Friends of Chiltern Mt Pilot NP Newsletter #314 March 2022


President : Neville Bartlett  Ph: 0412 399 239

Correspondence to: Tony Murnane Secretary/Treasurer:

ewsletter: Neville Bartlett:

Dear Friends,
The weather forecast for our March field indicated showers but we proceeded anyway. Small groups were assigned different parts of the Park to gather rubbish that had been discarded along roadsides. Main sealed roads were avoided for safety reasons. A variety of refuse was collected and handed to rangers Brian and Scott. Alas, the weather closed in with some heavy showers and most of us retreated to the Senior Citizens Hall in Chiltern.


 1 - Cyanide Dam (1353) (NRB)

A full Cyanide Dam and a modest bag of rubbish. Photo: Neville Bartlett

At noon the delayed 2021 AGM took place with all of the reports being presented and approved followed by the election of a new committee for the few months left before the next AGM.

President: Neville Bartlett

Vice President: Margaret Considine

Secretary/Treasurer: Tony Murnane

Newsletter Editor: Neville Bartlett

Committee: Eileen Collins, Lyn and Bill Boulton, Jennifer Davidson, Helen Carse, Simon Bennett, Mick Webster, John Hawker, Richard Jerome and Peter Gotham.

Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata) in the Park – an update – Neville Bartlett

A few years ago, Trust For Nature arranged for about 150 Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata) plants to be planted along Settlers Road in the Mt Pilot Section of the Park. Earlier plantings had been been very unsuccessful as the conditions had been very dry. Friends assisted with this planting and have kept an eye on the latest plants and made sure that the tree guards were not disturbed. Early disruptions from a wombat soon abated and the plants have done very well during the last couple of wet years. A recent survey revealed that about two thirds of the plants are thriving and three representative images are provided below.

2 - Banksia (Small) (1337) (NRB)


 3 - Banksia (Medium) (1342) (NRB)

 4 - Banksia (Large) (1343) (NRB)  

The three images above show a healthy small plant, a thriving plant that has reached the top of the guard  and an exceptional plant. Photos: Neville Bartlett

Anyone wanting to find out more about the overall context related to this planting can refer to Mick Webster’s excellent article [Silver Banksia (Banksia marginata) – a vital missing tree in our forests] in the Friends newsletter that is available on the Friends website by following this link.


Kurrajong Bag Moth – Dichocrocis clytusalis – an update – Neville Bartlett
It is the time of year when the impact of this moth is evident and this year has been particularly bad especially in our area at Baranduda. One of our members sent some photos that were readily identified. The question remained as to whether this damage to the trees was permanent as it certainly does not look like the tree will survive. Over the recent few weeks, the trees have all responded as shown in the next two images.
5 - Kurrajong Bag Moth (1371) (NRB)
Kurrajong Bag Moth (Dichocrocis clytusalis) infestations and the tree’s response. Photos: Neville Bartlett6 - Kurrajong Bag Moth (1370) (NRB)

From the distance the new leaves are not visible as they are a brown colour that matches the chrysalises. Closer inspection gives us much optimism for future of the trees.

Eileen Collins has written an excellent article on this moth in Friends newsletter #303 in March 2021.


Vale Norman “Alan” Francis Gibb – Neil Blair
Alan, a longtime member of the FOCMP, died on the 25th February aged 78yrs. His working life began as a farmer at Bobbinawarrah, running a dairy and sheep. His lifelong interest in the natural environment replaced farming as his main occupation in mid-life and he developed a broad knowledge and many friends and contacts through working in what is now DELWP, the Wangaratta Technical School, a native nursery and environmental projects. He furthered his connections with memberships of APS (Australian Plant Society) and the local Landcare group and many other voluntary environmental groups as well as a friendly working relationship with the Royal Botanical Gardens.
He had a passion for learning and a love of photography. He had a great home library on the natural environment and was locally well known for his environmental photographs. He covered Australia and his remarkable home garden contains many distant plants that he grew from collected seeds on his trips. His major passion was Acacias and he spent his latter years driving all over Victoria photographing the Wattles of Victoria.
With his knowledge, his readiness to share it and his extensive network of similar minded people, he will be greatly missed by many. 
2022 AGM
The 2022 AGM has been deferred slightly this year and will now take place at the usual time on Saturday 5th November 2022. It is hoped that it will take the usual format of an afternoon walk followed by a dinner, the AGM and a guest speaker.

February 2022:  34 mm. Total for year-to-date 2022: 279 mm.

In 2021 we had 193 mm up to the end of February.

The average annual rainfall for Chiltern is 689 mm.


The field day activity will involve two main activities:
Group 1 will go for a bird walk at Bartley’s Block followed by weeding and planting of wattles in the former Vinca area near the gate. The bird walk will take place first as the birds will be more active than later in the morning.
Contact Margaret Considine on 0419 282 710.

Group 2 will start by checking the mammal boxes at Bartley’s Block and the proceed to do some weeding at Grasslands Block.

Contact Mick Webster on 0429 017 229.

Please bring a hat and gloves along with your own food, drink and a chair.

Meet at the Chiltern Post Office at 09:00am.

We request that people attending abide by the prevailing COVID-19 advice:
Dates for 2022-23

For 2022: Sunday 3rd April, Saturday 7th May, Sunday 5th June, Saturday 2nd July, Sunay 7th August, Saturday 3rd September, Sunday 1st October, Saturday 5th November and Sunday 4th December.

For 2023: Sunday 5th February, Saturday 4th March, Sunday 2nd April, Saturday 6th May, Sunday 4th June, Saturday 1st July, Sunday 6th August, Saturday 2nd September, Sunday 8th October, Saturday 4th November and Sunday 3rd December 2023.

Rule of Thumb: For even months, the field day is held on the first Sunday of the month and for odd months, it is held on the first Saturday of the month


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