Spotlight on Melaleuca Wetlands

Three people looking into the bushland of tall Melaleuca trees on Coochiemudlo Island

The changing face of the landscape in the Melaleuca Wetlands came under spotlight last month, three years into a project that has seen weed-infested hot spots transformed into areas of thriving biodiversity.

Evaluating the change last week, since his initial visit in 2019, was Healthy Land and Water’s Southern Area Manager Paul Donatiu accompanied by Senior Scientist, Chelsea Kluske.

Steam weeder at work in the bush with three workers.

In 2019 Coastcare embarked on the project supported by Healthy Land and Water through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare program to undertake weed reduction and rehabilitation as part of an effort to protect threatened species and Ramsar values. The chemical-free project is supported by Redland City Council with on-going effort of Coastcare volunteers who maintain designated workzones through the Melaleuca Wetlands.

Tali Shelley of Bushtekniq carrying a basket of pulled weeds in the bush.

After an inspection across several sites, contractor, Tali Shelley of Bushtekniq explained the process of supporting natural regeneration by methodically working from the strength of pristine areas and peeling back weed infestations including Singapore daisy, asparagus and fishbone ferns around the wetland edge on the south-east.

Regeneration of healthy native vegetation is testament to the carefully staged approach. See photos below showing the latest piles of hand-pulled and raked Singapore daisy before the saturated steam weeder reduces weeds to mulch. Follow-up steam application will occur with further hand removal in Spring.

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