Parklands staff have been travelling recently with members of the Duduroa Dhargal Aboriginal Corporation and NECMA staff exploring different examples of wetlands restoration.

Following our Winton wetlands recce, last week we wandered the Mullinmur wetlands in Wangaratta, inspiring even more possibilities for the future of Ryans Lagoon at Bonegilla. Thank you to Wangaratta Landcare and Sustainability’s Mullinmur volunteers extraordinaire Tony Lane and Kelvin Berry for generously showing us around.

Mullinmur provides an outstanding example of community partnerships making things happen. With the support of the Sandhurst Diocese and NECMA, Wangaratta Landcare and Sustainability, the City of Wangaratta, and most particularly Galen and Borinya Catholic schools have together created a wonderful wetland education space.

The wetlands are visited frequently by student classes and the broader community. Hidden clearings, walking tracks, activity stations and simple but cleverly designed facilities provide options for every sort of activity from walking to community workshops, citizen science to STEM learning for school children at every level, nature based arts and crafts to picnics with nature play and exploration.

The wetlands have been restored by a sustained community program of working bees and activities, transforming the area from blackberry infested cow paddocks to functioning wetlands surrounded by diverse native vegetation and supporting wildlife including a plethora of waterbirds, fish and turtles.

We left absolutely inspired by the Mullinmur experience and keen to translate these ideas to the restoration of Ryans Lagoon.

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