Friends of Freycinet

A Friends of Freycinet (FOF) working bee

It was another beautiful week on the east coast. There were some magic sunrises and sunsets along with some chilly starts.  Ten volunteers joined us for the week along with some of the staff from the Visitors Centre. Thank you to Peter, Ros & John, Marilyn, Ian & Joan, Rob, Ralph, Robin & Bart as well as Visitor Reception Officers Cheryl, Glen, Helen, Louise, and Melissa.
Max welcomed us on Monday and after an induction we were off to Cape Tourville to install a new seat he had constructed. The seat was flat packed to site to be pieced together in situ. That kept some of the group busy. Meanwhile the rest of us collected rubbish, cleaned out drains and laid gravel to alleviate drainage problems. Later that afternoon a small group headed around to the Mt Amos track for some tidying up enroute to the new bridge installation site.

Tuesday was a day of mayhem – to the weeds that is. Marilyn, Rob, Bart, and Peter headed off to the Seymour Conservation Area with Nick to attack some of the gorse. Being very windy it was a case of having to grub out the plants and 585 plants were removed. Meanwhile the rest of us set off with Max to tackle the weeds near the Coles Bay foreshore. By the end of the day 14,500 sweet pittosporum (Pittosporum undulatum) seedlings/saplings been removed plus mirror bush (Coprosma repens) seedlings. These are both environmental weeds in Tasmania.

After a day of weeding, it was time to stretch the legs. On Wednesday we splintered into three groups. Group one pruned the Shared Track from the Cape Tourville turnoff to Wineglass Bay car park before returning to the Visitors Centre. At the Visitors Centre they cleared drains and removed leaf litter. Group two spent the day pruning the Hazards and Isthmus tracks. This left the remainder of us to hunt for sea spurge (57 juveniles and 3 mature plants removed) and rubbish on Wineglass Bay beach.

Thursday morning was time to finish off some of the previous day’s tasks. The seat installation working group returned to Cape Tourville to try and anchor the seat to the rock while the Visitor Centre group continued with their tasks from the previous day. The rest of us returned to the Esplanade and continued with the great sweet pittosporum hunt. By lunch 185 sweet pittosporum seedlings, 12 mirror bush seedlings plus one tree, a large passionfruit vine and bluebell creeper had been removed. To celebrate Volunteer Week we were then treated to a BBQ lunch cooked by Max and Nathaniel. Parks still managed to get some work out of us that afternoon. Splitting into two groups the potholes were filled in along the dunes camping area, and on the paths around the Visitors Centre.

It was reduced numbers on Friday. The morning saw the completion of the asphalting around the Visitor Centre and work on the Cape Tourville seat.

Another great working bee and thank you to all involved.

Jenny, coordinator FOF