Something to do as you exercise in Glebe during the COVID-19 times of home-stay
by Judy Christie
I thought I’d pass on a Birdlife Australia webpage with some Birding at Home ideas.
I have started doing a regular exercise activity/bird survey based on the Birdlife Australia preferred protocol of recording bird species and numbers for 20 minutes over an area of two hectares. I created an observation area covering the Johnstons Creek saltmarsh as well as sites in the Johnstons Creek canal from the footbridge in front of the Tramsheds to a northerly location just past the light rail arches.
At this time of the year, young birds are often dispersing to unusual places and the effects of the bushfires may also be contributing to this. Several small brown birds have been spotted in my patch including a Golden Whistler and a Grey Fantail – the latter a first for my Glebe bird list. A pair of Willie Wagtails is always around and there is still a male Red-rumped Parrot, strangely alone and often roosting in the Melaleuca trees beside the Creek.
Naturalisation of Johnstons Creek canal – an update
by Nick Sangster
Sydney Water has commenced the massive and exciting task of naturalising Johnstons Creek canal from the level of The Crescent to Rozelle Bay.
The first concrete portions have been poured including the meandering central channel and preparation of the banks, which will be made from sandstone blocks.
The rain and tides have made it challenging. Sydney Water have tagged 20 or 30 additional trees (mainly Casuarina) to be removed from the bank of the canal. They claim the trees will be impacted by the works; the Casuarinas are not ideal trees for the longer term as they limit options to plant better habitat shrubs.
Going forward it will be important to see the final detailed landscape plans. The project will proceed in two stages. The first and current work (see photo) is the stretch upstream from the Dalgal Way road bridge, including the new wetland near The Crescent where the work depot is now situated. The second is from Dalgal Way downstream to the Harbour and will finish about a year after the upper stretch.
Given the delay in finishing the whole project, it is worth investigating earlier vegetation of the upper region to provide a year’s head start. On the other hand, there is no tidal movement in the Creek during the project and a return to a saltier environment might change the ideal plant species mix.
While the work plan is probably already set, getting clarity on the planting plan and schedule would be a useful basis on which to optimise bird and aquatic habitats for the long term.
Andrew Wood and members of the Blue Wren Subcommittee