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Showing posts from February, 2011

February 2011 Newsletter

Actions Speak Louder than Words Friends of Stradbroke Island Feb 9, 9:34 PM An analysis of the words and actions of successive Governments over the past 20 years unfortunately reveals hypocrisy, political spin and deception. Instead of ‘protecting and preserving the Island for future generations’, there has been an expansion of mining and the destruction which it causes.WordsIn 1990, the then Labor Government led parliament and the public to believe that half of North  Read more… Birdbath Gatherings Friends of Stradbroke IslandFeb 9, 9:25 PM Female Leaden FlycatcherLittle Wattlebirds and Noisy Friarbirds  Read more… UNIMIN Charges Friends of Stradbroke Island Feb 9, 9:22 PM In December 2010 the court rejected a UNIMIN challenge to the current charges (taking the sand without permits).Last month the charges were adjourned to 14 June 2011. This is an unusually lengthy adjournment,  apparently sought by both UNIMIN and the Government. UNIMIN intend to make another legal challenge to the cha…

Actions Speak Louder than Words

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An analysis of the words and actions of successive Governments over the past 20 years unfortunately reveals hypocrisy, political spin and deception. Instead of ‘protecting and preserving the Island for future generations’, there has been an expansion of mining and the destruction which it causes.








Words
In 1990, the then Labor Government led parliament and the public to believe that half of North Stradbroke Island was to become National Park.^1

Actions
None. Had it happened then, it is likely that mining would have ended years ago. No National Park has been declared since the 1960’s declaration of a small area around Blue Lake. For the past two decades the Government has bent over backwards for the mining companies. It has extended expired leases and permittted the expansion of the destruction. Proof that the mines have become larger and more destructive can be seen by exploring google earth and nearmap.com.

Words
The Premier said in a pre-election letter in March, 2009 sent to voters that …

Birdbath Gatherings

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UNIMIN Charges

In December 2010 the court rejected a UNIMIN challenge to the current charges (taking the sand without permits).

Last month the charges were adjourned to 14 June 2011. This is an unusually lengthy adjournment,  apparently sought by both UNIMIN and the Government. UNIMIN intend to make another legal challenge to the charges on 14 June 2011.

FOSI and others continue to press the Government to charge UNIMIN with stealing and misappropriation/fraud.

Donations for the Save Straddie, End Mining Campaing

PLEASE SEND DONATIONS TO FOSI FOR THE SAVE STRADDIE, END MINING CAMPAIGN.

We can’t afford a multimillion dollar advertising campaign but our efforts have gained us good media and much public support. Courier Mail polls show 80% want mining to end now. Help us get the message out.

Email  emcphee@westnet.com.au for the account number or cheque to FOSI PO BOX 167 Point Lookout  Qld  4183

Moreton Bay: Flood Causes Environmental Crisis

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Although Southern Moreton Bay may have experienced less impact from the flood plume there is still a big question mark over the health of the marine life. There is a blanket ban on fishing in Moreton Bay and oysters are not being harvested. This is obviously affecting livelihoods on North Stradbroke Island.


CSIRO researcher’s robotic glider (the yellow submarine) has been deployed to work in conjunction with satellite imaging to view turbidity caused by flood run off in the bay. The glider’s sensors will help to obtain a view within the mud and debris. The three dimensional maps developed will help understanding of the dynamics of the flood plume and its likely effects on sea grass, fish, dugong, turtles, coral and other sea life. The researchers hope to assess the bay’s resiliance after this extreme event.

We just have to keep our fingers crossed that health returns to this unique marine ecosystem.  But there will be lessons to be learnt in managing run off in the future.

Fresh as a sea breeze

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The Stradbroke Chamber Music Festival returns with the whales August 2011
Winter brings whales to island waters and the sparkling Chamber Music Festival to its shores. The program for 2011 promises fine music and zesty performances delivered by a merry band of virtuosi. Mozart’s Gran Partita, Schubert’s Trout Quintet, a Debussy string quartet, Misinterprotato jazz trio, an intimate evening with Katie Noonan and friends . . . all this and much more will be presented with the festival’s usual warmth and informality at concerts in all three island townships. So mark these dates on your calendar now:
Friday 5 August  to Sunday 7 August Visit www.stradmusic.org for details.

Koala Survey

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Despite rain, wind, rain, storms, and rain for days previously, the NSI Urban Koala Survey 2010 was blessed with a day of sunny skies (and brisk breezes…and a bracing water taxi ride!). Certainly nothing to deter the 50+ volunteers who appeared at Dunwich Cemetery (or Point Lookout) on Saturday, October 16, with hopes of spying some of the local fauna, koalas in particular.



We divided into groups of at least four people and all scrutinised a delegated portion of Dunwich, Amity Point or Point Lookout for the entire morning. Our little group didn’t actually spot any koalas in ‘our’ bit of Dunwich but several curious locals (no doubt wondering what on earth was so interesting in the trees) assured us there had been koalas around recently & they frequently heard them grunting or fighting at night. We did find koala scratches on trees and some scats & surprised a large goanna and enjoyed wandering – with necks craned and eyes peeled – along Adams Beach and a bush track meandering so…

Pressures on Moreton Bay

It was disappointing to read in the Baycare News (the newsletter of the Moreton Bay Environmental Alliance, of which FOSI is a member) that a new high speed power boat service around Moreton Bay is commencing. The twelve passenger, rigid inflatable power boat will travel at speeds of up to 106km/hr but will reduce speed in ‘areas with endangered marine life’. High speed power boats, through direct strikes and noise pollution of their marine environment, are a potential threat to environmentally significant species such as dugongs and turtles which can occur throughout the Bay and not just in protected areas (for example: to the delight of passengers travelling on the Cleveland/Dunwich barge, whales with calves were sighted ‘close-up’ several times in the Bay during September).

Warning – Myrtle Rust

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Recently this serious and notifiable fungal disease has been detected in Queensland commercial plant nurseries. The rust poses a threat to some of Stradbroke’s dominant plant species, particularly bottlebrush (previously callistemon spp.), tea tree (melaleuca spp.) and eucalyptus spp. The rust is a distinctive egg-yolk yellow colour.


If you see it in your garden or in the wild please call Biosecurity Queensland on 13 25 23

For more information go to www.dpi.qld.gov.au

Straddie has a Problem with Mynas

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Concerned Stradbroke Islanders are taking action to try to stop the establishment and spread of the pest Common Myna (also know as the Indian Myna or -by some detractors -as “flying cane toads”) on the Island. Submissions have been written to the Redland Shire Council calling for integrated action and some trapping is taking place. Three main groups of mynas exist on the Island: a large group at Dunwich, a fairly small group at Amity and a small but steadily growing group at Point Lookout.



The species is listed by the IUCN (World Conservation Union) as one of the 100 of the world’s worst invasive alien species alongside Red Foxes and Cane Toads (both of which Straddie unfortunately also has to cope with). It is a serious environmental pest as it aggressively competes for nest hollows and food, adversely affecting the breeding success of native birds and hollow-nesting mammals. Mynas are an adaptable and omnivorous scavenger feeding on chicks, young birds and eggs as well as fruits, nec…

Shearwater Wreck

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Recently many  of us were distressed by the sight of large numbers of dead and dying birds on Main Beach. They were short tailed shearwaters often known as mutton birds. Local naturalist Michael Hines and Dave Stewart from Queensland Parks and Wildlife had been observing this event and noted carcasses every 5m for at least 5km, so there were considerable numbers of dead and dying birds.
Short tailed shearwaters are pelagic, that is, they live their life  in the open ocean and are a migratory species. There are approximately 23 million in the world, breeding  on the Australian islands during the warmer months mainly in Tasmania and Islands in the Bass Strait. It is the most abundant Australian seabird. There are about 285 colonies in SE Australia, 18 million  birds arriving in Tasmania each year. They have adapted to life on the ocean by having webbed feet for swimming, a hooked beak for fishing, and long and narrow wings for efficient high speed gliding. Shearwaters have a wing span …