APRIL 2021 BRANCH UPDATE

Aaaah at last, we welcome the more moderate temperatures and sunny skies as summer fades into whatever passes for ‘autumn’ in the tropics. Welcome also to another new member, Ruth, who joined us since our last update. Dare we aim for at least one new member every month?

WHAT’S COMING UP??

FRIDAY 16th APRIL ~ NQCC’s Green Drinks: If you want to meet like-minded people (you know, the ones who care about looking after the planet) in a social situation, do get along to one of NQCC’s monthly Green Drinks nights. This month the venue is South Townsville’s grand old Commonwealth Hotel, between 6-9pm.  Read more here.

IMG_4470MAGNETIC ISLAND WALK ~ NOW ON SUNDAY 2nd MAY!! This is the trip that was planned for 24 April but postponed due to rain. Apart from the date, arrangements are unchanged. We are planning to walk the Hawkins Point track to the spectacular lookout before spending some time on Picnic Bay beach on a falling tide. 

We will catch the 8.45am ferry and then the Picnic Bay bus, alighting at Granite Street –  the closest stop to the start of the track. Bring water, hats, walking shoes, sunscreen and whatever you need for snacks and lunch. Bring swimmers if so inclined (there’s a stinger-proof enclosure at Picnic Bay) and of course cameras and binoculars are useful but optional extras. Please let us know if you are coming and provide your phone number in case of cancellation.

FRIDAY MAY 7th ~ A Walk in the Park with Queensland’s Chief Scientist. A wonderful opportunity to meet Prof Hugh Possingham, conservation biologist and Queensland’s chief scientist , for an early-morning bird tour of our very own Anderson Park. This is a FREE event but you need to register. See this link.

SUNDAY MAY 23rd:  We are planning a joint trip with the Cassowary Coast & Hinchinbrook Branch, to walk into beautiful Kennedy Bay south of Mission Beach, on Sunday 23 May.  It’s 5 years since we last did this lovely coastal walk but our friends from the CC&H Branch do this walk each May to coincide with the date of the landing at this site by the Edmund Kennedy expedition in 1848. More to follow … but please let us know if interested.

WHAT’S BEEN HAPPENING ??

March trip report: Fifteen people turned up for our meander through the Rowes Bay wetlands, still with plenty of birds and plenty of water and you can read the report here. Two keen birders/ photographers/ wetlanders joined us for the first time and were pleased to have discovered a spot they hadn’t known about before. Introducing locals (whether long-term or newly arrived) to places “in our backyard” that they haven’t previously discovered is one of the rewards of these walks. 

alligator Ck 2Camping is over at Alligator Creek: Some members will already be aware that the Mt Elliot section of the Cape Bowling Green National Park is closed until the end of July for major re-development works. What we did not know until a few days ago was that, when it re-opens, the camping area will be gone and you will no longer be able to take a short drive down the highway after work on Friday, put up your tent under the watchful eye of a kookaburra and have a weekend in nature. Generations of Townsvilleans would have camped there at some stage of their lives, for some it may have been their first camping experience. Why are we losing this special resource? Please read this post.

Trees fall in Anzac Park: Many of us were shocked and saddened by the loss of two beautiful trees from the Queensland Heritage-listed Anzac Park. To read more and/or to add your name to an open letter of protest, and a separate petition to ask TCC to re-introduce tree protection by-laws and establish a register of significant trees, read this post.

Now we are 5 – our AGM report: Our AGM was held as advertised on March 28, once again using NQCC’s convenient meeting room, which we much appreciate. The President’s report, which was circulated to all members, is now posted on this blog and you can read it here. We were delighted to welcome Pam Cocks as an addition to our four-member committee – all of whom gamely allowed themselves to be re-elected for another 12 months. But none of us come without “use by” dates, so we would be delighted to hear from members with the interest and enthusiasm to help keep the Branch going (and growing!). You don’t have to leap in and join the committee (at least not yet!) but you would be welcome to attend our meetings and learn more about what goes on behind the scenes. 

Keeping Bunnings honest: Many gardeners probably buy plants or other needs from the ubiquitous Bunnings. And, during the last twelve months millions of Australians became increasingly focussed on their homes and gardens, making Bunnings among the pandemic’s most thriving businesses. So, now is the time to urge them to take greater responsibilty for the recycling and/or re-use of their plastic products and packaging. One of our members provided this link to a petition asking them to do just that, so please add your voice. You might like to be even more pro-active next time you visit. Ask “Where is your recycling bin?”  or, if buying plants, ask if you can return washed pots for re-use. If they say no, suggest they look at ways of sterilising used pots or use other materials instead of that non-recyclable black plastic.

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