Freebies & Downloads

About  Contacts  Shop  Links  Privacy


This page will be used to publicise those documents, plans, freebies and public notices that become available from time to time.

About the Molonglo Catchment

"About the Molonglo Catchment" information leafletThe Molonglo catchment extends from the Murrumbidgee River to the headwaters of Molonglo and Queanbeyan Rivers and Jerrabomberra Creek, an area of about 200,000 Ha. The catchment landscape includes areas seriously affected by the January 2003 bushfires and ongoing drought. Apart from the urban areas of Queanbeyan and inner Canberra, the catchment includes villages, rural residential areas and farmland, native and pine forests, wetlands, national parks and the foreshores of Googong Dam, which supplies some of Canberra’s and Queanbeyan’s water. All of these areas provide run-off that contributes to water supply for irrigation areas and cities downstream.

We have prepared a factsheet about the Molonglo Catchment; hardcopies are available from the MCG office, Greening Australia, Environment ACT, and Council Offices.

Download "About the Molonglo Catchment" Factsheet 738KB


Getting Involved

"Getting Involved" information leafletThere are more than 20 Landcare and Parkcare groups active within the Molonglo Catchment.  This brochure shows where the groups are working and offers some useful hints on how to reduce the size of your footprint on our environment.

Landcare / Parkcare is about community and government working together, to reduce land and water degradation to develop sustainable land use. Our environment is naturally fragile and damages easily. Sustainable land use helps keep our land and water healthy and productive, so we don’t risk

  • loss of plant and animal species and habitats

  • a decline in soil and water quality and quantity, leading to losses in agricultural production

Why should I care?

We all depend on the land for the food we eat, the water we drink, the clothes we wear, and our housing and recreation needs. We all need to work together to care for our land, to maintain our standard of living and to keep food costs down.

The brochure is available from from the MCG office, Greening Australia, Environment ACT, and Council Offices.

Download "Getting Involved" brochure 988KB


Lake Burley Griffin Willow Management Plan

Lake burley Griffin Willow Management Plan cover

In late 2004, the Molonglo Catchment Group in conjunction with Environment ACT (EACT), Canberra Urban Parks and Places (CUPP), ACT Forests and the National Capital Authority (NCA) began discussions about willow management in the Molonglo Catchment. Through negotiations with stakeholders, funding was secured to undertake a willow management plan for Lake Burley Griffin. Greening Australia ACT and SE NSW in partnership with River and Rural Management Services were contracted to put together the Lake Burley Griffin Willow Management Plan, which was published in May, 2007.

The Plan can be downloaded, or viewed online.


ACT Region Vegwatch Manual

Molonglo Catchment Group has hosted the biodiversity monitoring project with a view to improve information about our natural environment and its sustainability. This would in turn better direct and inform management of our natural environment, and to strengthen community awareness and involvement.

We have long wanted better ways to look at and observe our natural environment so that we could improve its sustainability. This was reflected in the title of the report after the investigation of the nature reserves in the Australian Capital Territory: Facing the challenges: positioning our nature reserves for the 21st century. Its recommendations included developing and implementing a nature reserve monitoring strategy.

Monitoring biodiversity in our natural environment is relevant not only to nature reserves but also to other land holdings in the region where a key element is the condition of the vegetation.

This project builds on tools and techniques for monitoring biodiversity in the ACT and Capital Region developed by Sarah Sharp and Lori Gould. Initially they produced the ACT Vegetation Monitoring Manual: a step by step guide to assessing and monitoring vegetation and habitat in grassy ecosystems, which is a comprehensive set of tools to undertake core vegetation condition monitoring.

That Monitoring Manual was developed by active involvement of community groups interested in the conservation of our natural environment now and into perpetuity.

Many people in our community groups have also been active citizen scientists by participating in the biodiversity monitoring, and providing valuable feedback to the project leaders and the authors.

This active involvement of community groups and their feedback has also led to this publication, generally known as the Vegwatch Manual.

The Vegwatch Manual provides the techniques and key tools for community groups and landholders, who will find it to be a useful tool to monitor their sites as citizen scientists.

This enables the collection of robust and consistent data that can be used not only to monitor the vegetation at individual sites over the years, but also across multiple sites in the region. It could be part of national comparisons, too.

Molonglo Catchment Group is also hosting the database so that the valuable data collected by our citizen scientists and community groups will be available for analysis to better inform decision making.

The contribution of citizen scientists in monitoring our biodiversity is highly valued. Assisting them with soundly developed tools and techniques is also highly valued.

The Vegwatch Manual will continue to strengthen their contribution towards wider appreciation and better management of our natural environment, not only in the ACT and Capital Region, but also nationally.

Download the manual ( 5,412KB)

Download the Vegwatch recording sheets ( 425KB)



Glovebox guide to frogs of the ACT region

One of the most common questions we hear in the office in Queanbeyan is "What frog is it that looks like ... ?", especially around spring.  The Molonglo Catchment Group has published a field guide to assist in the identification of selected frogs of the ACT and surrounding areas.

The guide has been produced with the support of Forde Developments and with the cooperation of Frogwatch ACT.

It is available from the Molonglo Catchment Group office in Queanbeyan as well as the Ginninderra Catchment Group, Southern ACT Catchment Group, Greening Australia and through your local Landcare Group.

Download ( 2.14MB)

The Group has also produced two PlaceStories to accompany the guide: one describing why frog calls are the best way to identify frogs and the other with the calls for each featured frog.


Glovebox guide to Waterplants of the ACT region

Glovebox guide to Waterplants of the ACT region

How do you tell a weed water plant from a native? Many water plants show luxuriant growth, produce plenty of seed and have the ability to spread easily and may look weedy. However, WEEDS like Alligator Weed, Soapwort and Dense Waterweed are ‘plants growing successfully in the wrong place’.

The guide has been produced with assistance from an ACT Government Environment Grant along with funding from the Southern ACT Catchment Group, ACT Waterwatch and ActewAGL.

It is available from the Molonglo Catchment Group office in Queanbeyan as well as the Ginninderra Catchment Group, Southern ACT Catchment Group, Greening Australia and through your local Landcare Group.

Download ( 2.36MB)



Biodiversity in the Paddock - a land manager's guide
by Josh Dorrough, Jacqui Stol and Sue McIntyre

"The grassy woodlands of the south-east are an Australian icon. The widely-spaced eucalypt trees, dry grass, stockmen, sheep, cattle, and remote homesteads are part of Australia’s national identity."

"This booklet is about the role that native pastures have in a landscape that was once grassy woodland but which now supports a range of land uses."

Download ( 3,945KB)


Managing Native GrasslandsManaging Native Grasslands: A guide to management for conservation, production and landscape protection

David Eddy, WWF

"The aim of this booklet is to provide background information, guidance and encouragement to managers of native grasslands. Considerable variety is found among the native grasslands of temperate south-eastern Australia. However, many of the ecological concepts and management requirements are common to all. This booklet is based on experience of the NSW Southern Tablelands, but is written in general terms so that the information might be useful throughout the NSW Tablelands and beyond. Much of the information should also be useful to grassy woodland managers throughout and beyond the Tablelands."

This is just one of many, many documents available for download from the WWF website!  See

Download ( 568KB)


Carbon Farming Handbook

The Carbon Farming Handbook provides a wealth of information to landholders, farmers, waste operators and other clean energy businesses wanting to participate in the Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI).

The handbook sets out how landholders and farmers can improve their land and farm sustainability while also generating carbon credits that can be sold on domestic and international markets.

The CFI, which opened for business in December 2011, encourages farmers, land owners, local government and other stakeholders to generate extra revenue by reducing agricultural and landfill waste pollution.

Several methodologies are already approved under the CFI, including flaring landfill gas, methane in piggeries, planting native tree species and reducing pollution from savanna fires.

Further methodologies are currently being developed with the CSIRO, universities, other research bodies and the Federal Government, working together to create dairy cattle food supplementation, enhanced efficiency fertilisers, manure management and soil carbon.

With the serious risks associated with climate change threatening the future of Australian agriculture and food production, farmers and landholders have an important role to play in our nation’s clean energy future by increasing the land sector's resilience to climate change and improving long term farm productivity.

The Australian Government, over the next six years, will support the land sector by investing $1.7 billion dollars of carbon price revenue to support the CFI and other programs to improve productivity, sustainability and profitability.

Download the CFI Handbook ( 2.79MB) and download Addendum V1 October 2012 ( 30KB) from the Department of Climate Change & Energy Efficiency website  or visit the website for an online version.


Australia's Native Vegetation Framework

A national framework to guide the ecologically sustainable management of Australia's native vegetation

COAG Standing Council on Environment and Water

Australia's Native Vegetation Framework was released on behalf of the COAG Standing Council on Environment and Water on Thursday 19 December 2012.

Australia’s Native Vegetation Framework will guide native vegetation management across the Australian landscape. The framework recognises that native vegetation is crucial for the health of Australia’s environment, that it supports our economy and productivity as well as our biodiversity and that it is embedded within Australia’s cultural identity.

The vision of the framework is that native vegetation is managed in an ecologically sustainable way that promotes its enduring environmental, economic, social, cultural and spiritual values.  For more information and to download the Framework, visit the National Vegetation Framework webpage.


In Safe Hands Toolkit

In Safe Hands is a Safety Management System designed for community groups in practical conservation. The content and processes have been adapted from Conservation Volunteers Australia's own system and is based on 30 years of knowledge and experience in managing volunteers in practical conservation. Recent enhancements and access to this toolkit and workshop opportunities for Landcare and other community Groups has been made possible through funding from the Australian Government's Caring for our Country initiative.

All Groups who wish to use the manual must register their details, via the registration process on the In Safe Hands website to receive the In Safe Hands Toolkit, workshop updates, content updates and support. Registrations will be open until June 30 2013.

  1. The Comprehensive Manual
    • Occupational Health and Safety policy
    • Safety Management and Guidance notes
    • Risk assessment information and format
    • Induction for volunteers
    • Set of pro forma documents to address all aspects at the work site


  2. Training

    Training workshops will be offered under the Caring for our Country project in select locations across the country from February to July 2013. Visit for details and updates.

    A training DVD will also be available in 2013.

    Additional workshops are available on request email for details.


WET eBook: Workbook for Managing Urban Wetlands in Australia

Sydney Olympic Park Authority has published the Workbook for Managing Urban Wetlands in Australia. This eBook is a distillation and distribution of the contents, partnership, collaboration and research comprising the Wetland Education and Training (WET) program at Sydney Olympic Park. It is both a culmination and celebration of the WET Program, which has been developed and delivered by the Authority for over 10 years.

The eBook has 5 sections and 28 chapters, which have been contributed by eminent wetland scientists, practising ecologists and dedicated professionals. The chapters contain useful hands-on information about managing both freshwater and estuarine wetlands in urban Australia.

Enjoy reading this eBook and making a difference in the wetland that you care for. Also, encourage your peers to access this eBook and make use of it.


Catchment Detox on ABC Science websiteCatchment Detox

Play Catchment Detox at to see if you can repair a damaged river catchment and create a sustainable and thriving economy.

It's an online game where you're in charge of the whole catchment. You get to decide what activities you undertake - whether to plant crops, log forests, build factories or set up national parks. The aim is to fix environmental problems and provide food and wealth for the population.


QuestaBird on Google Play

QuestaBird is an outdoor adventure game where players compete by photographing birds in the wild. Join quests, earn gold, buy supplies, gain levels, build your collection - and help document and protect Australia's biodiversity! Try it. It's free.

New! Head-to-Head Challenges and Indoor Gaming

The latest release of QuestaBird on iOS and Android includes some exciting new features, including:

Head-to-Head Challenges: Challenge your friends or other players in the game to head-to-head competitions. It's you vs. them to see who can spot the most species and earn the most gold in a specific time period. To play, select "Head-to-Head Challenges" from the menu or the dashboard.

QuestaLab: Now you can earn gold when you're not busy adventuring outdoors. Just select the binoculars on the dashboard to test your skill at identifying species. It's a great way to learn how to recognize species in the wild -- while earning more gold at the same time.

Real Data
See which birds are more easily spotted in your location at the current time of year. Submit a new sighting to earn gold. The amount you earn is based on the rarity and distribution of the birds in your location. Use your gold to buy equipment, increase your quests, win rewards and gain new levels.

Help Protect Australia's Biodiversity
Works across all of Australia, with location, date and time recorded with each new sighting. Your sightings, meanwhile, are not only stored locally, but they will become part of Australia's national database to help record and protect biodiversity. (View screens)

Launch Your Own Quest!
Are there specific birds - or other wildlife - that you'd like the players of our game to find? Let us add a new quest for you. Just contact Questabird and they'll set something up.

QuestaBird is now available on Google Play and the App Store for a free download.

Give it go. You can report any feature requests, bugs, ideas or ask any questions at, using the "Discussion Forum" button on the right-hand side.


The Weed Game

The Weed Game is now available for beta-play. The game helps teach players to identify the various plants and weeds in their locality.

The Weed Game currently covers the ACT/NSW region, but will be expanding into new regions soon.

The game pits players against a clock as they try to quickly identify the plants — and weeds — of the ACT/NSW region. There are four “life-line” options: Two 50/50s (which remove half of the possible answers), and two which stop the clock. Play it now!

Scoring is calculated based on:

a) How quickly you get a correct answer. Faster equals more points.

b) Whether you can identify the weeds.

The initial version is single player only, with a universal leader board, but a two-player version will be added soon, allowing players to compete against each other.

The game also allows players to upload photos of their local weeds. These photos are then vetted by scientists and can appear in the game.

The Weed Game — click on the image to play!


National TrustCultural Heritage  in the Molonglo Catchment

National Trust (ACT) has prepared a number of brochures for self-guided heritage walks and tours of different areas in Canberra.  The brochures available free of charge in hard copy from the National Trust (ACT) Office, from the Old Parliament House Shop or  downloaded from the ACT National Trust website.

Tours in the Molonglo catchment include:

See the ACT National Trust website for the full list of self-guided tours.


Botanical Resource Centre – Plant Identification at Your Fingertips

Not only does the Australian National Botanic Gardens display the world’s largest collection of Australian native plants, it is also the home of many education and research facilities such as the Botanical Resource Centre.

Open seven days a week, the Botanical Resource Centre is a free facility available for students, researchers, plant surveyors, native plant enthusiasts, amateur botanists or anyone interested in learning how to identify and discover more about Australian plants. The Botanical Resource Centre provides access to a range of electronic plant identifying tools, microscopes and reference books to assist visitors to identify Australian plants.

Located within the Botanical Resource Centre is a public reference herbarium of native and naturalised plants of the south-east region of NSW. This library of pressed plant specimens can be used to help identify plants of the region.

Visitors are encouraged to explore the large range of dried specimens in the public reference herbarium, or to bring along their own specimens to identify and learn about at their own pace. Please be aware of potential introduction of pests and disease into the Gardens and only bring healthy samples, sealed in a plastic bag, into the Botanical Resource Centre.

Need help getting started?

Every Thursday afternoon and Sunday morning, trained facilitators are available to help new users get started. Appointments can also be made outside these times for a one on one training session. Please call the Visitor Information Centre for details.

Find out more

For further information on the Botanical Resource Centre, contact the Visitor Information Centre on (02) 6250 9540 or email visitorcentre at or visit

The Botanical Resource Centre is open daily from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm and is accessed through the Friends' Lounge – just pass the café to the left.


Self-guided walks in the Molonglo Catchment by ACT Parks, Conservation and Lands

PCL LogoAs part of the of the  Get Out There campaign, ACT Parks, Conservation and Lands publish leaflets for self-guided walks in Canberra's parks, which allow you to explore Canberra’s parks and natural heritage at your own leisure. Each month one of the great self-guided walks in the region is profiled as the Feature Walk to explore and is available from the ACT Territory and Municipal Services website

Guides for other walks are available for download from the ACT Territory and Municipal Services website

Maps of reserves in Canberra Nature Park are available from the TAMS website at


Woodland Web

Information on native grasslands and woodlands of southern Australia can be accessed at the new Woodland Web website designed by researchers at Charles Sturt University. Visit the Woodland Web at


Atlas of Living Australia

Attals of Living AustraliaAustralians will be able to help researchers protect the amazing array of plants and animals in their local area, thanks to a new online information portal.

The Atlas of Living Australia has been developed to build a better picture of the Australian biosphere. It already holds over 23 million records on the distribution of Australia’s fauna and flora, in addition to maps, images and literature. Members of the public can help to build the database by contributing local photographs and information.

The website at,, focuses on Australia’s amazing plants, animals, fungi and microorganisms. It provides access to an array of information, including species pages, names lists, ID keys, over 23 million records, photos, mapping tools and more. But more information about all Australian species is needed to help researchers and others protect and manage Australia’s biodiversity. You can help by contributing photos and information to the site.

The Atlas project is a national scientific collaboration between the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), the Australian natural history collections community and the Australian Government.


Canberra Nature Map

Canberra Nature Map is a repository for park care groups, volunteers and members of the public to report sightings of rare and endangered plant species and any of the many treasures that Canberra's nature parks are home to. Canberra Nature Map was founded by Aaron Clausen, a mountain biker who accidentally rode through a patch of critically endangered Canberra spider orchids and became entranced by their beauty and fragility.

The Canberra Nature Map project allows you to report your rare plant and animal sightings as well as any of the many treasures in and around the ACT.

The Canberra Nature Map App allows you to quickly upload your own sightings and browse species guides when you're out and about exploring - even without any mobile reception.  Visit the Canberra Nature Map website, GooglePlay or Apple iStore to download.


Climate tools for farmers

Two, new tools have been developed as part of a Bureau of Meteorology project sponsored by the Managing Climate Variability program. One tool shows a range of rainfall scenarios for most rainfall recording stations in Australia and the other is an online product to find out what factors are influencing the climate in their region by clicking on an interactive map. For further details visit


Serrated Tussock National Best Practice Management Manual

Serrated Tussock Best Practice Management ManualThe NSW Department of Primary Industries, together with the Victorian Department of Primary Industries and the Australian Government's Defeating the Weed Menace, have recently published a best practice manual, resources CD and 6-page guide for serrated tussock.

This is a great resource now available to those who wish to know more about serrated tussock and keep up to date with research.

The guide can be downloaded from



Blackberry Control Manual

The manual will be a valuable guide for the management and control of the weedy blackberry species in Australia.

Designed to help provide effective management solutions for blackberry within the context of integrated weed management, this manual brings together detailed information about the plant itself, as well as best practice information about existing control and management options.

By reading this document you will discover that there is no one best method for control; instead, there is a range of factors that need to be considered and weighed up for each particular situation.

The manual can be downloaded from The document has been divided into seven files so that it can be downloaded in smaller sections to make it more accessible to people with slow internet connections.


Blackberry Control Brochure

Management and control options for blackberry (Rubus spp) in Australia

This brochure has been developed as a summary of the National Blackberry Control Manual (NSW Department of Primary Industries Weed Management Unit, 2009) and uses information contained in this manual. Copies can be downloaded or ordered from the Weeds Australia website.

The brochure deals with identification of Rubus fruticosus agg. and includes a quick reference guide to distinguish between the different groups of blackberry. It sets out the steps to take in developing a blackberry management plan, and covers blackberry control practices and presents a case-study in community-led action fro long term blackberry control.


National Willows Management Guide

Willows (Salix spp.) are among the most serious riparian and wetland weeds in temperate Australia. There are more than 30 different types of willows now growing and spreading naturally and these willows can spread in different ways and cause different levels of impacts depending on where they establish.

For many years, willows have often been a controversial weed to manage. The National Willows Taskforce recognises the need to develop a balanced approach to management that considers which willows need to be targeted, where and when in order to reduce their negative impacts and potential to spread into other important environments.

This National Willows Management Guide brings together detailed information about willows and their management to help you determine why, what, where, when and how willows should be managed. By reading this document, you will discover that there is no one best method, but rather a range of factors that need to be considered and weighed up for each particular situation.

The guide can be downloaded from The document has been divided into six files so that it can be downloaded in smaller sections to make it more accessible to people with slow internet connections.

National Willows Management DVD

The DVD is a visual and pictorial version of the National Willows Management Guide. The DVD focuses on developing effective control programs using examples of willow management from across Australia. It also touches on willow impacts and the importance of planning willow management.

The DVD can be ordered from the National Willows Coordinator - (


AILA webSustainable Canberra Garden

The Sustainable Canberra Garden website has been prepared by Edwina Richardson AILA, and the Australian Institute of Landscape Architects (AILA) with assistance from an ACT Government Environment Grant.

The website consists of a series of fact sheets and case studies illustrating how Canberra residents can improve the sustainability of their gardens.

Topics addressed are about designing a sustainable garden that:

  • Reflects the Canberra Region
  • Uses Water Wisely
  •  Incorporates Hardy Plants
  • Creates Habitat
  • Uses Landscape Materials Wisely
  • Plans for Climate Change
  • Employs Sustainable Garden Maintenance

and presents 5 case studies that demonstrate these principles.



10 Things We Can All Do to Help Nature Adapt to a New Climate

Although the VicNature 2050 website focuses on Victoria, the suggestions are equally applicable to the Molonglo catchment. The following is an excerpt from the website's introduction:

From the mountains to the plains, the mallee to the sea, nature in Victoria is wonderful. Many, many people are doing fantastic work to protect and restore Victoria’s natural diversity: in community groups, agencies and NGOs, on public land and their own property.

This work is about to get a bit more complicated. Climate change is getting worse. As the climate changes, our favourite natural areas and the species they contain will also change. We now have to work out – not only, “how do we protect our current environment” – but also, “what can we do to help natural areas adapt to a new climate?”

In 2015, a group of people came together at a symposium, called Managing Victoria’s Biodiversity under Climate Change, in Melbourne. More than 200 scientists and audience members with years of practical experience discussed the state-of-play and options for the future.

This web site is one outcome from that conference. It presents 10 things we all can do to help nature adapt to a new climate. All ten actions involve people, nature, science, politics and every single one of us, personally. Some of the actions are new, some are as old as the hills. Many will be discussed, experimented with, and refined as we learn more in the future.


Birds of Canberra Gardens

Nearly 230 bird species have been recorded in and around Canberra suburban gardens over the past 27 years in the Canberra Ornithologists Group’s Garden Bird Survey.

The life and times of most of these birds are described in this book, illustrated with brilliant colour photographs and abundance graphs.

Birds of Canberra Gardens describes the abundance and distribution of birds, and discusses how they are likely to be found at different times throughout the year, and in different places. The book also provides some ideas on how your garden may be made more attractive to native birds.

Birds of Canberra Gardens is an excellent introduction to the birds of Canberra. It demonstrates graphically the delights of nature that are available to us here in Canberra, as long as we open our eyes and our ears.

The book is for sale from COG (through Martin Butterfield martinflab at for $25.00.


Greening Australia Publications

Bringing Birds Back 2nd Edition Bringing Birds Back

A glovebox guide for bird identification and habitat restoration in the ACT and SE NSW based on results from bird surveys. A PDF version of Bringing Birds Back  is available for download (1,605KB).


Guidelines for collecting seed for revegetation in ACT and surrounding region

Do You Know The Conservation Value of Your Revegetation Site?

To determine where you need to source seed it is important to know the conservation value of the site identified for revegetation works.

The ACT has been classified into four categories based on the conservation values:

  1. High Conservation Value (HCV)
  2. Moderate Conservation Value (MCV)
  3. Low Conservation Value (LCV)
  4. Minimal Conservation Value (MinCV)

This document defines each conservation value and recommends where seed should be collected.

A PDF version of Guidelines for collecting seed...  is available for download (1.38MB).


Protecting your patch: What is the value of a fence?


Patches of remnant native vegetation on farms are valued by landholders for many reasons. They form an important part of the landscape, help to manage salinity and erosion, provide shade and shelter for stock, contribute timber and firewood as well as provide habitat for wildlife and native plants.

Over the last decade many landholders have taken part in incentive programs to fence their remnant patches. The goal of these programs was to control stock grazing to encourage the conservation and regeneration of native plants.

A PDF version of Protecting your Patch  is available for download (925KB).


Sex in SPAs


Genetic issues in Seed Production Areas (SPAs)

Seed Production Areas (SPAs) are one solution to the increasing demand for native seed for revegetation.

Although genetic issues are critical to the success of SPAs, they are often perceived as complex and difficult to understand. The goal of this brochure is to help you understand the main genetic issues associated with SPAs.

A PDF version of Sex in SPAs  is available for download (314KB).


Whole of Paddock Rehabilitation


A new approach to regreening the farm

Greening Australia’s Whole of Paddock Rehabilitation (WOPR) offers an innovative approach to combating growing land degradation problems, restoring paddock health and providing multiple farm production benefits. Incentives for large-scale native plant revegetation, coupled with a fixed-term stewardship payment, will assist land managers to better address climate change, biodiversity losses, paddock tree decline, salinity and other land degradation issues at the paddock level. WOPR integrates conservation and production in a practical, cost-effective and user-friendly program.

A PDF version of Whole of Paddock Rehabilitation  is available for download (601KB).


Native Revegetation Guides
To support the successful implementation of significant revegetation and restoration programs being delivered around the country in the next few years, Greening Australia has developed a series of ‘how-to’ guides.

These documents provide guidance for project managers keen to refresh their knowledge of restoration practices, or for those new to the sector, advice on what risks to consider.

Greening Australia has developed these guides on a broad ‘biome’ basis, and some of the material applies across different areas, so you may want to have a look at more than one.

Visit to download the guides.



Aboriginal Scarred Trees in NSW : a field manual

NSW Department of Environment and Climate Change

Aboriginal Scarred Trees coverThousands of surviving trees in NSW bear scars resulting from removal of bark or wood by Aboriginal people in the past for the manufacture of canoes, shields and other artefacts. These scarred trees are one of the most common yet least understood items of Aboriginal heritage.

'Aboriginal Scarred Trees in New South Wales' has been written to help those who wish to record Aboriginal scarred trees or who wish to distinguish between Aboriginal scarring and scars that are the result of natural processes such as tree disease and lightning strikes.

Hardcopies of the publication can are also available for $10.95; visit

Download from the DECC website ( 1.6MB)


Stories from Ngunnawal Country

Stories from Ngunnawal Country is a video cultural tour that takes the viewer to three significant locations in Canberra where stories of the Ngunnawal peoples are told on film.

In putting together the Stories from Ngunnawal Country project, the team at DEEWR wanted to create a new resource that would foster cultural awareness and build a deeper understanding of Canberra’s history from the perspective of the Ngunnawal peoples, who are the traditional owners of the land on which the DEEWR national office stands in Canberra.

The team collaborated with Adrian Brown, the ACT Parks and Conservation Service Caring for Ngunnawal Country Ranger in Canberra. Adrian agreed to be the team’s cultural advisor and storyteller for the videos. A Ngunnawal man, Adrian traces his own family history in the region back to the early 1800s.

Adrian recommended filming at three locations in inner Canberra - Mount Ainslie, Black Mountain and the Jerrabomberra Wetlands.

Visit to view and/or download the videos.


Ngunnawal Plant Use
a traditional Aboriginal plant use guide for the ACT region

A new field guide, Ngunnawal Plant Use, was released in October and is available for purchase.

The ACT’s Traditional Owners, the Ngunnawal people used and continue to use the plant resources of this region for food, medicine, tools and weapons, fire, ceremonial purposes, water, fibre, dye and paint. Ngunnawal Plant Use provides information on the native plants of the ACT region and their many Ngunnawal uses.

The Field Guide is a robust, full-colour, A5, spiral-bound, 96-page field guide, and includes:

  • An Introduction to Ngunnawal history and natural resource use;
  • A guide to using the book;
  • Descriptions and photos of 69 plant species, including their Ngunnawal use, distribution, and method of propagation; and
  • Further reading and references.

The book can be purchased for $22 (GST inclusive) including postage and handling:

  • Online at
  • Namadgi National Park and Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve Visitors Centre shops, ACT
  • The Botanical Bookshop, Australian National Botanic Gardens, Canberra
  • The Curatoreum, Village Centre, National Arboretum, Canberra
  • Through Canberra Connect Call Centres – call 13 22 81.

Funding for the book was provided by the Australian Government.

The book was developed by the Environment and Planning Directorate (EPD) in partnership with the ACT Parks and Conservation Service, the United Ngunnawal Elders Council, the Ngunnawal community, Greening Australia, EPD Aboriginal trainees employed under the Caring for the Cotter catchment project and Murrumbung Yurung Murra staff (a network of ACT Govermnet Aboriginal staff working in NRM, Herigage and Parks.

For further information about the book - call 13 22 81 or email


Property Management Plan

A framework for environmental management

A Property Environmental Management Plan (‘the Plan’) will provide a framework for the environmental management of your property. It can help you work towards best practice and sustainable land management practices. The Plan will assist you to document management practices employed on your land. It can be used to identify and develop practices to maximise conservation of the native flora and fauna, and their environmental benefits. It can also help to minimise the impact of the activities conducted on the property, on the environment, the local community and surrounding developments.

It is hoped that the benefits gained from implementing actions outlined in your Plan will include:

  • a greater understanding of your local environment;
  • clear identification of the nature and state of natural resources on your property;
  • identification of problem areas for future management activities;
  • enhancement of the use and benefits you get from your property; and
  • enhancement of the overall condition of your property for future generations.

The format of this template has been developed to allow property or business owners to devise a Plan without in-depth knowledge of natural resource management or environmental protection and enhancement. Resources and information provided in this document and in the references at the end of this guide, are available to assist in the completion of the initial Plan. Officers from your local council are also valuable contacts for information about your local area.

This publication is based on material prepared for the Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) by Hornsby Shire Council. Funding was provided by the NSW Government through its Stormwater Trust under the Urban Stormwater Education Program.

Download ( 939KB)


Horse properties on the rural urban fringe

Best practice environmental guide for keeping horses

Properties where horses are kept can have a serious impact on the surrounding environment. This impact is mainly through water pollution. Water runs off paddocks and yards, carrying valuable soil and plant nutrients, as well as weed seeds and possibly chemicals to nearby waterways and other sensitive areas. This can be remedied with proper land management.

"Horse properties on the rural urban fringe" is a best practice environmental guide for keeping horses. This guide provides practical advice on how to protect and improve the natural environment on and around horse properties and gives practical advice on caring for horses. It provides insight into land and water management issues commonly encountered on properties where horses are kept and techniques for minimising the environmental impact of these properties.

This publication is based on material prepared for the Department of Environment and Conservation (NSW) by Kimmerikong Pty Ltd. Funding was provided by the NSW Government through its Stormwater Trust under the Urban Stormwater Education Program.

Download ( 809KB)


Books from NSW Agriculture

Although not free, books from the NSW Department of Primary Industry offer invaluable information for prospective  small area farmers at a reasonably low price.

Visit click on the images below.

Rural Life - is it for you?


Farming in a Small Way


Managing for and recovering from drought - factsheets

The NSW Department of Primary Industries have released an updated series of fact-sheets to guide planning for drought and drought recovery. They are equally applicable in considering how to manage for the very likely climate change:

  • Weed strategies following drought, fire and flood (Primefact 372)
  • Grazing management following drought (Primefact 364)
  • Tree management after drought (Primefact 370)
  • Soil management following drought (Primefact 367)
  • Winter cropping following drought (Primefact 366)
  • Restocking after a drought (Primefact 395)
  • Weeds - a threat to drought recovery (Primefact 365)
  • Reassessing water requirements after a drought (Primefact 394)
  • Animal welfare in drought (Primefact 327)
  • Pasture sustainability and management in drought (Primefact 325)
  • Risk management for stock owners in times of fire and flood (Primefact 380)
  • Confinement feeding of cattle in drought: protecting the environment (Primefact 554)
  • Assessing current pasture and vegetation conditions (Primefact 376)
  • Planning for drought (Primefact 371)

See the latest publications on


NSW WeedWise App

The NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) has developed and recently released the NSW WeedWise App. The App profiles more than 300 noxious and environmental weeds in NSW. It combines weed profiles and control information as well as the legal requirements under the Noxious Weeds Act 1993 in one easy-to-access location.

Each weed profile contains a physical description of the weed, an image gallery and detailed information about its impacts, where it occurs, how it spreads and its preferred habitat. The latest control options are described for each weed and the herbicides registered for its control are listed, including application rates and techniques.

The App also allows users to directly report sightings of high priority weeds via email or SMS.

The NSW WeedWise smartphone app is free and available for iPhone and iPad on the App Store and for Android smartphones on Google play. The app will also scale up for use on most Android tablets. You can download the App at the iTunes Store or Google Play.

In addition to the NSW WeedWise App, the DPI has revamped its online weed information with a new component called 'NSW WeedWise'.

These web pages provide weed profiles, legal requirements and control options including registered herbicide options for over 300 noxious and environmental weeds in NSW. These pages combine profile information previously published in Primefacts and Weed Alerts; legal requirements under the Noxious Weeds Act 1993 previously contained in the Noxious Weeds Database, and herbicide options published in the Noxious & Environmental Weed Control Handbook.


Understanding Our Native Grasslands

The merit of NSW’s sometimes undervalued native grasslands is getting deserved recognition with the publication of a booklet, Understanding Our Native Grasslands by the Natural Resources Advisory Council (NRAC).

The booklet aims to raise community awareness about the critical role native grasslands play in maintaining healthy soils and water, creating habitat for animals and plants, fodder for stock and as being culturally important for indigenous people.

In western NSW, native grassland once covered more than 3.7 million hectares, almost half of which has been removed or replaced since European settlement. Few of the lowland native grasslands of central western NSW remain in their original condition and they rank among Australia’s most threatened ecosystems.

Native grasslands have been shown to:

  • be naturally drought tolerant and frost resistant and can help to maintain fodder all year round;

  • provide low input production for land managers;

  • respond quickly to rainfall; and

  • produce wool fleece that is softer, better in colour and of finer quality.

The booklet is available from the NRAC Secretariat (02 9895 7334) or can be downloaded  from the Landcare Australia website ( 1.84MB)


Revegetation Pamphlets
Following the success of the Jerrabomberra Creek revegetation pamphlet, pamphlets for Burra Creek, Molonglo River and Queanbeyan River have been produced as part of a National Landcare Program project conducted by the Molonglo Catchment Group - see Molonglo Catchment Strategy Roll-out 2006-2008 (MCS Phase 3).

Jerrabomberra Creek Revegetation Pamphlet

Jerrabomberra Creek Revegetation pamphlet

This pamphlet is a source of information for all individuals and groups interested in Jerrabomberra Creek, including those who monitor water quality, Royalla Landcare, Queanbeyan Landcare and Narrabundah Landcare groups. The pamphlet is an initiative of the Southern ACT Catchment Group who secured an Envirofund grant for its production and is also supported by the Molonglo Catchment Group.  Hardcopies are available from Council Offices, Greening Australia and Environment ACT.

     (  983 KB)



Burra Creek Revegetation Pamphlet

Burra Creek Revegetation Pamphlet

This pamphlet is a source of information for all individuals and groups interested in Burra Creek, including those who monitor water quality, Royalla Landcare, and Burra Landcare groups. The pamphlet is an initiative of the Molonglo Catchment Group and developed as part of a National Landcare program project.  Hardcopies are available from Council Offices, Greening Australia and Environment ACT.

     (  599KB)


Molonglo River Revegetation Pamphlet

Molonglo River Revegetation Pamphlet

This pamphlet is a source of information for all individuals and groups interested in the Molonglo River, including those who monitor water quality, Queanbeyan Landcare, Carwoola Landcare, Hoskinstown Landcare and Captains Flat Landcare groups. The pamphlet is an initiative of the Molonglo Catchment Group and developed as part of a National Landcare program project.  Hardcopies are available from Council Offices, Greening Australia and Environment ACT.

     (  1,314 KB)


Queanbeyan River Revegetation Pamphlet

Queanbeyan River Revegetation Pamphlet

This pamphlet is a source of information for all individuals and groups interested in the Queanbeyan River, including those who monitor water quality, Queanbeyan Landcare, Burra Landcare and Jerangle / Upper Queanbeyan Landcare groups. The pamphlet is an initiative of the Molonglo Catchment Group and developed as part of a National Landcare program project.  Hardcopies are available from Council Offices, Greening Australia and Environment ACT.

     (  1,036 KB)


Books from the Institute for Rural Futures

Weed Detection and Control on Small Farms: A Guide for Owners

Sindel, B. & Coleman, M. 2010. Weed Detection and Control on Small Farms: A Guide for Owners.

This booklet is the result of a project led by Professor Sindel and funded by Land & Water Australia in which the ‘best practice’ weed detection and control practices used by Australian landholders and weeds officers were identified.

During this research, the project team confirmed the findings of other research which suggests that owners of small ‘hobby’ farms find it more difficult than professional farmers to control weeds on their land, often due to lack of time and labour, insufficient knowledge and lack of appropriate equipment.

Nonetheless, research also suggests that small farm owners are motivated to improve their ability to control weeds. The booklet is designed to draw on this enthusiasm by suggesting easy to implement methods for controlling weeds on small farms.

It discusses the importance of controlling weeds, the principles of weed detection (where and when to look for weeds on the farm, how to identify an unknown plant and what to do when a new weed outbreak is found), weed control responsibilities and methods appropriate to small farm owners, guidelines for responsible herbicide use and accreditation, and available weed control assistance.

The booklet is available for free download ( 1.9MB) from the Institute for Rural Futures website:

Weed Detection and Control on Small Farms: A Guide for Owners


Soap, shampoo and your soil

(Adapted from UrbanNRM)  Greywater use has become so widespread in many parts of Australia that it is now more a case of who isn’t using greywater to keep their gardens alive. This is great news for water conservation efforts. Greywater use is not an exact science, though, and successful greywater irrigation depends on a number of factors including soil type, plant type and ultimately which chemicals and elements make up your greywater. 

Typically, laundry and bathroom water are the most common and safest waste waters to use depending on which products you are using. The Alternative Technology Association (ATA), in conjunction with Associate Professor Barry Meehan and RMIT University’s Environmental Science Department, has completed a study looking at the impact of bathroom products on soils ( 374KB).

"The study has shown that when bathroom greywater is to be used as a source of irrigation water, then the selection of appropriate products is critical. It was found that the effects of greywater on soil will vary depending on the type of soil present."

A previous study by Lanfax Laboratories had looked at laundry greywater. Lanfax has recently updated its study of laundry powder detergents ( 146KB) and is currently updating its study of liquid detergents.  "Be 'environmentally responsible', manage your greywater for the least environmental impact. There are NO environmentally friendly detergents, so 'choose to use' those with least known hazards." 

Understanding the effects of greywater on soil and subsoil is important for the management of wastewater treatment systems in rural areas.   "No 'safe in septic' standards or acceptable guidelines exist, and no laundry product can be 'environmentally friendly'."


UMCCC Publications

The Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment Coordinating Committee has produced a number of publications tailored for small property owners and managers in the Upper Murrumbidgee catchment.

Look after your natural assets

"Look after your natural asset"s booklet cover

The first edition of Look after your natural assets was produced by members of the Geary’s Gap Wamboin Landcare Group with assistance from Australian taxpayers through the Natural Heritage Trust.

The 3rd edition (2010) was initiated by the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment Coordinating Committee and supported by many local natural resource management organisations and an ACT Environment Grant.

From the foreword by UMCCC Chair, Peter Duffy:

Everybody living out of town wants to see the country stay alive and healthy. Keeping it that way is a big job, particularly as a lot of country changes from broadacre farming to smaller rural residential blocks. Lots of organisations help: Landcare and other voluntary social groups, local councils, State and Commonwealth departments. But in the end it comes down to what each and every one of us does and doesn’t do. Being out of town brings responsibilities as well as the joys of space, quiet, animals, big gardens and trees. People with a history of farming generally know about this stuff and know how to work with their neighbours on common problems. People who are new to the bush often need a hand to work out some of the ins and outs of being part of a rural or semi-rural community. That’s what this booklet is about: some hard information, some hints, some ideas, some questions for you. We hope it helps you make the most of your block and work in harmony with your natural and social environments.

The booklet is available through the UMCCC's Rural Display Units in various locations around the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment, and at Cooma-Monaro Shire, Queanbeyan City and Palerang Council Offices, and the Murrumbidgee CMA Queanbeyan Office.

Download Look after your natural assets - 3rd Edition ( 3.87MB)


Choosing and Managing Land

Choosing and managing land is a fact sheet for people considering buying a small rural property in the upper Murrumbidgee catchment. Hardcopies are available from Council Offices, Greening Australia and Environment ACT.

The fact sheet is available through the UMCCC's Rural Display Units in various locations around the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment, and at Cooma-Monaro Shire, Queanbeyan City and Palerang Council Offices, and the Murrumbidgee CMA Queanbeyan Office.

Download ( 282KB)


Unearthing Wetlands of the Upper Murrumbidgee... Fact Sheet for Rural Landholders

Unearthing Wetlands of the Upper Murrumbidgee... Fact Sheet for Rural LandholdersWetlands are now recognised as important assets in the rural landscape. Their multiple values and functions provide many environmental services for rural landholders and for the catchment.

In the past wetlands were seen as problem areas - land lost to production because of waterlogged soils or that created difficulties with access. It was a common practice to fill or drain boggy land without understanding its importance and value.

This fact sheet is designed to assist rural landholders to identify and manage wetlands in the upper Murrumbidgee catchment. 

The fact sheet is available through the UMCCC's Rural Display Units in various locations around the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment, and at Cooma-Monaro Shire, Queanbeyan City and Palerang Council Offices, and the Murrumbidgee CMA Queanbeyan Office.

Download ( 420KB)


Living with Drought for Small Rural Blocks in the Upper Murrumbidgee ... Fact Sheet for Rural Landholders

Living with Drought The impact of drought on small acreage and lifestyle farmers varies in its effects and intensity. Although non-production farms may not experience the financial hardships of traditional farmers, the struggle to safeguard pastures, protect water resources and care for stock is universal.

This booklet is designed for owners of small rural blocks. It provides a starting point to address issues you may have to deal with in times of drought. Advice in this booklet is centred on good farm planning and sustainable management of your land to help your property withstand harsh seasons and allow it to flourish in good seasons.

This publication is divided into three subsections: Preparing for Drought, Surviving Drought and Recovering from Drought.

It covers topics such as:

  • Planning ahead
  • Looking after your trees and pastures
  • Feeding stock
  • Looking after your water quality
  • Useful web sites, publications and contacts.

The fact sheet is available through the UMCCC's Rural Display Units in various locations around the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment, and at Cooma-Monaro Shire, Queanbeyan City and Palerang Council Offices, and the Murrumbidgee CMA Queanbeyan Office.

Download the fact sheet ( 2.28MB)


Groundwater in the Upper Murrumbidgee - understanding your bore... Fact Sheet for Rural Landholders

Groundwater fact sheet cover page

Groundwater is water found beneath the surface of the earth and it is an important part of the water cycle.  When it rains on land, some water evaporates, some flows into creeks and rivers and some soaks into the soil and is used by vegetation. Excess water may soak into the soil beyond the plant root zone until it reaches the saturation zone. At this point all spaces in the soil and rock are full of water.

This fact sheet discusses groundwater in a simplified way, emphasising the relationship between groundwater and surface water.  Topics discussed include:

  • Groundwater & surface water

  • Groundwater availability

  • Groundwater recharge

  • Can I have a bore and how do I get one?

  • How do I know the groundwater is OK to use?

  • Where do I get my water tested?

and contains a list of useful contacts and suggestions for further reading.

The fact sheet is available through the UMCCC's Rural Display Units in various locations around the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment, and at Cooma-Monaro Shire, Queanbeyan City and Palerang Council Offices, and the Murrumbidgee CMA Queanbeyan Office.

Download ( 464KB)


Willow Management - A strategy for the Upper Murrumbidgee

From the foreword to the Strategy by Drew English:

There is a strong history of willow management in the upper Murrumbidgee — many of the accepted strategies and techniques began or have been tested in the region. An early ‘Willow Warrior’ in this region, Kurt Cremer, spent much of his later life observing, mapping and developing some of the management techniques that are included in this strategy.

The work that Kurt began personally has been carried on by the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment Coordinating Committee — documented and extended by the development of a formal position, successful application for funding, and the appointment of two project officers during the life of the project to date.  Tom Nilsen began the role and Douglas Kerruish has completed the writing of this strategy.

Review by Molonglo Waterwatch Coordinator, Dr Stephen Skinner:

Yet another willows document ... but this one is different. The scene is set and a little historical background is added. Then there is a natural history of willows in eastern Australia and the behaviours that make them weedy. The byzantine nature of willow identification is presented well. The resourceful anatomy and physiology of the willow is summarised clearly, and the disruption this causes in Upper Murrumbidgee riparian areas is well documented. In all, Chapter 3 is a great read both as a presentation of Salix species as what they are, and as a clear exposé of what they can and will do in our waterways when we let them. There is an outline of the mapping and the strategy to control the spread. The last chapter presents the status of willows in each of the 9 catchments that make up the Upper Murrumbidgee. The reader is engaged with both local ‘what needs to be done’ and ‘who else has similar problems’ in a readable way with plenty of meaty information. The reference list is comprehensive. Read this willows document! You will come away well informed and with realistic expectations about willows management. Well done Doug and all those who contributed!

A limited number of hardcopies of the strategy are available.  The Strategy is available on CD from the Upper Murrumbidgee Catchment Coordinating Committee.

The Strategy is available for download in 5 parts:

Part 1 ( 5.06MB):
Executive Summary
Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Developing the Strategy

Part 2 ( 5.59MB):
Chapter 3: Willows and their Management

Part 3 ( 4.41MB):
Chapter 4: Willow Mapping
Chapter 5: The Strategy

Part 4 ( 5.47MB):
Chapter 6: Management Recommendations and Priorities

Part 5 ( 2.62MB):
References and Further Reading


Peri-Urban Weed Management Study

Exploring Agents of Change to Peri-urban Weed Management

Darryl Low Choy and Jo Harding

Rural lifestyle landowners occupy peri-urban areas—the non-urban landscape close to urban or regional centres. These landowners do not derive their living directly from their properties as they have chosen these locations essentially for ‘lifestyle’ purposes. Because the rural lifestyle is increasingly popular, the landowners are key stakeholders in future landscape management.

The management of invasive species is of increasing concern to land managers. National and state listed weeds are a particular threat to agricultural production and biodiversity. This study has confirmed that rural lifestyle landowners are often limited their ability to respond to weed issues on their properties. These limitations are due to a lack of awareness, lack of knowledge of the problem, different value sets from those of traditional rural landowners, and a lack of time and resources. It has, however, been noted that this new wave of rural lifestyle landowners tend to be typically well-educated, have high incomes, and value natural landscapes.

To ensure that future weed management strategies are successful in this new and changing rural landscape, management agencies will need to fully engage this critical group of emergent landscape managers.

Download ( 1.47MB)


Rural Landholder’s Guide To Environmental Law in NSW - 4th Edition

Rural Landholder's Guide to Environmental Law in NSWThe Environmental Defenders Office has produced a fourth edition of the “Rural Landholder’s Guide to Environmental Law”. This publication is designed to help landholders understand their legal rights and manage their land in accordance with environmental and natural resource management law.

The topics covered in this booklet include:

  • vegetation management
  • protected plants and animals
  • bushfire management
  • water management
  • development consent
  • pollution
  • agricultural chemicals
  • crops and stock
  • mining and quarrying
  • heritage protection
  • voluntary conservation

The  127 page guide (Rural Landholder's Guide to Environmental Law in NSW 1.89MB) is available at: or by contacting the Environmental Defenders Office on 1800 626 239.


New publications from EDO NSW

The Environmental Defender’s Office (NSW) Ltd is a not-for-profit community legal centre specialising in public interest environmental law. The EDO  helps individuals and community groups who are working to protect the natural and built environment. The EDO is part of a national network of EDOs who help to protect the environment through law in their States.

EDO NSW has recently released a number of new and updated publications:

  • Campaigning and the Law in New South Wales
  • Caring for Country: A Guide to Environmental Law for Aboriginal Communities in NSW, 2nd Edition
  • Caring for the Coast: A Guide to Environmental Law for Coastal Communities in NSW, 2nd Edition
  • Getting the Drift: A community guide to pesticide use in the NSW Northern Rivers
  • A Guide to Private Conservation in NSW
  • NEW Mining Law in NSW: A guide for the community
  • Rural Landholder's Guide to Environmental Law in New South Wales, 3th Edition

Visit the EDO website at


Birds in Backyards

The Birds in Backyards website,, is designed to link old and new bird lovers alike into the magic of Australian birds. An initiative of the Sydney-based Birds in Backyards program supported by Birds Australia and the Australian Museum, the site is focused on urban birds, habitats and conservation issues and is relevant for the 85% of Australians who live in urban areas. Special Features include:

  • Bird Finder – name that bird!

The Birds in Backyards Bird Finder, is the first comprehensive tool to help you name that elusive bird on-line. It allows users to enter the size, shape and colour of a bird. This prompts identification of your bird, from an initial database of 150 species found in Sydney and other Australian east coast cities, with work underway on the final target of 800. You can also listen to the calls of 120 species

  • On line Volunteer Bird Surveys

Who will hear the first Koel of Spring?

Where are all the Superb Fairy-wrens?

  • Birds in Backyards guidelines, relevant for any gardener wishing to create and sustain bird habitat in any area from domestic gardens in high-density urban landscapes to those of rural townships.  There is a suite of guideline for:
    • Domestic Gardeners
    • Schools
    • Bushland Managers
    • Councils and Planners
    • Landscape Architects
    • Street Tree Planners
    • Open Space Managers

The guidelines can be accessed at


Florabank websiteFlorabank logo

Florabank aims to increase the availability of high quality native seed for large scale revegetation projects across Australia and bring people together to share information and resources about seed management.

Florabank recognises and shares the best available knowledge from research and practice in native species seed management.  Florabank supports a professional and clever seed industry, encouraging quality and choice for buyers of native Australian seed.

The website includes best available knowledge from research and practice in native species seed management.

Florabank develops locally and regionally adaptable online decision support tools on the website for the native seed industry including a:

  • Vegetation management selector, helping NRM practitioners to determine the best revegetation option for their site or project objectives;
  • Species Selector Key, using the Lucid software to allow revegetators in pilot regions to select appropriate species for their site and purpose;
  • Best Practice Seed Collection Key, enabling the collector to maximise genetic diversity at their collection sites or collect from species provenance ranges for revegetation sites where local provenance is important;
  • Site Description Tool, guiding enabling users to best describe their revegetation site; and
  • Links to Greening Australia's Native Vegetation Resource Directories with up to date information on native seed research, best management practices, and key references.

Foster a market of "premium price for premium seed" by recognising different standards of seed collection, handling and storage procedures.



Australian Soil Resource Information System

The Australian Government recently announced the new Australian Soil Resource Information System (ASRIS). ASRIS is a product of the Australian Collaborative Land Evaluation Program, a partnership between CSIRO, the National Land and Water Resources Audit and all Australian States and Territories.

The ASRIS site is designed as an interactive web tool to give Australian farmers new productivity gains through access to world’s best practices and technology. It will provide information to enable regional natural resource management groups to plan, monitor and evaluate their investments in soil management. ASRIS can be accessed online at and further advice is available from CSIRO on 02 6246 5922 or email aclep at


Catchment Modelling toolkit

More than 20 products are now available in the Catchment Modelling Toolkit developed by the Cooperative Research Centre for Catchment Hydrology. The toolkit can be accessed at


Weed Resources for Schools

Developing greater awareness of weeds and their management in the wider community will be more achievable by starting with the younger generation in schools today. With this purpose, the following resources and projects have been developed through the education program of the Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) for Australian Weed Management and the University of New England.

Visit the University of New England's School of Environmental and Rural Science Weed Resources for Schools section at,-soil-and-environment-systems/weed-science where you can find:

misbehaving plants
Misbehaving plants is a big book with an introduction to weeds, a narrative story, a cartoon strip and factual information describing weeds. It was developed in consultation with experienced lower primary / infants teachers. While the book was developed for early stage teachers, the content and lesson activities suit a range of abilities, making it appropriate for a wider range of primary classrooms.

lord of the weeds
Lord of the Weeds, a report-writing competition for high school students included resources such as suggested lesson activities, student proformas to guide students through writing the report, marking guide and appropriate contacts for teachers to use. This way, finding a weedy site in the school or local area became the only difficult thing to do.

ghastly guests
Ghastly guests is an upper primary unit of work that investigates weeds with links to the curriculum in each state and territory of Australia. The unit includes suggested lesson activities with accompanying worksheets and teacher resources.

weed wipeout
Weed Wipeout is an interactive game where the player is in a position of managing a farm with weed problems. The player is required to make decisions regarding the most appropriate weed management strategy, and then discovers the results of these decisions. Humorous and unexpected events appear, keeping the job at hand very interesting. Who will be wiped out, you or the weeds?


Weeds management game and competition for schools

Weed Wipeout is an interactive computer game where the player is in a position of managing a farm with weed problems. The player is required to make decisions regarding the most appropriate weed management strategy, and then discovers the results of these decisions. Humorous and unexpected events appear, keeping the job at hand very interesting.

The game simulates real life with the player using their bank account to deal with the weed problems on the farm. Players are exposed to problems such as build up of herbicide resistance, the costs and time involved in controlling weeds and other problems that are associated with managing a farm.

This game was developed through the Weeds CRC with the purpose of providing a fun and enjoyable way to learn about weed management.


Understanding Canberra's wetlands

A school curriculum program for the study of constructed urban wetlands

The ACT Department of the Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water and the ACT Department of Education and Training have produced a 56 page coloured booklet on constructed and natural wetlands. Units of work are provided for early childhood, later childhood, early adolescence and later adolescence. They focus on three essential learning achievements:

ELA 2 - The student understands and applies the inquiry process

ELA 19 - The student understands and applies scientific knowledge

ELA 20 - The students acts for an environmentally sustainable future

These units build understanding of what a wetland is and the place of wetlands in larger systems. They explore the practice of managing urban stormwater by constructing urban wetlands.

In order to understand that the Canberra region hosts a diverse array of wetlands, information is provided on sites such as the Jerrabomberra Wetlands, Ginini Flats, Nursery Swamp, Horse Park and Lake George. A case study focuses on the David St, O'Connor urban wetland, constructed in 2001.

Understanding Canberra's wetlands: a school curriculum program for the study of constructed urban wetlands (2010) - can be downloaded from the ACT Department of Environment, Climate Change, Energy and Water website.


Reducing the current risk of serrated tussock expansion

Lori McWhirter, Agronomist, DPI Goulburn and Sherryl Broderick, National Serrated Tussock Coordinator have released a fact sheet about reducing the current risk of tussock expansion.

Research indicates that serrated tussock germinates mainly in autumn but can germinate throughout the year given adequate soil moisture and temperature. When they first germinate tussocks are only one fine leaf blade and are difficult to see. However, the seedling stage is the weakest part of the lifecycle and the most effective time for preventing expansion. In the coming months, germinating seeds may have little competition for soil moisture, nutrients and light.

The best chance of preventing further spread of infestations is to promote rigorous competitive pastures and to maintain a rigorous mechanical or chemical control program to prevent growth and seeding. The fact sheet advises assessment of the proportion of groundcover to enable concentration on rehabilitating areas at the greatest risk of invasion.

     (  84 KB)


The Flora of South-East Yarrowlumla - A Preliminary Assessment (Peter Barrer, 1997)

"Flora of South-East Yarrowlumla" coverThis survey of native vegetation in the south-east of the Yarrowlumla Shire (now Palerang Council local government area) was carried out to map and describe the existing remnants by Peter Barrer in 1994-95.

Plant species and floristic diversity were sampled over 15 sites or localities within the study area, and details of one further site were obtained from the literature. In excess of 350 native plant
species have been recorded in the study area, most during the present study. Forty-six plant species are described as being of conservation significance because they are either threatened, rare or uncommon on a national, state, regional or local basis.

Areas of remnant vegetation were assessed for their significance in terms of size, plant diversity, faunal habitat or potential as a wildlife corridor. Particularly significant areas were  recommended for further ecological assessment.

A number of recommendations are made regarding the conservation of existing remnant vegetation and areas for further study.

This project was carried out with funding from the Australian Nature Conservation Agency through the Save the Bush and One Billion Trees grants scheme.  Peter Barrer carried out the majority of field work, and provided the bulk of the text for this report which was finalised after Peter passed away in 1997. Guidance and  support for the project were provided by the Stoney Creek Landcare Group (now Carwoola Landcare Group).

The report is available for downloading - caution large file.  Hardcopies are available from Carwoola Landcare Group for $10 plus postage.

( 1,360KB)


The Bushlands of Mt Foxlow - Harrisons Peak - A Preliminary Ecological Assessment (Nicki Taws, 1998)

"Bushlands of Mt Foxlow-Harrisons Peak" coverA survey of the flora of south-east Yarrowlumla Shire carried out by Peter Barrer in 1994-95 identified a 10,000 hectare block of bushland around Mt Foxlow - Harrisons Peak as being of particular conservation significance and worthy of a more detailed ecological assessment.

The first stage of a three stage study of the bushlands was completed in 1997, assessing the ecological qualities and values of the study area. In particular, significant plant species, associations and faunal habitats were identified, and management guidelines in relation to planned burning in the area have been proposed.

The bushlands contain a range of vegetation types including small areas of wet sclerophyll forest and wet heath - shrubland, intermediate sclerophyll forest, dry sclerophyll forest, and savannah woodlands. Within the vegetation types a range of vegetation associations were identified and mapped.

This project was carried out with funding from the Australian Nature Conservation Agency through the Save the Bush grants scheme for the Stoney Creek Landcare Group (now Carwoola Landcare Group).

The report is available for downloading - caution large file.  Hardcopies are available from Carwoola Landcare Group for $10 plus postage.

( 1,298KB)


Best Practice Guidelines for Urban Irrigation

In a first for the water industry in Australia, a national set of best practice guidelines for urban irrigation and home garden irrigation was developed in 2006. This major achievement for the industry is the result of a project funded by the Water Services Association of Australia and the Irrigation Association of Australia.

The Guidelines come in two parts:

Guide to Good Garden Watering: a 4-page publication is a simple reference for home gardeners and provides basic information about irrigating home gardens.   Download your free copy Guide to Good Garden Watering ( 2.5MB).

Urban Best Management Practice Guidelines : a publication intended as a guide for the commercial irrigation sector for $10 for non-members.

Visit the Irrigation Australia website for more information.


BUSHWISE IN QUEANBEYAN: living with bushland

"Bushwise in Queanbeyan" coverBushwise in Queanbeyan: living with bushland is a practical community resource aimed at helping residents to reduce their impact on bushland as well as encouraging sustainable living to help protect the natural environment.

The book contains information on Queanbeyan’s special relationship with bushland, local native flora and fauna, sustainable gardening and issues related to water and fire.

The information in this book was compiled with the help of local scientific, landscape and landcare experts, rangers, residents, officers of Queanbeyan City Council and senior students and staff from the University of Canberra.

It is based on feedback from a survey of Queanbeyan residents conducted in 2005 to determine interest in issues related to living with bushland and to identify information that residents would like to have.

This project has been assisted by the New South Wales Government through the Our Environment – It’s a Living Thing program and is a joint initiative of Queanbeyan City Council and Carwoola Landcare Group.

Bushwise in Queanbeyan: living with bushland is a free book. It will be distributed in early August 2006 to all Queanbeyan residents whose properties are next to bushland.

For those Queanbeyan residents who do not receive a copy, further copies may be obtained at the Environmental Services counter at 257 Crawford St, Queanbeyan City Library, the Tourist Information Office or the Queanbeyan Nursery.  It may also be downloaded from the Queanbeyan City Council website.

Download Bushwise in Queanbeyan: living with bushland  ( 9.3MB)

If you have any enquiries about Bushwise in Queanbeyan: living with bushland, please contact Natasha Abbott of Council’s Environmental Services, on 6285 6270.


Life in the Suburbs

Promoting urban biodiversity in the ACT

The Life in the Suburbs project is an initiative of the Australian National University (ANU) in partnership with the ACT Government, the Australian National Botanical Gardens (ANBG), CSIRO, National Museum of Australia, National Capital Authority, and the Sullivans Creek Catchment Group. The initiative is supported by the Australian Government’s Natural Heritage Trust.

The project commenced in 2002 with the Lower Sullivans Creek Catchment Ecological Survey (LSCCES). The survey, Australia’s first comprehensive ecological survey of an urban study site, aimed to learn more about the fauna of the urban sub-catchment, and the role of urban landscapes in providing habitat for local species.

Urban Habitat Guidelines for the ACT ( 1,410KB)

Provides a guide to understanding the importance of urban habitat. The Guideline includes principles for managing urban habitat, steps to reduce human induced threats to urban biodiversity, and practical guidelines for developing habitat gardens and landscapes. The guideline includes many links to ACT specific information, educational resources and contacts.


How to build cat-proof fencing and enclosures

Contrary to popular belief, cats don’t have to roam. Providing their basic needs are met, cats can enjoy longer and healthier lives when safely contained to the property. They won’t be hit by cars, injured in fights, become lost or catch fatal diseases such as feline AIDS. Containing cats to the property helps protect wildlife from predation, and prevents neighbourhood disputes about cat nuisance issues. Cat confinement is also a legal requirement in new Canberra suburbs.

This booklet, produced by the Victorian Department of Primary Industries provides provides instructions for building:

  1. cat proof fencing (ie modifying existing fencing to make it ‘cat proof’, giving your cat free access to parts of, or your entire, yard)
  2. a cat enclosure attached to another structure (eg the house or a shed), and
  3. a free standing cat enclosure.

The instructions in this booklet should be easy to follow for people with basic D.I.Y. skills. Staff at your local hardware store may also be able to help answer any questions. However if you find the D.I.Y. instructions in this booklet too difficult, you could pay someone else to do the building, or buy a commercially available product (look under “Pet Shop Suppliers” in the Yellow Pages).

Download booklet ( 538KB)


Horses Land & Water Management guidelines

The Horses Land and Water Community of Practice is a group of like-minded people who share information about a set range of topics, in this case, horse keeping and good land management practices. The Horses Land and Water Management guidelines for whole of property, paddock management and intensive horse keeping can be accessed at

Other resources available include workshops, forums and newsletters.


Responsible Horse Ownership

Horse property management
When you buy or lease land on which to keep your horses you generally do so to provide an environment for them which is safe, provides room for movement and preferably is able to provide them with pasture on which to graze. However you also have additional responsibilities to manage that land so that it does not become degraded and cause problems for the wider environment. The good news is that by responding to and meeting this extra responsibility you provide benefits for yourself, your horses, your neighbours and, of course, the land. The horse property management section of the Equiculture website introduces you to some of the knowledge that you need for good property management and all the benefits that that brings.


Weeds website: Weeds in Australia

On Wednesday 19th September, Better Homes and Gardens’ Graham Ross joined the Australian Government in calling on all Australians to think about how plants in their garden could be contributing to one of the nation’s greatest environmental problems – the spread of weeds.

With the Minister for Conservation, Senator Eric Abetz, and the Assistant Minister for the Environment and Water Resources, John Cobb, Mr Ross launched a new website - - to help people identify which plants can be a problem in their local area, and to provide advice on how to manage them.

The website is part of a national campaign to highlight the problem of weeds and to prevent their spread into the environment.

“Some of the most invasive weeds in our environment have escaped from gardens into adjoining bushland, waterways and national parks,” Senator Abetz said. “Of the 20 weeds identified as Australia’s worst, 16 were introduced for ornamental purposes.

“Weeds are now a $4 billion annual drain on agriculture in lost production and weed control costs.”

“Most Australians love the bush and have a strong desire to do the right thing.”

How you can help

Weeds are a problem for everyone. We can all take action to defeat the weed menace.Garden tool



On Australia Day, 2011, the Invasive Animals Cooperative Research Centre in partnership with many key groups released a new and improved RabbitScan website and a new online mapping tool for anybody to use anywhere in Australia – see

The website contains improved facilities for anyone with a rabbit problem, including on-line resources, links to funding grants you may be eligible for, information on rabbit control and monitoring damage, and support agencies in your local area. The website will also soon provide a photo gallery for rabbit management photos.

Feedback previously provided has also been used to re-develop the RabbitScan Google mapping tool to allow you to map rabbit sightings, rabbit damage and/or control being used for rabbits in your local area. This will enable you to create a Rabbit Management Map for your local area. We encourage you to revisit the web-site to learn more about what it can provide.

Previously registered users need not register again – registration details have been retained except for password. (You will need to obtain a new password using the Forgot Password page on the website.) Your previous sighting data will also be accessible for you to review/update, and new records can easily be entered by following the Online Instructions.   Once logged in, please update your details (as appropriate) by clicking the My Profile button.

We welcome and encourage you to enter new rabbit sightings, damage data or control information into RabbitScan to create a rabbit management map for your local area. This will also help to track changes in rabbit populations across Australia.

FeralScan is a new ‘citizen science’ project providing a free national web-based feral animal mapping and reporting tool that will have direct benefits to farmers, community groups and individuals managing pests and their impacts.


  • Engage the community in ‘citizen science’ for online mapping of feral animals and their impacts across Australia with pin-point accuracy, backed by a national awareness and education campaign.
  • Provide a free web-based mapping and reporting tool to allow farmers, community groups, indigenous groups, schools, individuals and non-government organisations to scan, map and report information on feral animals and the damage they cause.
  • Provide an online forum for anyone to share knowledge and information on feral animals and their impacts, and access essential information to support best-practice pest animal management.
  • Help to build a better picture about feral animals and the impacts/problems they are causing around Australia to our farmers, industries, urban areas, parks and reserves, significant sites, recreation areas, environment, culture and biodiversity.


Over the coming 6 months, FeralScan will provide species scanning web-sites for many species including:

  • Rabbits – RabbitScan
  • Foxes – FoxScan
  • Feral Camels – CamelScan
  • Wild Dogs – WildDogScan
  • Feral Pigs –FeralPigScan
  • Common (Indian) Myna birds – MynaScan
  • Feral Goats – FeralGoatScan
  • Cane Toads – CaneToadScan


About the Molonglo Catchment Group    Contacts    Links    Privacy
Send mail to webmaster with questions or comments about this web site.
Copyright © 2004-2015 Molonglo Catchment Group Inc.
Last modified: 19/01/2016