Home' The Chronicle : Canberra Chronicle 10-03-2015 Contents Tuesday, March 10, 2015 - 10
Doctor looks for cure to rabbit plague
Ralph Farnbach volunteers with a dedicated band of Bush Heritage Australia volunteers to help keep rabbit
populations controlled in Canberra and surrounding areas in NSW.
Photo: Matt Bedford
Bush Heritage Australia volunteer
Ralph Farnbach is part of a dedicated
team of go-getters fighting a plague of
rabbits at Scottsdale reserve near
Alive with rare species of birds,
animals, fish and reptiles, the reserve
also features endangered grassy box
woodlands and temperate grasslands.
Rabbits, however, are one of the
many pests also found on the
Four times a year, Dr Farnbach car
pools with the other volunteers down
to the reserve, 45 minutes south of the
The small group has been baiting
the rabbits, gassing the warrens and
filling in the holes since 2008.
The results show success, with a
decline in the number of active
"About 60 per cent of the warrens
visited were active, now it is down to
about 20 per cent," he said.
"We're never going to get rid of all
the rabbits, but we've reduced the
With the reduction in the rabbit
population, the re-vegetation of the
reserve has begun.
Dr Farnbach said Bush Heritage
volunteers had witnessed success,
after the rabbits destroyed the natural
grasses, and their warrens caused
The retired doctor became involved
with the non-profit organisation
through tree planting.
"It was something to do when I
retired, something that was outside
and active," he said.
Dr Farnbach has helped map rabbit
warrens on Scottsdale and Mount
Ainslie, in preparation for the rabbit
He said he was proud of his work
beside three fellow dedicated
volunteers throughout the project's
Scottsdale reserve is part of the
Kosciuszko to Coast project, a
community partnership to help
landowners create connections
between remnant woodlands and
grasslands between Kosciuszko and
Namadgi national parks and forests of
the NSW far south coast.
Aged care DAs
due to be lodged
The ACT government's public
housing renewal taskforce will submit
development applications for
adaptable aged care dwellings in
Chisholm and Monash this month.
This comes as part of a plan to
replace 1288 outdated public housing
units and decant large concentrations
of public housing into areas across
It's planned 25 two-bedroom single-
storey units will be developed on a
17,082 square metre block on Isabella
Drive and Clive Steele Avenue in
Monash, and 20 of a similar style on a
6211 square metre block on Goldstein
and Hambridge crescents in Chisholm.
Taskforce executive director David
Collett said plans for the sites would
be submitted at the end of March and,
providing approval was granted,
construction would begin in late 2015.
LAKE VILLAGE POP-UPS
READY TO SPRING OPEN
The pop-up village is finally going to
After months of delays, Westside at
Acton Park, on the shores of Lake
Burley Griffin at West Basin, is slated
to open this week.
They've missed summer but they're
hoping to catch autumn before the
south-west facing shipping containers
start to feel the full brunt of the
The village, constructed from
shipping containers and a purpose-
made skeleton, houses a bar with
sweeping views over Lake Burley
Griffin and out to Parliament House.
ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr
said the first major event at Westside
would be Art, Not Apart on Saturday.
Police urge families to keep in contact at Skyfire
Behind the blue line
ACT Policing is urging parents
attending Saturday night's Skyfire
event to be aware of their children's
whereabouts at all times.
One of the biggest issues for police
at previous Skyfire events has been
reuniting lost children with their
Similar to last year, free Constable
Kenny identification wristbands will
be available for collection to help
return wandering children to their
Parents are urged to consider
strategies in case of separation during
the event such as nominating a
meeting point or location, such as the
ACT Policing stall, to stay at until
reunited with a family member, or
finding a police officer who can help
Parents should also ensure young
children have contact details on them
such as a phone number, so they can be
identified and parents contacted.
ACT Police officers will be roaming
the lake, mingling with revellers and
handing out Constable Kenny
identification wrist bands on the night
so don't be shy to approach them.
The ACT Policing stall can be
located on the southside of the lake at
Patrick White Lawns, behind the
National Library of Australia, from
5pm to 8pm.
A range of activities will be
available at our stall including getting
your picture taken with our star of the
night, Constable Kenny, who will be
teaching kids how to Stay OK.
ACT Policing will also be on the
lookout for underage teenagers who
are thinking of preloading'' prior to
the event or drinking in the vicinity of
the lake precinct. ACT Policing will be
out in force at Skyfire, with uniformed
and plain clothed police officers
targeting underage drinkers.
If you are caught underage drinking
or you are intoxicated at the event, you
will be taken to Woden Police Station
where a parent or guardian will be
called to collect you.
You may also face charges.
Police are urging people to be
sensible, be responsible and look after
Random breath tests will also be
conducted throughout the night.
If you are planning to drink, don't
drive. Organise a lift, assign a
designated driver or use public
transport. Police will be out in force
targeting drink driving -- if you drink
and drive, you will be caught.
ACT Policing is also urging people
who are driving to the event to take
their time, plan to arrive early and have
patience when leaving the event.
For more information on road
closures, please follow the ACT
Policing Traffic Twitter account
@ACTPol_Traffic to get all the latest
Behind The Blue Line is a column
supplied by ACT Policing.
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