A combined Townsville Council, State Government, Commonwealth and
community based initiative to maintain and enhance our waterways in the
coastal dry tropics.

Increasing Community Engagement in Townsville Coastal Catchments for Biodiversity Project
Funded by the Australian Government's Caring for our Country program.


Activities and Events

Bluewater Creek | Bohle Northshore | Bohle Riparian | Bohle Wetland | Clemant Wetlands | Cocoa Creek | Community Nurseries | Creekwatch | Cungulla Foreshore | Cungulla Wetland | GBR Habitat | Geoffrey and Alma Bay | Horseshoe Bay Habitat | Horseshoe Bay School | M.I. Weed Awareness | Mundy Creek | Nelly Bay Catchment | Nelly Bay Turtle | Northern Beaches | Oak Valley Finch | Paluma Catchment | Petersen Creek | Rainforest Birds Book | Ross River | Rowes Bay Foreshore | Rowes Bay Wetlands | Saunders Beach | Toomulla Foreshore | Town Common Bike TrailTown Common Concept | Town Common Volunteers | Townsville Planning Scheme

Short Title: Town Common Volunteers

Long Title: Townsville Town Common Volunteer Training and Habitat Management

Location: Townsville Town Common Conservation Park

Organisation: Conservation Volunteers Australia

Project Summary:

Good works have been undertaken on the Town Common from 1999 to 2011 under the Revive our Wetlands (RoW) program (a national partnership between CVA and BHP Billiton). The RoW program engaged the Townsville Community in restoring native woodland and wetland plant communities at various locations through the park.

The key to the success of the project under RoW was built on CVA's model of community engagement, which involves the volunteers being supervised by a professional Team Leader and provided with free transport to and within the site. This opens the project up to many disadvantaged people within the community who may not have access to their own or public transport.

This project will assist the capacity of the Service Provider and community volunteers to establish a suitable wetland assessment monitoring program, undertake priority weed control and revegetation and to regularly monitor outcomes. These activities have been endorsed as priorities in the North Queensland Wetlands Network Pre-feasibility Study and a recent community workshop, which addressed the future use and management of the greater Town Common.

Issues Being Addressed :

Limited engagement of community in on ground catchment restoration activities

Loss and degradation of native wetland habitat through:

  • Invasive weeds
  • Inappropriate fire regimes
Past inappropriate land uses

Involved Parties:

Conservation Volunteers Australia will be the primary project driver and expect to engage at least 50 people over 12 months.

Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service - partnership to plan work activities.

Completed actions and events:

Town Common Team Celebrate National Volunteering Week after 12 years of volunteering

The Townsville Town Common is an iconic Wetland site with over 26 species of migratory wetland bird species. Conservation Volunteers has provided on going conservation helping to conserve this rare habitat by removing invasive weeds, seed collecting and other data surveys.

The Town Common is popular with volunteers at attracts mainly semi-retired people with experience and knowledge of the local area and university students interested in gaining new skills. Long serving volunteers have also shown their commitment to this site by attending for more than 9 years, which is particularly interesting for International volunteers who like to meet the passionate locals. Volunteers attend the site each Thursday and are currently concentrating their efforts on an area around the ring road and bird hides with the removal of guinea grass, increasing habitats and restoring biodiversity to these sites.

Highlights include attending festivals such as the Eco Fiesta, Upper Ross Community Expo, Heritage day and Fishing and Outdoor Expo, World Wetlands Day was held at the Town Common in February with a significant grass planting day and the support of media featuring the site. (May 2012 Snap Shot).

•    Regular Thursday on ground habitat management activities with volunteers including weeding near the freshwater bird hide, planting native grasses, spreading grass seed and collecting seeds. The bush tucker trail has also been cleared;
o    52 volunteer days / 509 volunteers
o    48,900m² weeded
o    Trees/grasses planted 877 over 2,500 m²
•    Grass planting day at the Common on World Wetlands Day 2 February 2012
•    Involvement in the Common Interest working group to improve access, community facilities and recreational opportunities associated with the greater Town Common area
•    Opportunistic awareness raising and training including ten TAFE students joined Creekwatch at the Town Common as part of their Conservation and Land Management Course – 29 May 2012