Harriet Shing MP visits East Gippsland

Harriet Shing MP recently took the chance for a first-hand look at some of the great environmental work being done along the Mitchell River and on the Gippsland Lakes.

Along with staff from the East Gippsland CMA, Ms Shing’s first stop was with the Eastwood Landcare group on the edge of Bairnsdale.    The group showcased landscaping and tree planting they have done over the past 2 years, turning an overgrown weedy gully in to a thriving urban bush habitat.

President of the Eastwood Landcare group, Pauline Stewart explained the group regularly works on planting, weeding and general maintenance with assistance of local community members, local government, residential developers and the CMA.

Next was a visit to Picnic Point on the Mitchell River, possibly Bairnsdale’s best kept secret. Here the Picnic Point Reserve Landcare group showcased the work they have done to create a site that provides habitat for frogs, birds and native plants.   The CMA supported Picnic Point Reserve Landcare to remove willows in 2009 and the Landcare group has since worked tirelessly on creating a place where people can feel a million miles from town.   Most recently with the help of Rotary and a Landcare grant, the group has rebuilt the walking track, providing safe access to the point.

“These are fantastic examples of what can be achieved by a dedicated community with support from local business and government agencies” Ms Shing said.

Finally Parks Victoria gave Ms Shing a tour of Pelican Island off Nungurner where sand works have vastly improved the nesting environment for swans and terns.   Sean Phillipson from Parks Victoria lead a walk around the island and said this is another example of government agencies and community groups working to together to enhance the health of the Gippsland Lakes.

Acting CEO of the CMA, Craig Parker said it was a delight to showcase the work being done in the region.

“We live in a unique region with passionate people,” said Craig.   “Whether it’s boating, fishing or land based recreation, the entire community benefits from healthy rivers and lakes.”

“This visit was a great opportunity to demonstrate first-hand, the value strong community and agency co-operation adds to government investment.”

For more information about the East Gippsland CMA, please phone 5152 0600.