Friends of the Porongurup Range

A unique environment where  people can link with nature through study and recreation Lucia Quearry    
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Twin Creeks

Photo courtesy Lucia Quearry

The 511 hectare (1260 acres) Twin Creeks Community Conservation Reserve, part of Australia’s National Reserve System, is situated on Knight Road in the valley of the Kalgan, between the Porongurup National Park to the south and the Stirling Range National Park to the north. The Reserve, owned by the Friends of the Porongurup Range, was purchased in 2004 in order to preserve and protect the remnant vegetation which contains a rich diversity of plant species. The National Reserve system is made up of Commonwealth, state and territory reserves, Indigenous lands and protected areas run by non-profit conservation organizations and private landowners.

Past agricultural clearing has resulted in fragmentation of the native vegetation between the Porongurup National Park and the Stirling Range National Park. Remnant vegetation covers about 10% of the landscape resulting in the isolation of many flora and fauna species. To the north of Twin Creeks lies a 600ha private property with protected vegetation. Together with Twin Creeks, the two properties form a vital parcel of land in the flora and fauna corridors between the two National Parks.

Significant corridors are being created and enhanced by the Oyster Harbour Catchment Group’s Ranges Link Project which ultimately becomes part of the greater Gondwana Link of Western Australia’s southwest. www.gondwanalink.org

Gondwana Link map

Named for the two creeks which meet on the property and flow to the Kalgan River, Twin Creeks’ land forms and soil types vary: upland laterite, flooded ironstones, deep grey sands and granite outcrops each have their own plant species, some rare and endangered. In the spring the natural wildflower displays draw many visitors, particularly orchid lovers.

Common Donkey Orchid diuris corymbosa Zebra Orchid - Caladenia cairnsiana
Common Donkey Orchid
Diuris corymbosa
Zebra Orchid
Caladenia cairnsiana  
Twisted Orchid Thelymitra flexuosa
Twisted Orchid
Thelymitra flexuosa 
King Spider Orchid
Caladenia pectinata

 

Foxtails Andersonia caerulea Harsh hakea Hakea prostrat

Foxtails  
 Andersonia caerulea

Harsh hakea   
Hakea prostrata  

Drumsick Aspopogon sphaerocephalus Purple kunzea Kunzea recurva

Drumstick   
Ispopogon sphaerocephalus

Purple kunzea
Kunzea recurva

All flora photos courtesy Lucia Quearry

National Wildlife Corridors Plan

Chair of the National Wildlife Corridors Plan Advisory Group, Mr Bob Debus, visited Twin Creeks in June 2013 as part of a tour of Gondwana Link, the Porongurup Weed Control Project and the Stirling Range National Park. Members of Gondwana Link and the Oyster Harbour Catchment Group joined members of Friends of the Porongurup Range for lunch at Twin Creeks. Mr Debus, in his report to the Hon Tony Burke MP, recommended that Gondwana Link be nominated as a good example of a major corridor in the proposed National Wildlife Corridors Plan. The Ranges Link and Twin Creeks Conservation Reserve are being considered for inclusion in the National Plan. www.environment.gov.au/topics/biodiversity/biodiversity-conservation/wildlife-corridors

Left:  Mark Waud, Project Office Oyster Harbour Catchment Group, Bob Debus, Chair of the National Wildlife Corridors Plan Advisory Group,  Peter Luscombe, Ranges Link, Lorna Long, Chairman of the Friends, & Judy Hunt, Oyster Harbour Catchment Group.
Top:  Judy O’Neill, Bob Debus, Peter Luscombe, Keith Bradby, Mark Waud.  Front row:  Kelly O’Neill, Judy Hunt, Lisa Braun and Leela Smith. 

Corridors Plan photos courtesy Klaus Braun

Rhizobium Field Day

Friends of the Porongurup Range hosted visiting botanists at Twin Creeks in In In September 2013, Microbiologist, Dr Julie Ardley, Research Officer, Centre for Rhizobium Studies, Murdoch University brought botanists from South Africa, Russia and Scotland to Twin Creeks to gather plant samples.  The scientists are conducting a comparative study between the South African and Southwest Australia temperate flora.  They collected wood and bark of some native pea plants as well as Proteaceae, Ericaceae, Rhamnaceae, Asteraceae and Myrtaceae species from Twin Creeks and neighbouring properties.

Peter Luscombe, Ranges Link member and local botanist emeritus, located an impressive amount of collectable specimens, and, without hesitation told them which species they were collecting. The two ladies labelling and recording information were extremely pleased about that!  We were grateful for Peter’s exceptional assistance.

Peter Luscombe with botanists Peter Luscome and Dr Julie Ardley & overseas botanist

Peter Luscombe, Dr. Julie  Ardley and botanists from South Africa, Russia and Scotland at Twin Creeks

We encourage the community, primary and secondary schools, colleges and universities to enjoy the reserve, assist in its conservation and ecological restoration and use the venue as a research and education resource. As an educational tool, students of any age are some of our most valued visitors; they are the future of conservation. All are welcome to assist in our challenge to preserve what remains of our natural heritage.

Plans are on the drawing board to include a resource/visitors centre, new bush trails, interactive signage and a notice board for visitors who want to share their discoveries with others.

Mt Barker Primary School students planting paperbark seedlings Medical students planting at Twin Creeks

Left: Mt Barker Primary school students planting Melaleuca preissiana.   Right:  Medical students from UWA planting Brachysema serica seedlings; a legume which occurs naturally in the creek system.  Planting carried out (successfully)  just behind the northern boundary of Twin Creeks.

The Reserve is open to the public for day use, with a sheltered BBQ pavilion and several walk trails. There is limited access to some areas as a result of ongoing revegetation projects and dieback concerns.

 


 
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