Saturday, 14 November saw more than 30 eager Coastcare volunteers heading down to Bucasia Beach to help rehabilitate the dune systems to improve the habitat for our wildlife including nesting turtles, and local and migratory birds.
The event saw volunteers collect over 30 bags of invasive weeds from the area, including mother-of-millions, mother-in-laws tongue, painted spurge, guinea grass and cobblers peg which created space for native plants to re-establish. For their hard work, volunteers were each rewarded with two native seedlings to plant in their own backyards!
Coast and biodiversity project officer Jess Berryman spoke to the volunteers about the importance of removing invasive weed species. She said weeds caused a number of issues on the local beaches as they provided little stabilisation for the dune systems, whilst native plants generally had substantial root systems which both stabilised the dunes and prevented or reduced erosion.
“During storm events, rain and wind erode dune systems where they are not adequately stabilised reducing habitat for native animals including marine turtles and migratory birds, risking cultural heritage values, homes, infrastructure, and reducing recreational opportunities,” she said.
“The key message is native species belong on the beaches, not weeds.
“It is our responsibility to ensure weeds are not spread from our backyards through prioritising the purchase of native species, by using designated beach access points instead of creating paths through the dune systems (which can spread weeds), and by participating in events like Coastcare to protect our beaches and the delicate ecosystems they sustain.”