Caring for Jack’s Flat

Article image - Caring for Jack’s Flat Celebrating 21 years of caring for Jack’s Flat.

Twenty-one years of caring for country has transformed a bare paddock into a beautiful bushland habitat in Sorell Council, Tasmania.

Southern Beaches Landcare Coastcare (SBLC) volunteers began revegetating and restoring habitat on the Sorell Council reserve and the adjacent Crown Land riparian reserve, an area locally known as Jack’s Flat, in September 2000 as an Olympic Landcare funded project. 

Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) assisted local volunteers with planting, installing fencing to keep sheep out of the creek and the construction of a stile to give access to the creek. 

Twenty-one years later, what began as a neglected paddock of grass and weeds has been transformed into a diverse habitat for native flora and fauna, sheltered by the trees and is now an important green space for locals to enjoy. 

On 17 April, SBLC hosted a community gathering on site to celebrate their 21 years of caring for Jack’s Flat Reserve. 

The celebration consisted of an Acknowledgement of Country, fireside stories over damper and billy tea and an Aboriginal Cultural Heritage walk and talk, followed by an opportunity to explore the fauna and flora on the reserve which included bird watching, orchid spotting and identifying tracks and scats.

SBLC Secretary and long-term member, Gwen Egg, said, “We are commencing a new and exciting phase in the rehabilitation of Jack’s Flat to regenerate native grassland. 

“We plan to incorporate Cultural Burning as a component of our continuing care for the reserve by collaborating with a team from the Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre with the necessary knowledge to plan and conduct cultural burning at Jack’s Flat.”

SBLC commenced in 1991 with volunteers helping to look after remnant native vegetation and the coastal environment from Lewisham and Dodges Ferry plus Carlton, Carlton River, Park Beach, Primrose Sands and Connellys Marsh. 

They hold regular working bees, manage local reserves and run projects to restore habitat and protect the natural values of this beautiful area.

This event and other projects undertaken by SBLC have been supported by Sorell Council through the
community grant program.