PROJECT LIST:   Biodiversity;   Water;   Coast;   Land

King Island Landcare Strategy 2023 to 2033

The Strategy guides the activities of KILG. It focuses on what can be achieved on King Island in natural resource management over the next 10-20 years, and how best to achieve these goals for King Island’s asset areas of Land, Biodiversity, Coast and Water. We gratefully acknowledge the funding assistance for this project by the Australian Government’s Natural Heritage Trust, provided through Cradle Coast NRM. Download the plan here King Island Landcare Strategy 2023 to 2033 or email kingisland@landcaretas.org.au for a copy.

BIODIVERSITY

Asparagus Fern, Asparagus scandens – this weed has been declared a Weed of National Significance.

KILG is renewing its focus on asparagus fern, as it has become rampant in some areas of the island, smothering native understory, particularly along Fraser River and Grassy Rd. It is also rampant around Grassy and Grassy River. King Island Landcare is embarking on a long-term effort, starting with a 1 year project until June 2024. Activities include: some hand removal and chemical trials; mapping; and a Management Plan to inform future activity and leverage funding. Weeding days are planned and we are looking for people to volunteer, as often and for as long as they are able. Focus area to start is 1059 – 1250 Grassy Road, including the reserve near the Sea Elephant River. Supported by NRM North through the Tasmanian Government, Weeds Action Fund.

Enhancing King Island Brown Thornbill habitat for future corridor

This is a long term program to support threatened native species recovery on private land by working with landholders and land managers. Activities will promote the benefits of native vegetation protection and create a pathway to the establishment of linking habitat between identified KI Brown Thornbill populations. Started in 2022, it is on-going.
The program is informed by the Conservation Action Plan for the King Island Scrubtit and King Island Brown Thornbill and the Defining and mapping habitat requirements to support the survival of King Island threatened birds January 2023 report.

“Enhancing KIBT habitat patches for future corridor”,

Stage 2 2023-24 planning is under way, with sites mapped for native re-vegetation by direct seeding pasture areas and regeneration of degraded vegetation by excluding wallabies and over-planting with tubestock . A major challenge is to gather sufficient local provenance seed.

Stage 1 2022-23 completed April 2023, aids the recovery of the endemic and critically endangered King Island Brown Thornbill (KIBT) via protection and restoration of native vegetation through stock exclusion, improved wallaby and weed management. Around 8.5ha high quality habitat protected from livestock. This includes 5.5ha regenerated with direct seeding and tubestock plantings also protected from wallaby damage. Considerable community engagement has raised the awareness in the community of the plight of King Island’s special fauna. This project was supported by Cradle Coast Authority, through funding from the Australian Government Environment Restoration Fund.
Further stages are planned. Landholders interested in participating can find more information in this KIBT Landholder Engagement Brochure.

King Island native plant nursery

The community run nursery supports landholders and volunteers to use King Island endemic flora for native revegetation and regeneration activities. An important benefit is improving habitat and reconnect threatened bird populations. The Nursery Facilitator, Renae, will work with landholders and volunteers to ensure supply of seed for both direct seeding and propagation into seedlings ready for planting. Renae can be contacted by emailSupported by BirdLife Australia  www.birdlife.org.au

Seed collecting days for native vegetation plantings

With the warmth of the summer months some species that we are looking to collect are fast becoming ready.  Teams have started collecting and further days are planned in February. Usually there will be 1-2 hours collecting without travel time. Bring everything you need, snacks, water, sun/leech protection. Contact Renae by email if you would like to join in.

Species targeted in January: Necklace Sheoak (Allocasuarina monilifera) and Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata).

Native seed collection and Propagation of King Island Native Trees

The project involves the green team, a King Island District High school student led group, with propagation of KI native trees activities at the local nursery. A continuing project is planned, where we can educate students from seed collection, propagation, and planting through  participation in King Island Landcare revegetation projects and community projects. Supported by KIDHS teaching staff and with funding from King Island Council Community Assistance Program 2023-24

Inkweed Eradication – Phytolacca octandra L. p

We need your help! If you have seen this weed and know of its location, please contact us ASAP. Phone 6462 1825 or email: kingisland@landcaretas.org.au . This weed can rapidly become an environmental and agricultural problem so we need to act NOW! Inkweed has been found on King Island around Fraser Road, North Pegarah and Pegarah Forest. This is a NEW INCURSION on King Island, the only known location in Tasmania, was found in 2021. KINRM started an Inkweed control program to eradicate this weed from King Island with funding from Landcare Tasmania.  Click here for more information about this weed and project.

KILG continue to work towards eradication. Survey and eradication of Inkweed from King Island – to control Phytolacca octandra (inkweed) infestations on the east coast of King Island. Funded by Northern Tasmanian NRM, supported through funding from the Tasmanian Weeds Action Fund, a $5 million Tasmanian Government initiative funded until 2024. The funds provided by the Tasmanian Government will be invested with landholders, land managers, and other organisations to tackle weeds that are impacting valuable agricultural and environmental assets.

Building community capacity to restore native vegetation and monitor impacts of restoration effort.

The aims of the project:
1) build the understanding and capacity of the King Island community to restore and expand King Island’s native vegetation,
2) establish a method to measure, record, and analyse progress and outcomes of native vegetation restoration effort
3) facilitate adaptation of future effort based on monitoring results.

The King Island Native Vegetation Restoration and Monitoring Kit has been developed for the King Island community to use in on ground management and monitoring activities to protect and enhance biodiversity values and habitat for threatened species on King Island. Download a free copy of the here.

KILG acknowledge the support of “ANZ & Foundation for Rural & Regional Renewal”.

Ongoing weed control and revegetation

King Island Landcare on-ground works crew continue to carry out for Council, Parks & Wildlife and Sustainable Timber Tasmania along with work for private landowners.

Many Weed projects have been completed since 2010- variously funded through NRM North, CCNRM, Tasmanian Government, Australian Government and Landcare Tasmania’s funding grants:

Sea Spurge Mapping and Management Plan – A plan was developed and 2 control trial sites were established and treated.

Asparagus Fern and Spanish Heath Management Program – 7 hectare on 4 properties were treated.

Eradication of Serrated Tussock was within our sights after many years mapping and control of an infestation next to Colliers Swamp, in addition to fee for service work completed for several adjoining landholders. Serrated tussock is a serious weed of pastures and native grasslands, a declared weed under the Tasmanian Weed Management Act 1999, and a Weed of National Significance (WONS). Unfortunately, a new incursion has been discovered so a renewed effort by KILG will go into this area, whilst surveillance of the original area continues. PLEASE keep an eye out for this weed when in the area between Colliers Swamp and Gentle Annie.

Spray Unit Purchase – Tasmanian Community Fund Grant.

Threatened Species Recovery Plan for King Island Scrubtit and King Island Brown Thornbill

A Conservation Action Plan has been developed for both the King Island Scrubtit (Acanthornis magnus greenianus) and King Island Brown Thornbill (Acanthiza apical Archibaldi). A Recovery Team with members from all stakeholders including the KINRMG  was formed in 2019  under BirdLife Australia’s Preventing Extinctions Program.

Extensive searches to ascertain the abundance and distribution of both species were done and habitat information has been updated and is available: Defining and mapping habitat requirements to support the survival of King Island threatened birds January 2023 report prepared by Phil Bell and Matt Webb, Biodiversity Maintenance Australia.

Key information on the endangered King Island birds: King Island Scrubtit and Brown Thornbill Survey Results March 2019 report prepared by Matt Webb and Dr Ross Crates

“Enhancing KIBT habitat patches for future corridor”, supported by Cradle Coast Authority, through funding from the Australian Government.  It aids the recovery of the endemic and critically endangered King Island Brown Thornbill (KIBT) via protection and restoration of native vegetation through stock exclusion, improved wallaby and weed management.

Wings on King – monitoring the birds of King Island

Despite King Island being such an important location for birds, we know very little about the conservation status of the land birds of King Island or its value to birds migrating across Bass Strait. This project started in 2017 and continues as a joint program of the KILG and BirdLife Australia in association with Birds of King Island. We aim to:

  • monitor the presence, absence and populations of the land birds of King Island
  • establish current population levels of the King Island subspecies and monitor these in the future
  • establish how the Bass Strait migrating birds use the Island when they are here
  • watch for evidence of southward drifts in distribution ranges of mainland land birds

More information is available at Birds of King Island website.

King Island Landcare Group won the 2022 Natural Environment Sustainability Award for this ‘Wings on King’ project at the 2022 Australian Sustainable Communities, Tidy Towns Award, presented in Hastings, Victoria.

Volunteering Survey Effort – 2017-2021

  • 129 individual surveyors have participated
  • 2952 hours of effort – (estimate)
  • 680 surveys have been undertaken
  • 5654 individual species records collected

Of those Volunteers:

  • 98 were visitors to KI – who came specifically to assist with the surveys
  • 31 were King Islanders

WOK 2019 – 2020

The WOK spring surveys were all successfully completed under Kate Ravich’s leadership. Visiting surveyors included Fred van Gessel (Australian bird expert and author) and ornithologist Mark Holdsworth. Fred recorded bird calls during his visit and has since donated the files to KINRMG. The survey included a very exciting field trip to find KI Brown Thornbill. “Excellent views were obtained and at one point we had 5 birds in the immediate vicinity at one time which is more than has been recorded previously. ”. The autumn 2020 survey was scaled back because of COVID restrictions. The survey was possible without visitor participation because there is now a local base of trained keen observers, demonstrating the success of one of WOK’s key objectives.

Acoustic Sensors to monitor fauna activity have been set up on Kate’s property and at Pegarah State forest, with assistance from KI Council and PWS. This is part of a five year national project conducted by The Australian Acoustic Observatory using 400 continously operating sensors.

King Island Feral Cat Population Control

KILG are supporting feral cat trapping on the island, responding to renewed interest amongst the community and business to work together to control numbers of feral cats. In addition, KILG are actively working with a number of organisations to develop a long term population control program. More info: KILG and stakeholder activities. The long-term aim of KILG is to eradicate feral cats from the island. Further progress is dependent on cooperative projects with King Island Council and the Tasmanian Government.

2006 to 2007 – the first King Island Cat Control Project was funded by WWF and Threatened Species Network, to protect from cat predation the Orange-bellied Parrots when they come to rest here during their migration.

KINRM continued working on controlling feral cat populations in 2010. Downloads available: King Island Cat Management Plan 2008 – 2013 and King Island Cat Control Program 2010

King Island Herbarium –

27 samples of the have been framed to allow for public display with funding through KI Council community grants program 2022-23. The Herbarium has been collected by Ken Baker, Margaret and Graeme Batey – often at Field Naturalists outings, and is a great collection of pressed KI plants housed by KILG. Identification of plants is confirmed with the Tasmanian Herbarium and Margaret often sends samples for the State collection. It is planned to display the collection, in both temporary and permanent spaces.

Feral Deer Population Control –

King Island is classified as zone 3, so “no deer” is the broad management objective of the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania. In recognition of the increasing challenges landholders face managing deer, there is no limit on the number of antlerless (any female deer, male fawns and antlerless males) deer that can be taken under a hunting licence or permit. The decision to tag male deer taken using Property Protection Permits in Zone 3 is at the discretion of the land manager.

Knowing the extent of the problem is an important part of managing the feral deer population. Trail cameras are being used to estimate deer abundance and geographic distribution in areas supporting low to medium abundance of the species. King Island community can help the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania implement their Management Plan by recording sightings. Download the DeerScan app. – easy to use and uploads data to ensure we know where the deer are

Impact of Forest Raven populations on Black Currawongs

Since 2017 KINRMG members have worked with Matthew Fielding (Utas)

Protection of ‘Coastal Complex’ and Tufa Terraces at Boggy Creek Project

View the Project Image Gallery & Coastal Complex Info Sheet. KINRM aim to protect ‘Boggy Creek Geoheritage Site’, otherwise known as ‘tufa terraces‘, and ‘Coastal Complex on King Island’, a rare and endangered ecological plant community, by excluding stock and controlling weeds. The tufa terraces are in Cataraqui Point Conservation Area, while the Coastal Complex on King Island lies in the coastal zone as well as into the neighbouring landholder’s property. In 2017 landholders fenced out part of their coastal paddock to protect the endangered plant community.

Project funding started through the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country initiative and continued through the Australian Government Communities Environment Program.

Purchase of weed spraying unit and trailer 2014

The unit was initially available for hire to landholders. Support for use by KINRMG staff lead to the beginning of the ‘Weed Crew’ doing fee for service work on behalf of KINRMG.

2007-2012

The King Island Biodiversity Management Plan 2012-2022,

KINRMG completed. This replaced the King Island Threatened Species Management Plan 2008, DPIW.

King Island Natural Resource Management Strategy 2010-2020

Development and implementation program completed,  funded by CCNRM

King Island Herbarium Project 2010- 2023

2023- King Island Council funded “Framing the Herbarium”- 27 important samples were photographed before framing the preserved samples. An exhibition of the framed samples will be held October 2023.

2010- 4 field trips were conducted in this community capacity building project,  funded by CCNRM

Wallaby exclusion plots in coastal areas

8 exclosure cages were monitored to determine the effect of over-browsing by wallabies and possums on native vegetation, funded by CCNRM. KI Field Naturalists continued the monitoring as volunteers after funding had finished.

Orange-bellied parrot habitat management and restoration on King Island 2007-2008

2003 to 2007

Environmental Management Systems Pilot Program

Working with farmers to identify and address environmental issues.
One of 18 national pilot projects funded by the Natural Heritage Trust, Australia wide and the only one in Tasmania.

Sixteen farms participate in the program with farm mapping, risk assessment and the development of an environmental management plan.
Consolidation of project in 2006/07 through monitoring and evaluation, benchmarking, external reviews and developing continuous improvement cycles. More Information…

2004 and On-going

Threatened Birds Recovery

A project funded by the Threatened Species Network, to: determine the extent of vulnerable to critically endangered birds, and to address their habitat needs; to raise awareness in the community about King Island’s threatened bird species; collate data of bird sightings and encourage Green Rosellas to breed, through volunteers setting up and regularly checking nest boxes. More Information…

2000 to 2003

Devolved Grant

Included fencing, re-vegetation and direct seeding, and waterway protection, the development of several strategies and the publication of a number of books and reports. A community group worked intensely for over a year on the publication of ‘King Island Flora: a field guide’. A revolving fund was set up to protect valuable ecosystems on the island through buying properties, covenanting and re-selling, this is ongoing run by Tasmanian Land Conservancy.


WATER

Rehabilitation of lower reaches of Porky Creek, ongoing

This highly successful project has rehabilitated the lower reaches of Porky Creek. Both the KINRM weed team and the adjoining landowner continue to control difficult weeds such as boxthorn. Originally funded through Tasmanian Landcare Association grants 2011-2012, this project has had a great deal of volunteer input. Activities include: initial clearing of boxthorn and other weeds; 41 Ballarat and Clarendon students planted 75 trees; further planting and seedling maintenance by volunteers; on-going weed follow-up by KINRM Weed Crew. The project has been sponsored by Landcare Tasmania, Wildcare Inc, Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service, King Island Dairy/Lion, KI Men’s Shed and HBL.

Biodiversity and Water Monitoring on King Island. Cradle Coast NRM 2010-2011

Data collected includes water monitoring of selected waterways, comparison vegetation data from 2010 to 2011 on wallaby exclosures, a small study involving protecting the endangered orchid Pterostylis cucullata (leafy greenhood) from wallaby browsing and recording differences with unprotected sites. Only 2 Orange-bellied parrots were recorded during the blitz in March 2012, in which staff of the Threatened Species Unit, Tasmanian Parks and Wildlife Service and volunteers monitored all known sites for the presence of the critically endangered bird. Population monitoring and habitat restoration work will continue to be completed by volunteers and as project funds become available.

Waterwatch 2000 – 2011

King Island WaterWatch Project Details

KINRMG ran water monitoring and education activities over many years culminating in Water Quality and Stream Condition on King Island, 2004 – 2008

Aims were to:

  • To collect sound scientific data on the quality of King Island’s key waterways;
  • To inform & train the King Island community in “caring for waterways”;
  • To establish and maintain an island wide community-based water quality program
  • The work focussed on water quality data collected at sites located on the following waterways: Sea Elephant River, Ettrick River, Fraser River, Yellow Rock River, Porky Creek, Egg Lagoon Creek, Seal River, Yarra Creek, and Lake Flannigan.

Since 2001

Waterwatch: to assess the quality of King Island’s waterways. [Project Details]
The project was for a time part of North-West Waterwatch and included monthly monitoring of nine sites to obtain baseline data of the quality of King Island’s streams, additional monitoring by community members and educational activities for the community, including school students. More details…


COAST

Tufa Terraces at Boggy Creek Protection Project

KI Natural Resource Management Group continues to protect ‘Boggy Creek Geoheritage Site’, otherwise known as ‘tufa terraces’, and ‘Coastal Complex on King Island’, a rare and endangered ecological plant community, by excluding stock and controlling weeds. The tufa terraces are in Cataraqui Point Conservation Area, while the Coastal Complex on King Island lies in the coastal zone as well as into the neighbouring landholder’s property. The landholders have fenced out part of their coastal paddock to protect the endangered plant community. The project began with funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country initiative and has current funding through their Communities Environment Program.

The ‘tufa terraces’ rim stone pools are delicate formations, which are nationally significant and listed in the Tasmanian Geoheritage Database.
Removal of the coastal weed Sea Spurge will also protect these sensitive environmental assets from weed invasion. Sea Spurge will be replaced with coastal native plants where needed. Dune vegetation will also be enhanced to stop erosion and weed spread. Community groups, individuals and schools will be encouraged to be involved in weed removal and planting.   View more project details, and project image gallery.

Currie Wharf Bush Restoration Project

The area is a great example of King Island coastal bushland, including peaceful gullies and lookout spots. It was overrun by weeds and most of it is very difficult to access, but plantings and natural regeneration are turning this area into a thriving, diverse coastal habitat.

lighthouse keepers track sm

A new track links the harbour with the museum and Currie Light, following the path taken by Lighthouse Keepers in the past.

This project won the Australian Community Media Landcare Community Group Award 2019.

See more progress photos.

This site of approximately 19 ha is located directly adjacent to the Main Street of Currie and contains some recreation tracks, seats and lookouts already established by King Island Council, making it an ideal site to access for community awareness activities in the future, as well as tourist walks.

The project began with funding to KINRM through Australian Government Caring for our Country in 2011 and has current funding through their Communities Environment Program. The program has received much support and funding from Cradle Coast NRM, KI Council, KI Ports. The site is much improved, now more accessible and user friendly, as a result of stakeholder support and massive amounts of time and energy given by community volunteers.

Life on the Coast – funded by Tasmanian Landcare Association

Community and school field days to  promote weed management, shorebird and habitat awareness, and responsible use of coast to avoid disturbing shorebirds feeding and breeding areas.

Seaspurge Mapping 2010, and development of management plan,  funded by CCNRM

Coastal Users Guide – funded through CCNRM

Coastal vegetation grazing exclosure trials – funded through CCNRM

Extended monitoring of Alternatives to 1080 Program at four priority coastal sites, in conjunction with KI Field Naturalists Club.

LAND

2021

Sustainable Agriculture

Field days on pasture production and presentations on animal health and nutrition for beef producers with The Pasture Pathways project. This was funded by DPIPWE and conducted by Ana Pimenta who generously stepped in to manage the King Island presentations.

Sustainable Farming Projects

Regional Landcare Facilitator, five year position, Australian Government sponsored

Open The Gates

A video about 7 King Island farmers sharing experiences and knowledge

OpenTheGates

King Island Farmers’ Survey 2016

See the results from 39 King Island farmers who replied to an online survey about their farm management processes and concerns.

Geology of King Island – Guide and Excursions

A program to present the geological history of King Island in a user friendly format, resulting in 2 publications Part 1 : The Story and Part 2: Excursions by Clive Calver, with permission form Mineral Resources Tasmania

Restoring carbon and building resilience to climate change 2013 – 2014

On-ground works at 16 sites to improve biodiversity and carbon storage: establish and restore wetland and waterway habitat, improve connectivity, weed control. Community engagement included 3 field days with Ballarat and Clarendon College students.

Environmental Management Systems Pilot Program

Biodiversity Fund 1 Project

Pampas Grass Project

Wallaby Management

Fire

Waterwatch

2013

Reduce reliance on inorganic forms of fertilisers and improve soil biology on King Island

The project focus on impacts of changing management strategies to enhance release of nutrients bound in organic forms.

KI has an intensive beef/dairy production and depends on imported fertilisers (25% more costly than mainland price), increasing costs and soil and water pollution.

KI has a variety of soils, including acid sulphate and salinity problems, making it difficult to know which management strategy is appropriated.

The project will provide a great opportunity for farmers to interact with experts and explore the biological potential of soils, understanding how management and use of on-farm/organic nutrient sources, including home products (e.g. kelp), impacts on biological processes associated with pasture growth and soil health.

2010 to 2012

Sustainable farm nutrient management on KI Dairy and Beef Farms

Three projects funded by Landcare Australia, and Cradle Coast NRM.

Dr Bill Cotching, TIAR, tested 6 properties on King Island in October 2010 funded by the federal government program Caring For Our Country.

Nutrient budgets show that some farms are applying a surplus of nutrients while others are applying a deficit, which may require some adjustment. The variability between paddocks highlights the importance of regular soil tests. Economising on soil tests by only doing a small number of paddocks can lead to some paddocks being over fertilised and others under fertilised.

Three projects followed up this original project and included:

A soil fertility and drainage workshop. – Lesley Irvine, Dairy Extension Officer, talked about soil fertility and Dr Bill Cotching talked about drainage. Over 20 farmers participated in the Workshop.

A field day followed the workshop where Dr Bill Cotching gave a small talk about soil tests before sampling one paddock with all the participant farmers.  About 30 farmers participated in this field day.

In March 2012 Dr Bill Cotching delivered the final report for the project. Dr Cameron Gourley, Agricultural Scientific Researcher, DPI Vic, presented infomation from “Accounting for Nutrients on Australian Dairy Farms” and Dr Richard Rawnsley, Research Fellow, TIAR, discussed nutrients on farm.

Download the presentation on Drainage and Wet Soil Management by Bill Cotching Waterlogging Management on King Island 

Climate Change Impacts on Farming

Well attended workshop on climate change and carbon emissions, funded through Tasmanian Climate Change Office

2008-2009

Alternatives to 1080 Project

In collaboration with DPIW and TIAR research the browsing impaact of Bennett wallabies on pasture, establishing baseline data on population size  and research cost effective control.

2007

Consolidation of KISHAP

King Island Salinity Forum with expert panel and development of Salinity and Waterlogging Control Manual.

2002 to 2006

KI Salt Hazard Assessment Project (KISHAP)

Addressed management actions and hazard assessment of salinity on King Island, included the use of electromagnetic induction mapping and a hydrogeological study, drainage workshops and field days. Deep drilling to consolidate the results of KISHAP in 2006 completed the assessment. More Information…

KI Salinity Management Action Program (KISMAP)

Following the successful Salinity Partnership Project 2001, this project investigated the salinity problem in the north of the island and determine ways to best cope with it. A number of landholders set up piezometers on their properties and monitor once a month. Some trial pasture plantations were established to test salt-tolerant species.  A presentation of the sites is displayed at Reekara Community Complex. More Information…

History of environmental change on King Island 2004,

a community group project produced From Gentle Giants to Green Pastures – A history of environmental change on King Island – Edited by Eva Finzel. Funded through a Tasmanian Bicentenary Grant.

2000 to 2003

Devolved Grant

Included fencing, re-vegetation and direct seeding, and waterway protection, the development of several strategies and the publication of a number of books and reports. A community group worked intensely for over a year on the publication of ‘King Island Flora: a field guide’. A revolving fund was set up to protect valuable ecosystems on the island through buying properties, covenanting and re-selling, this is ongoing run by Tasmanian Land Conservancy.

1998 to 2001

Development NRM review and strategic action plan for King Island to integrate Landcare projects by optimising an island wide approach to natural resource management.

Last Updated on 2 February 2024