28 Nov SITE REHABILITATION
Scotch broom (Cytisus scoparius) is present in the Barrington region, and is considered a noxious weed in NSW. The plant out-competes most native species and excludes native grasses and shrubs. This has significant impact on native fauna who rely on natural vegetation communities for food and habitat.
Scotch broom is prolific on the Aussie Ark site and surrounding properties, and poses extreme risk to local vegetation and fauna species. Also present are the Small/ Dwarf stinging nettle (Urticas urens) and Nodding thistle (Carduus nutans) which although are not as impactful as Scotch broom, also are considered noxious weeds in the region.
The removal of these species is a major focus of the Aussie Ark team. In the 2017-18 financial year approximately 7ha (equalling 20%) of the current Aussie Ark site has been cleared of Scotch broom utilising a cut-and-paste method. This consists of cutting the broom at the base and applying poison to the stem immediately. Whilst this manual handling is labour intensive, the result is wonderful and longer lasting than most other techniques.
Additional site rehabilitation has seen the removal of pest species (fox and pigs) from Aussie Ark’s first sanctuary prior to the release of wildlife therein with the aim of removing these pest species from further Aussie Ark areas in early 2019 prior to any release of our wildlife.