Flying-fox colony modifications imminent

ABOVE: Clarence Valley’s mayor, Jim Simmons, met with Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis in October 2016, to discuss management of the flying-fox colony in Maclean. Image: Geoff Helisma

Clarence Valley Council (CVC) has secured funding of $34,000 under Stream 3 of the NSW Government’s Flying Fox Grant Program.
The money, to be matched by CVC, will be used for further habitat modification and weed control around the footpath and houses most affected by the flying fox camp at Maclean.
A report to next week’s council meeting states that the “proposed works involve further removal of Camphor Laurel from over the footpath and work on the buffer around the Nungera houses”.
The project will be assisted by in-kind contributions: “labour from the Green Army team [that] Council sponsors … [which] is funded by the Federal Government and managed on a day to day basis by Envite, but Council sets the work program”.
The report to council states: “Council only manages a very small part of the area the Flying Fox camp covers.
“The proposed work will be undertaken on Council land, Nungera land and DPI Crown Land. Council has concurrence from these land owners for the proposed works.”
The flying-fox camp’s modification will be completed in accordance with the Maclean Flying Fox Management Strategy – dispersal was determined “not to be viable when the strategy was being developed”.
“…works are likely to be carried out between February and May 2017,” the report to council states.
The bats that inhabit the Maclean colony – grey headed, little red and black – are protected under the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974 NSW, and the grey headed flying fox is listed as ‘vulnerable’ under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Act 1999.

Over the past 15 years Geoff Helisma has reported on all things Clarence Valley; telling stories about the tireless work of volunteers in community groups at one end of the spectrum, to investigating relevant local, state and federal government issues at the other.