Category Archives: News

All threats averted

A small group of heroes tackled FOBIF’s May walk, in spite of unfriendly weather forecasts and a slightly forbidding walk description, which piled threat on threat: climbs, creek crossings, fallen logs and loads of gorse. All participants survived this grim … Continue reading

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Tarilta, south end

FOBIF’s May walk will tackle the Tarilta creek valley from the Sawpit Track end, the starting point being  about a 30 minute drive from Castlemaine. This is the less travelled end of the valley: there’ll be steep ascents and descents, … Continue reading

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Have your say on the budget

Mount Alexander Shire Council’s budget provides an opportunity to influence Council on what citizens would like it to spend money on (and/or avoid spending money on). The draft 2022-23 budget went before Council at its meeting on 19 April, and … Continue reading

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Where should the signs point?

A project is under way to install new visitor information points along the Goldfields Track. The project involves 4 visitor hubs, 8 trail headboards, and up to 100 interpretive signs along the 200+ kilometre length of the track between Ballarat … Continue reading

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Walkers ascend Mount Alexander

In perfect Autumn weather seventeen people joined in the second FOBIF walk for the year last Sunday. The loop route on Mount Alexander involved some hard sections including a solid climb from Forest Creek up to the Goldfields Track. Views … Continue reading

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A case study, for your consideration

DELWP completed its management burn at Kemp’s Track in the Fryers Nature Conservation reserve in the last week of March. It was one of four significant department fires in this region. We had a look at the site on April … Continue reading

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The information should be easily available

So: what was the exact fire coverage at Kemp’s track? And what ecological positives and negatives were achieved in the exercise? The Code of Practice requires that ‘Monitoring programs will also focus on: mapping the extent and severity of bushfires … Continue reading

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Dialogues of the deaf 1: two arguments that never meet

Does fuel reduction burning work to reduce fire risk? For fire managers there is no debate. Their practice is governed by assessments of fuel load, and computer modelling of fire behaviour. Managers concede one thing: that some burns are too … Continue reading

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Dialogues of the deaf 2: an example

Tarilta resident Rob Simons sent The Conversation article to local fire managers asking they consider it before undertaking the upcoming Helge Track burn. The reply he got is remarkable, in that it completely ignores the argument of the article: ‘Thanks … Continue reading

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Dialogues of the deaf 3: what’s in a phrase?

The two arguments above have a rough parallel in ecology: Leaf litter is dangerous fuel which builds up and needs to be destroyed by burning. Leaf litter is important insect habitat, which reduces itself via invertebrate activity and natural decomposition. … Continue reading

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