They keep coming back!

about  Yourka 
on 18 Jul 2013 

"Siaming" is well underway again at Yourka and I just wanted to give a 'plug' to some loyal volunteers who are back for their third year running to seek and destroy this insidious weed. Each Winter Nicky and Finney come up from Brissy for a fortnight to help us walk creeklines and remove or spray siam. This task often involves thrashing through heavy lantana thickets and 5-foot tall blady grass, scrambling up creek banks and down gullies, and clambering through tangled flood debris in channels and on flood plains.

This sort of dedication is truly impressive, not to mention a great asset to the project because the girls have increased their skills and knowledge with each return visit. So.... (hi-vis) hats off to Nicky and Finney for their siaming efforts and to all the other volunteers that are passionately committed to BHA work around the country. Thanks also to Heidi and Stacey who do the 'behind the scenes' work that makes it all possible. Heidi participated in our original siam working bee in 2009 and her first-hand knowledge of the work has been a great benefit as she has supported this project over subsequent years. Even with our new weapons: a horse, a contractor, a chopper and a helitorch, there will always be a need to get people out on foot and we are reliant on volunteer labour to achieve our goals.

These photos were taken on a great day we had surveying Basalt Creek- a tributary of Sunday Creek which flows in to the Herbert River. The walking was made easy by the absence of lantana and the effectiveness of our storm burns earlier this year. I'm yet to input the data but we all noticed a marked reduction in siam compared to previous years and it was encouraging for all of us to think that our management efforts are making a difference. Other highlights included a personal encounter with a rufous bettong and some light entertainment provided by Paul and one spotty, feral pig (sorry, I don't have any pics of that!)

So, for anyone that's stuck in an office but pining for a bit of on-reserve adventure...consider joining us for some siaming fun at Yourka- we do this twice a year in Winter and late Spring.