Enabling change in our Society, Environment and Economy (SEE)

Birdscaping Canberra

SEE-Change obtained an ACT Environment Grant in late 2017 to undertake re-vegetation near Sullivans Creek in O’Connor. ACT Environment Grants fund community projects that support environmental activities, help strengthen participation and engagement in community led environmental initiatives. Many great projects were successful in the 2017-18 grant round. Find out more here.

The SEE-Change project is called Birdscaping #CBR: bringing back birds, butterflies and bees.

Why did we apply for the grant?

Wildlife corridors are missing in Canberra’s suburbs and many animals such as small birds are absent. Canberra has lots of mown grass and scattered mature trees, while attractive, don’t provide many habitat opportunities. This sort of landscape favours larger more aggressive birds. The idea of the project is to reinstate a diverse range of locally occurring native plants that will provide homes for critters.

How will we attract small birds?

Studies by Greening Australia shows that by restoring groundcovers and shrub layers (in which small birds can nest, forage and hide) the numbers of small native birds will increase. Vulnerable bird species, like the Scarlet Robin will benefit from the recreation of this type of habitat. The inclusion of logs will increase the range of invertebrates, including beetles, butterflies, moths and bees which many birds feed on.

Research by the ACT Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment found that the Scarlet Robin risks extinction in the ACT within the next 25-50 years.

Factsheet on Vulnerable ACT birds

How will the community be consulted?

The first stage of the project was to obtain funding. Now that we have been successful on that front, we will hold two community consultations on the site. These consultations will be led by planning experts, Purdon.

We are seeking community feedback such as:

  1. How do you use the site?
  2. What would you like to see? Do you have any key desirables from the design?
  3. What concerns do you have?
  4. Would you be interested in contributing your time to the project?

The community consultation pop-in sessions are:

Consultation 1 – adjacent to Sullivans Ck bike path: Thursday 15 February 5.30-7.30pm

Consultation 2 – adjacent to Sullivans Ck bike path: Saturday 17 February 10-12pm

If the community is supportive, what will happen next?

Sections of the site will be prepared by Greening Australia for planting and the community will be invited to a series of working bees to install plants and cardboard guards (to protect plants from predation and dogs and people).

An initial concept sketches of the project can be viewed here and here 

Four working bees will occur throughout 2018. The first planting will happen in the cooler weather ie late Autumn/early Winter. Conservation Volunteers Australia will assist with plant maintenance and we will maintain the plants for two years. After two years the plants should begin to thrive.

Bird experts will be invited to survey the site, before, during and after the revegetation to monitor bird numbers.

We are also working with ACT for Bees and plan to construct a bee hotel for the site.


Dickson wetlands working bee


What plants will we use?

We will use locally occurring hardy native plants suitable for the area. These will be sourced from Greening Australia.

Plant list and numbers birdscaping & native pollinators

More plant information and photos

How many plants?

We will install 2800 tubestock (small plants) which have a good chance at being successfully established.

How can you be involved?

If you are interested in volunteering for the working bees and assisting in planting, please get in contact with us on: event@see-change.org.au

Lyneham wetlands working bee

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