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Edition May 2022


Feature Articles
Upcoming Events
Funding Opportunities
Landcare Opportunities


Dear <<First Name>>,

It looks like the autumn is well and truly here, with some places even catching their first frost last week. We hope sowing went smoothly for everyone - and heading into the winter months there is lots happening in the Landcare space so have a browse though our upcoming events!

We are expecting the Victorian Landcare Grants to open very soon, so groups get your thinking caps on, and Landcare members reach out to your committees if you have any ideas or projects you'd like to help work on that could benefit from funding.

Feature Articles

Native Grasslands Field Day with Warby Range Landcare

As part of a series of field days on sustainable agriculture, the Warby Range Landcare held their first bus trip to a number of sites with a focus on native grassland management on the 24th of April.
Dr Meredith Mitchell (AgVic) was the guest presenter on native grasses leading the group through the identification of some key species and how to manage them in a grazing context. Thanks goes to landholders Alastair & Deborah Kemp and Russell Ellis for sharing their knowledge.
Keep an eye out in upcoming newsletters to register for the next events!

Future Ready Farms

As part of the Ovens Landcare Network's successful application to the Future Drought Fund's Drought Resilience Program, we are starting to roll out a series of events designed to give landholders more knowledge and skills to better prepare for the future.
The first of these activities are focusing on farm water, with two upcoming events listed below.

Landcare members within the Ovens Landcare Network are also invited to submit an expression of interest for working on a Water Management Plan for your property. There are 30 positions available and this could be valuable for anyone who has struggled with water security in the past, or anyone planning on adding to or changing water infrastructure on their property.
This winter is a great time to take advantage of this program, to make solid decisions for your property and business while we enjoy yet another wetter season, and to get you ahead of the curve for drier seasons to come.

Upcoming Events

Introduction to Bee Keeping

Sunday 15th May | 9.45am-11.00am
Greta Hansonville Hall

Greta Valley Landcare hosts guest presenter David Briggs who will provide a fascinating introduction to the work of bee keeping in commercial agriculture. David will cover the biology of honey bees, the role of bees in agriculture and the interactions between beekeeping and the natural environment. 
Honey production in Australia is about 80% dependent on native (predominantly Eucalypt) flora.  He will discuss the sporadic flowering patterns of our Eucalypts and how this has shaped beekeeping in Australia. Register online here.

Improving Farm Dams - Future Ready Farms

Sunday 22nd May | 10am - 12pm

Ecologist Dave Smith from Sustainable Farms will discuss the latest scientific research on the multiple benefits of enhancing farms dams including improving water quality, supporting biodiversity and reducing carbon emissions. Brad Costin from AgVic will discuss water quality, dam catchments, and stock and domestic water use.
Lunch provided, register online here or contact Penny 0427613970.

Living With Deer Forum

Saturday 28th May | 10.30am - 3.30pm
The Pavilion, Pioneer Park, Bright

Hosted by Upper Ovens Valley Landcare: come along to a day of presentations to learn more about deer and ways to manage the impacts of feral deer on your rural or township property.
There will be experts in a range of deer control methods. These  include how to assess damage from feral deer, and controls such as using professional pest controllers, volunteer hunters, deterrents and disruptive activity along with physical asset protection such as fencing and guards. 
Registration essential for catering purposes.

Stock Water Reticulation - Future Ready Farms

Sunday 29th May | 10am - 12pm
Edi Upper

Join the OLN and Agriculture Victoria to learn more about farm water supply and demand, and gain an understanding of reticulation systems. This workshop will have a focus on stock water in our hill country and the considerations needed when dealing with slopes. Considerations such as pump sizes, friction loss in pipes and sizing, flow rate required, avoiding air locks and pressure requirement of pipes.
Lunch provided. Register online here or contact Penny 0427613970.

Producing more in varying seasons - Rutherglen

Tuesday 24th May | (8.45 for) 9am - 3pm
Rutherglen Research Institute

This hands-on workshop will demonstrate what producers can implement on farm to set up a flexible farming system to assist in mitigating risk with variable seasons.
The workshop is custom-made for merino and crossbred sheep producers with presentations from Jason Trompf - Leading sheep production consultant and farmer, and Lyndon Kubeil - Senior Sheep Officer, Agriculture Victoria.
Free Event  (Lunch and refreshments provided)
RSVP by Monday, 23 May online here.

Growing into a Climate Ready Future

Friday 3rd June | 1pm - 4.30pm

Join Swamps Rivers and Ranges as we assess the current situation and plan for practical actions to ensure the future of north-east Victoria’s native vegetation under climate change.

This event will be supported by case studies and a literature review to set the context. Attendees are encouraged to come equipped with practical ideas to help identify ways to ensure the future of our native vegetation
Cost $10, register here.

Better homes and neighbourhoods for a changing climate

Wednesday 1st June | 5pm - 8pm
Gateway Hotel, Wangaratta

Join Wangaratta Landcare & Sustainability at this Wangaratta community forum for inspiring speakers talking about adapting our homes and neighbourhoods to improve liveability.
A light dinner and refreshments will be provided. Registration essential for catering purposes by May 27th here.

Funding Opportunities

Gorse Small Community Grants | Victorian Gorse Taskforce

Applications close Saturday 28th May 2022

Through the Community Grants Program the VGT works to support communities in reducing gorse in their local area. The VGT are interested in helping landholders looking to control their gorse long-term. The program looks to educate and build community capacity around gorse and gorse control so that communities can take real ownership and overcome the problem. Now is the time to plan ahead and start a conversation with your community about gorse in your area.
Eligible Small Grant projects can attract up to $5,000 in funding and are available to community groups e.g. Landcare or Friends of Groups. Private landholders groups of two or more may also apply. To find the guidelines head here, and for more information contact the VGT Excecutive Officer - or 0417 593 250 or your local Landcare Facilitator.

Strengthening Rural Communities | FRRR

Applications close 5pm Tuesday 31st May 2022

The Strengthening Rural Communities (SRC) program aims to give the thousands of small rural, regional and remote communities across Australia an opportunity to access funding to support broad community needs.  Given the events of summer 2019/20, it has also been expanded to offer funding to support recovery in bushfire-affected communities.
Grants are available for a broad range of grassroots, community-led initiatives that directly and clearly benefit local communities. Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and assessed quarterly. For more information click here. For more information click here.

Nature-led Community Recovery Grants | Bushfire Recovery Victoria

Applications close Wednesday 1st June 2022

Grants up to $5,000 are available as part of the Nature-led Community Recovery Program, to support both the recovery of Victoria’s biodiversity and communities recovering from the Victorian 2019-20 fires.
Grants are available for projects that deliver on-ground action for recovering wildlife and habitats as well as educational or arts programs connecting environmental recovery with human recovery. Find out more here.

Small Environmental Grant Scheme | Norman Wettenhall Environment Trust

Expressions of Interest open regularly

Providing support for people undertaking projects that will make a positive difference to the natural living environment, in land, sea or air, rural or urban. The Norman Wettenhall Environment Trust supports grassroots organisations and individuals, and academics who are working with on-ground community groups. The expression of interest process opens regularly throughout the year. For more information click here.

Landcare Opportunities

SRR Mentoring Workshop 

Wednesday 18th May | 10am - 3pm
Free Online Workshop

This is a great opportunity for Landcare groups to learn about the benefits of mentoring while gaining some practical take away actions to implement in their own organisation. This workshop will be suitable for coordinators, facilitators and committee members who are interested in using mentoring arrangements within their organisations to develop skill sets, retain knowledge and encourage new volunteers.
Bookings essential 

Pilot Soil Monitoring and Incentives Program

Program closes on 30 June 2023

Farmers and other land managers can apply for up to $10,000 of Commonwealth funding to help pay for soil testing and contributions to a national soil database. DAWE’s two year, $54 million, Pilot Soil Monitoring and Incentives Program will capture and store new soil data that is vital for the management of this important resource.
The Program encourages land managers to begin or expand soil testing. It also supports farmers to undertake soil carbon measurements for soil carbon projects under the Emissions Reduction Fund. Find out more and register your interest here.


New research highlights wellbeing impacts of natural asset management 

A new publication arising from Sustainable Farms mental health research demonstrates the potential positive benefits to farmers’ lives of engaging in natural resource management (NRM) practices.

The paper, published in Society and Natural Resources this month, found that the specific NRM practice of tree-planting was linked to higher levels of social connectedness, while broader whole-of-farm approaches to NRM were associated with increased farmer wellbeing.

Anecdotally, many farmers report great satisfaction and increased personal wellbeing from engaging in practices such as tree planting and from observing the results of these practices. Kimberly Brown, mental health and wellbeing researcher at the Centre for Mental Health Research and Sustainable Farms at The Australian National University, and colleagues used data from the University of Canberra’s Regional Wellbeing Survey to test whether these relationships could be quantified.

“We found that tree-planting on agricultural land was linked to higher levels of social connectedness,” Ms Brown said. “This makes sense because many farmers engage in these practices as part of a local group, such as Landcare. Farming can be isolating work, and participating in NRM programs can give farmers a chance to connect with others in the community, which is so important for their mental health.”

Read more about this positive research on the Sustainable Farms website.
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