SWWAT started up in April 2019 with the intention of raising awareness of Sweet Pittosporum and other woody weeds and implementing an on-ground works programs.
The group is headed up by local Fisherman Garry Kerr. Garry is the founder of the organisation and is supported by a great team. The group has a strong work ethic and has delivered over 3,000 hours of volunteer weed work to the Portland district since its inception.
We believe our native forests, public and private lands should be free of woody weeds, especially sweet pittosporum, Italian buckthorn and polygala.
Our mission is to motivate, inspire and support community learning by promoting, and sharing information about how to control woody weeds.
We believe that:
We will foster and nurture the groups’ identity to ensure that a progressive committee remains committed to advocacy and partnerships that are mutually beneficial
That knowledge is power; an informed community will be more proactive and maintain their patch once support and extension work has been provided
All projects planned and supported by our group will either inform, educate, protect, enhance, and/or restore roadside character through on ground weed control activities
We will provide a conduit for government agencies and not for profits to access members of our community who are troubled by the state of our national parks and forests decline due to weed infestations
We will actively lobby the state government, local council and if deemed necessary the Minister for Environment about the loss of biodiversity that is occurring due to the infestations of weeds
Since incorporation we have rid virtually all of the Forest Park section of the Cobboboonee Forest of sweet pittosporum, and to some extent boneseed. The only exception being small sections of roadside adjacent to farms at central Gorae, the owners wishing to maintain privacy. We have now begun work at the Mount Clay forest.
Also our group has succesfully restored roadside character and in tern biuodicresity by removing woody weeds from the following roads:
Spinks Road (west of the creek)
Gorae Road (west of Berrys Road)
The Eight Mile Waterhole
Two-hour weekly working bees followed by morning smoko
Meetings are held at the Portland Yatch Club quarterly
Visitors welcome; contact Garry at Garry Kerr (see email below) or phone on 0427829748 if you would like to join the group or attend any activities
How to Join
Membership fees are set at $10.00 (this includes insurance and covers you personally at all our working bees and meetings)
All photos kindly supplied by the following: Dave Pitts, Lynn Murrell, Robert F. Farnes, Vivien Holyoake, Ivor Graney, Dr. Raelene Mibus and the Great South West Walk Inc. Disclaimer: The Southwest Environment Alliance uses its best efforts to ensure that the information we put on our webpage is correct at the time of publication. If you see something that doesn’t look or sound quite right please contact us so that we can take a closer look at what it is we may have got wrong.