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Dunecare

Byron Shire beaches are famous around the world due to their beauty, environmental characteristics and recreational value. Our local environment has the highest biodiversity and the highest number of threatened species in New South Wales! In Byron Shire there are 7 Dunecare Groups made up of local community members who work with Council and other groups to protect our beach and dune environments and conserve threatened species. Byron Shire has pockets of Littoral Rainforest, (rainforest by the sea) which is listed as a threatened ecological community. Unfortunately there are threats such as infestations of weeds (Bitou Bush, Asparagus fern, Glory Lilly etc) if left uncontrolled will out compete our native vegetation. Volunteer Dunecare members have eradicated weeds from large areas, however more help is always needed for maintenance and weed control in new sites. Dune stabilisation by revegetation is a priority and Dunecare groups plant native trees and shrubs as well as fence off remnant vegetation. Groups have received funding to build observation decks and to formalise walkways or fence off the vulnerable fore-dune area. Community education is an important role to prevent damage that dumping rubbish and weeds, or illegal camping can cause.

Our Dunecare groups meet for regular working bees and training days. Information is shared amongst participants and lots of invaluable work is completed. Everyone is welcome and participants benefit from the rewards of becoming involved in an active community environmental group like Dunecare. Why not give our beaches a hand and get involved by calling a local Dunecare group for more information.

Photo: P.Gibney

Dunecare groups in Byron Shire

New volunteers are always welcome, even if you can just help occasionally please contact your local group. Volunteering is lots of fun and no experience necessary as members of the groups will teach you as you go.

Brunswick Heads Community Dunecare Group

This group has been working in the dunes from Torakina to the surf club at Brunswick Heads for over 15 years. The removal of weeds and planting of local native species has resulted in well established vegetation and improved habitat for the many birds, wallabies, echidnas and other wildlife that these dunes support. The team meet every 4th Sunday of the month, 8:00 to 11:00am meeting either at Torakina car park or north side of Surfclub in Venutre Park.

Contact: Group Leader:Greg McDonald 0414 457 346 brunswickheadsdunecare@gmail.com 

Byron Shire Chemical Free Group

This group meets fortnightly 9am to 1pm on the cooler months of the year and 8am to 12pm on the hot months of the year. The group work on a five hectare Crown Land site south of Brunswick Heads Surf Life Saving Club, using the crowing method to remove Bitou Bush. In 2010 when they started the whole site was covered with Bitou Bush, and now there's only a quarter of primary work left, plus follow up.

Contact: Nadia 0478 272 300 email byronshirechemicalfreelandcare@gmail.com 

Green and Clean Awareness Team

The team meet at 9am near the car park on Clarke's Beach on the third Sunday of every month for dune re-vegetation followed by a BBQ.

Contact: Veda 0427 857 991 email vedaturner@gmail.com or Udo 1413 173 786

North New Brighton Dunecare

This group was formed in September 2009 and in that short time they have improved the dune vegetation by plantings and weed control. They meet on the second Sunday of each month 8 am till 12 noon.

Contact: Shane Ivey 0431 906 031

South New Brighton Dunecare

This group meets the first Friday of the month from 1:30 to 4:30pm, meeting at the southern end of the Esplanade at the Strand beach access point.

Contact: Robyn Bolden on 02 6680 1970 email robyn.boulden@australis.net

South Golden Beach Dunecare

Bush regeneration work at South Golden Beach has been successful in suppressing many of the environmental weeds.  

Contact: Ian Parer ianparer@hotmail.com

Suffolk Park Dunecare

This group has been working in the dunes for over 20 years. Their fantastic work covers more than 3km of dunes. They have restored a strip of endangered Littoral rainforest. Everyone is welcome to come along to their working bees on the first Saturday of each month. Training is provided at the working bees for all new volunteers, so no experience necessary and no chemicals are used at any working bees. Helen Brown’s famous morning teas are provided after each working bee.

Contact:  Helen Brown 02 6685 4964 email hellyh@bigpond.com

Cavanabah Dunecare

Cavanabah has remnants of Littoral rainforest which need protection from weeds. This group needs some new volunteers.

Contact: Bob Levett email wendylevett@gmail.com

General Enquiries about Dunecare and Landcare

For further information about participating in local Dunecare, NRCMA programs or other issues relating to natural resource management in the Byron Shire area, please contact: Alison Ratcliffe, Community Support Officer 02 6626 7028 (Tuesday and Wednesdays)  Email: alison.ratcliffe@byron.nsw.gov.au