Summer Newsletter 2023

Summer Newsletter

We would like to acknowledge the lands of the Bunurong /Boonwurrung people, traditional custodians of this place known as Ballern Ballern (place of 2 creeks). We pay our respects to the Land, the people, and their elders past, present and emerging and recognise that sovereignty to the land has never been ceded. We promise to walk softly and gently on this land.

A note from our Co-Ordinator - Pia Spreen

Welcome to Sunshine 2023 and we hope you have had a welcome break. 

Summer is the season when all our indigenous grasses are producing seed. The indigenous grasses we would typically see in the Reserve include: Weeping grass Microleana stipoides; Wallaby grass Rytidosperma geniculata; Spear grass Stipa mollis; Kangaroo grass Themeda triandra. 
Have you noticed some areas of the reserve where the Kikuyu grass is looking lush green and VERY thick? Climbing up trees? This Kikuyu grass is a native to Africa, it was introduced to gardens here as it responded well to mowing and provides a thick grass layer growing via rhizhome (rootstalks.) HOWEVER in a bushland setting where it has no boundaries (requiring large grazing animals, Giraffes, Rhino’s and the like) it can create problems. The thatch that it produces over the years can make for a high, dangerous fuel load.
Most of our indigenous grasses (apart from the Poa’s tussocks) are low to the ground and are less prone to fuel load. Whist walking around the Reserve take a look at the grasses and see if you a can recognise indigenous vs exotic grasses.  Better still come along to a Friends group working bee to learn more. 
What’s happening in the Reserve. 
Mornington Peninsula Shire continues to use Naturelinks contractor to undertake their regular weed management actions throughout the 5 different sites - Alexandrina, Central, West, Jackson and Upper.

Recently, Naturelinks has also been given the Melbourne Water preventative maintenance works for the creekline which includes the bed and 10m bank.
This work is like receiving the missing jigsaw piece to the weed puzzle. The works start at the footbridge and head upstream to the Panorama crossover (880metres.)  Naturelinks are discovering many different weed species in the creekline including English Ivy, Blackberry, Passionfruit, Agapanthus,Honeysuckle vine and Asparagus fern. There are some good quality areas along with problem areas.

Residents of properties backing onto the Reserve can help to prevent garden escapees from getting a foothold in the Reserve by making sure their fence line is clear of weedy species and any seed is removed.

Recently Sunshine Reserve Conservation Fireguard Group met with Mornington Peninsula Shire Fire Prevention Officer Liam Omara  to discuss the APZ (asset protection zone ) adjacent to the Northern creek arm, Upper Sunshine. They discussed the specifications needed to comply with the laws. This requires some regular slashing to be undertaken and some uplifting of the existing trees. We also discussed the extensive erosion and will be re engaging Melbourne Water to gain better understanding and a plan moving forward.

MPS contractor Naturelinks will also be starting works for the recently successful Biolink grant. This will include Woody weed and scrambler weed removal. Some preparation for the National Tree day planting site will also commence.

Pia Spreen

Our Sponsors

We wanted to take a moment to again express our deepest gratitude to our wonderful sponsors for their continued support. Without them, our mission to help preserve and protect the ecosystem here in Sunshine Reserve would not be possible.

First, a big thank you to the team at Hop Nation for their generous donation. Their support in 2022 and 2023 has enabled us to commit to important conservation initiatives, including our involvement in National Tree Day on 6 August.  We are truly grateful for their commitment to the environment and their partnership with us.

We would also like to extend our appreciation to the Warlimont & Nutt team for their support in helping finance our new website and expertise with community engagement. This contribution has allowed us to reach many more people in our local community sharing the importance of conservation and their role in preserving our precious Biolink.

In addition to our current sponsors, we would like to take this opportunity to reach out to potential new partners. If you or your organisation are interested in supporting our mission, or you know someone who may be interested, contact us to learn more about the various sponsorship opportunities available. Please call Angie Fly on 0408 188 384.

Once again, thank you to our current sponsors for their continued support. Together, we can make a real difference and tip the balance back in favour of remnant bush which will protect Sunshine Reserve for generations to come.

Save the Dates and Stay Connected

Sunshine Working Bee 

9am Sunday 29 January 2023, Meet at the bridge McLeod Firetrack

NOTE: February Working Bee cancelled due to Clean-up Australia Day

We resume on 4th Sunday of every month March to November

clean up australia day

Clean Up Australia Day

Sunday 5 March 2023

Mt Martha

Living Culture

Sunshine Members Guided Walk with Lionel

Sunday April 30 March 2023 To avoid disappointment renew your membership  

Mcleod Road / Jackson Street entrance, Mt Martha

National Tree Day

National Tree Day

Sunday 6 August 2023

Sunshine Reserve, Mount Martha

Sunshine Reserve Memberships

Thank You

Thank you to our wonderful members for your continued support. To those lapsed or non-members, please join us to protect our natural bio-link and become a member of the Sunshine Reserve Conservation Group 2023!

A yearly subscription not only supports the important work we do to preserve and protect the local ecosystem, but includes exclusive access to members-only events, quarterly updates and a free bush kit if you choose to help with monthly working bees.

By becoming a member, you’ll be an integral part of a community of like-minded individuals who are committed to protecting the environment and preserving our natural resources for future generations.

A strong membership base also strengthens our capacity to secure grant funding.  With recent success thanks to Melbourne Water (2022 Victorian Landcare Grants) and the Mornington Peninsula Shire (2022/23 Biolinks Support Grant). 

So join today for $20 (Family) or $10 (Single) and you will be helping the conservation of our important bio link that is integral to Mount Martha. Step up and Become a Sunshine Reserve Member Today

If you’re unsure regarding the status of your membership email Jenny Martin or call / txt 0425 853 815

And don’t forget to follow our socials and new website to keep up to date with all things Sunshine … care, connect, explore … you won’t regret it.

We are also grateful to our friends in other community organisations who support us. ACF Community Mornington are on the ground: advocating climate action and nature protection; encouraging connection with nature and raising community environmental awareness. For further information take a look above.

Bendigo Bank
Warlimont & Nutt
Mornington Peninsula Shire
Melbounre Water
Hop Nation