Bushcare Volunteering: Preserving Chermside Hills Reserves for the Future

The Chermside Hills Reserves are home to over 200 species of native plants and over a hundred more of bird species. Thanks to dedicated bushcare volunteers, these natural habitats are being maintained for future generations to appreciate and enjoy.

The Chermside Hills Reserves consists of three reserves situated in Chermside West and McDowall, namely Chermside Hill Reserve, Milne Hill Reserve and Raven Street Reserve. Some 200 native plant species thrive in these natural areas including grass skirt trees, stringybarks, bloodwoods and banksia.

These reserves, however, are constantly under threat not only from extreme weather events but from weeds invasion as well. Volunteers are in constant battle with weeds that mostly originate from escaped garden plants. 

Weeds are generally non-native plants introduced mostly through human activities whilst some are spread to nearby areas by flood waters. They are notorious for invading natural ecosystems and altering natural diversity. They compete with native flora for space, water, nutrients and sunlight whilst aquatic weeds block waterways.

Habitat Brisbane Playlist / Video Credit: Brisbane City Council / YouTube
Creek and surrounding vegetation at Chermside Hills Reserve
Photo Credit: Brisbane City Council /  brisbane.qld.gov.au

Brisbane City Council introduced the Habitat Brisbane program in 1990, that aims to encourage bushcare volunteering. The program supports more than 160 conservation groups, including Little Cabbage Tree Creek Bushcare Group and the Downfall Creek Bushcare group. These groups contribute time and skills to preserve Brisbane’s key waterways and bushlands through revegetation and weeding.

Chermside Hills Reserve bushland
Photo Credit: Brisbane City Council /  brisbane.qld.gov.au

The Little Cabbage Tree Creek Bushcare Group is a small band of volunteers dedicated to the preservation of Chermside Hills Reserve. According to the group, there are more than 100 species of birds that thrive in the reserve along with bats, gliders, and swamp wallabies.  

Walking track through Chermside Hills Reserve
Photo Credit: Brisbane City Council /  brisbane.qld.gov.au

Coordinator Patricia Geue and the rest of the group meet once a month at the reserve, spending about two hours weeding and saving precious native plants in the area.

If you wish to join the group you may contact Patricia Geue on 0404 869 554 or send them an email at trishgeue@icloud.com.

Downfall Creek Bushland Centre, located at the Raven Street Reserve, also has a dedicated team of knowledgeable bushcare volunteers that manage weed species in the reserve. Apart from weeding, they also collect seeds to breed in their nursery for future planting in areas where revegetation is required. 

For more information about the group, you may phone Sandra on 0412 758 640.