ON Saturday, November 17, a number of fellow nature enthusiasts enjoyed one of the treasures of the North Coast - the Dirawong Reserve.
Northern Landcare Support Services hosted a community breakfast and a walk on the Dirawong Reserve at Evans Head.
They were joined by local flora expert, John Nagle from the Northern Rivers CMA to explore this natural wonder.
The Dirawong is an area of Crown Land made up of coastal heath, wetlands and coastal headlands of over 200 hectares adjoining the village of Evans Head.
It has significant Aboriginal and European cultural history embedded in its sands. Currently it is managed by a team of volunteers that are on the Dirawong Reserve Trust.
We enjoyed the uninterrupted views of the coast and the coastal heath vegetation that is still showing some colour. We discovered the numerous plant communities, native plant names, weeds, birds, history, and current environmental projects that have been active over the past few years. We followed up our wanderings and wonderings with a full hearted, tasty breakfast.
The Dirawong Reserve Trust received funding through the NSW Government's Environmental Trust Program for a three-year project to complete bushland restoration work. The aim was to rid the Dirawong of Bitou Bush, Glory Lily and introduced Coastal Tea Tree, legacies from the era of sand mining, through the use of methods that encourage regeneration of endemic native plants.
The low impact restoration methods being used have been developed over many years by Ellen White, an earlier member of the Trust.
As well as a great place to view heath flowers, the Reserve is an important habitat for wildlife. There has been recorded 61 species of birds, 15 species of mammals and 13 species of reptiles known to inhabit the Dirawong.
There are 27 species of plants occurring that have special ecological significance by being endangered or vulnerable through to uncommon in the area.
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