‘Great Aussie Bird Count’ swoops kids
Children attending a Corowa District Junior Landcare event at Redlands Hill Reserve on Thursday, October 25 took part in the Aussie Backyard Bird Count.
This event is one of Australia’s biggest citizens’ science projects. Students from Savernake, Oaklands, St Francis Xavier and Urana primary schools identified 15 species of bird in 20 minutes on the day and logged them into the national survey.
The overall aim of this national event is to count two million birds in the week of October 22-28 and to get people interested in our amazing Aussie birdlife.
Corowa District Landcare is proudly partnering with Federation Council to support the Aussie Backyard Bird Count and they hope to engage people of all ages in this annual event.
Students also learned about the aboriginal and white history of the reserve. Students were shown a number of scar trees and learned how bark was cut off gum trees to make coolamons, shields and canoes. The children were interested to learn that the vanilla scented wildflower called the chocolate lily (that grows locally around the district) was an important food source for aboriginal people. They roasted and ate the tubers of the plant.
To determine which birds and animals inhabit the reserve students looked for clues including scats, feathers and bones. They sighted two goannas, a few swamp wallabies, evidence of hares and echidnas. They even found a fox skeleton.
The children were interested to learn that miners lived at the reserve in the 1860s. They saw evidence in the form of old iron remnants, wash tubs and glass.
Redlands Hill Reserve was virtually cleared for gold mining but little gold was found.
Fortunately the plant life recovered and the 150-acre reserve is now a flourishing Grey Box Grassy Woodland which is an endangered ecological community.