completing the questionnaire, please contact Chris Rostron at the World Wetland Network on Chris.Rostron@wwt.co.uk .

And finally … Many thanks in advance to everyone who knows and cares about wetlands for helping improve the knowledge about the world’s wetlands by completing the survey questionnaire.

Nick Davidson & Rob McInnes (SWS Ramsar Section), Chris Rostron (WWN) and Matthew Simpson (WWT)

Latest on the Battery Trial

CONSORT are pleased to report that batteries installed under the Bruny Island Battery Trial were used for support for the first time over the Easter and Anzac day period. As only three batteries had been installed and commissioned prior at that stage, they were unable to draw enough energy from the batteries to provide significant support to the network peak.  This meant that there was very little effect on the use of the generator, which was required to be operated seven times over that period.  The good news is that this provided us with a great opportunity for a test run and all batteries responded as expected. They requested support on ten occasions and discharged around 260 kWh from the batteries over this time. This is roughly the equivalent of ten days consumption for an average household. The installation of batteries is now ramping up, with another four ready to be commissioned. The next major event will be over the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June.

The Trial has continued to receive attention from media, local community members and the energy industry.  A report on the Trial featuring an interview with one of the first participants to have their system installed was aired on ABC News on Friday 14 April, with a follow-up print article published the following day.  Members of the CONSORT Project Team have been invited to talk about the Trial at several industry events; a copy of the slides presented at a recent event hosted by the Alternative Technology Association’s Tas South Branch can be viewed here, and a recording of the presentation can be viewed here.

The official launch of the Trial has been postponed; CONSORT expect that this will now take place during June. 

CONSORT  confirm that there will be a third and final intake of Trial Participants.  As per the previous two intakes, Participants for the remaining places will once again be selected via a ballot process during May.  All previous applicants will automatically be included in the ballot, unless they have advised us otherwise.

Pressures of increased visitation

BIEN has participated both in the community consultation involved in the development of the State Government sponsored Bruny Island Destination Action Plan and in the Implementation Group meetings to effect measures in the plan.  We have concerns that this process cannot address the real issues identified by the community consultations, that being to match demands of increasing visitor numbers with the capacity of the island to manage without negative impacts. The press release and the document below it detail these concerns.

Destination Action Plan

 

 

 

 

Continue reading “Pressures of increased visitation”

Wildlife Monitoring Field Day and BBQ

Neck Campground, Bruny Island, 6th May 2017, 11am-2pm

Echidna on a sunny afternoon
Echidna on a sunny afternoon
Feral cat
Feral cat approaching the Neck bird colonies

Over the past 6 months Bruny Island landholders have been collecting valuable scientific data about native and feral species from all parts of Bruny Island.

This is an opportunity to come along and hear about what this exciting citizen science project has discovered!

The field day will involve:

  • Talks by local wildlife biologists and landholders about the findings of the project
  • An interactive discussion about the future of wildlife monitoring and conservation on Bruny Island.

And will be followed by a BBQ with vegetarian options.

All are welcome!

Please register your interest:

Daniel Sprod 0428 240 007 or daniel.sprod@gmail.com

Storm Bay fish farm expansion

Huon Aquaculture announced an intended extension of their salmon farming lease off Trumpeter Bay. This is in addition to both of the other large aquaculture players – Tassal and Petuna, seeking similar leases.

A recent meeting between Yachting Australia and Tasmanian Salmonoid Growers Association noted:

“The salmonoid industry wishes to expand and the Huon/Channel area has reached its allowable nitrogen cap while Macquarie Harbour has a similar issue that has received publicity in recent months.

“In moving to Storm Bay, the industry claim they are looking to move to deeper water in ‘offshore’ locations. “The industry saw this meeting as being part of their ‘community consultation’ however there was no discussion invited as to appropriateness of the expansion or locations suggested.

“Subsequent to the meeting the Marine Farming Branch at DPIPWE have provided the RYCT with a chart (depth in fathoms) showing both the current and proposed lease areas in Storm Bay. (DPIPWE advise that as of 17th Nov 2016 the companies are still to make formal applications so the proposed lease areas may be subject to change).”