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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Time is of the essence to Preserve Remnant Bushland at Highfields

Time is of the essence to Preserve the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve in Highfields, Queensland.  The Toowoomba Regional Council - Transport and Drainage Depatment are pushing through the date for a vote by councillors on a proposed footpath & clearing through the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve on O'Brien Road at Highfields this coming Tuesday 21st January 2014.

This footpath proposal is a gross encroachment on a biodiversity area of ecological significance and a terrible injustice to Mr & Mrs Rogers who bequeathed this 4 hectare bushland block of land to the Crows Nest Shire Council in 1994.  Since then the councils have been amalgamated and the Reserve is now managed by the Toowoomba Regional Council.

A footpath for residents and school students is not something I or the local residents are against, it is the location however through an area that was identified as an "Endangered Ecosystem" under the Queensland Vegetation Managment Act of 1999.

While this reserve is relatively small, due to local urban development, it is now even more so than before imperative for local wildlife and native plant species that reside within its boundaries.  In planing my petition I had aimed to get a comprehensive list compiled by local experts to use towards my plight, however due to the decision now being finalised in a few short days, this has proven more difficult.  I am very grateful to Pat and Kath from the Toowoomba Bird Observers Organization for visiting the Reserve this week and providing me with an extensive list (that was far greater than the one I had created during my visits).  It is amazing how diverse a small habitat can be. I myself am very grateful of this generous donation of land to the local people and will do everything I can to ensure it is protected for future generations to enjoy as it was intended.

Please help me by signing the online petition by Monday afternoon the 20th of January 2014.  The petition can be found online here:  https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/mayor-paul-antonio-preserve-charles-motee-rogers-bushland-reserve-at-highfields

I have created a Facebook Page to share information about the Reserve and the communities plight to save it.  You can Like the page here:  https://www.facebook.com/charlesandmoteerogersbushlandreserve

I am very grateful for the support I have received in such a short time and hope that enough signatures are added to the petition to make a difference.  Please forward the campaign to your friends and family. Your help is greatly appreciated.

Kind Regards
Judi Gray

This is one of the many Giant Trees "painted" within the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve on O'Brien Road at Highfields by surveyors from the Toowoomba Regional Council.

The top half of another giant Sydney Blue Gum tree with hollows for Gliders in the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve at Highfields.  This tree is also marked with yellow paint by surveyors from Toowoomba Regional Council as part of their proposed footpath project through the reserve.

A large amount of fresh diggings can be seen within the reserve, proving that Echidna's and Bandicoots rely heavily on this habitat at the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve.

Native Snake Vine at the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve, Highfields.

Juvenille Dollarbirds were seen during my visit to the reserve today.  These birds would return to this reserve to breed year after year, and then return to New Guinea in around March and April.  It is amazing to think such a small bird can travel such a long way.  We are lucky to have these noisy colourful birds in such prolific numbers in the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve.
This is the preferred location for a footpath which is adjacent to the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve and on the western side of O'Brien Road. It is a much more preferable option that is safer for students and residents and would not result in any destruction of the reserve.

This is an existing footpath on Rogers Drive behind the Charles and Motee Rogers Reserve.  This is the same type of kerb-footpath that would be ideal for the existing cleared footpath on the western side of O'Brien Road adjacent to the Reserve.  I do note that his Rogers Drive Footpath continues around the corner onto Polzin Road and is also an existing footpath that students can use to access the Highfields Community facilities on foot.

Even though The Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland reserve is without a water source, plenty of beautiful dragonflies can be found within the reserve.  This one was seen this week right at the edge of the Nature Trail.

last but not least, the Entrance Signage at the Reserve.  You can now pick up a brochure when you visit the reserve to find out more about its history and the 10 points of interest on the nature trail.



This bird list was compiled this week by Pat and Kath from the Toowoomba Bird Observers Club during one visit to the Charles and Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve in Highfields.  I am very grateful for their time and knowledge in this area. Lets hope we can add more birds to this list!  
SPECIES    Charles & Motee Rogers Bushland Reserve
Pacific Baza
Black Kite
Common Bronzewing
Crested Pigeon
Yellow-tailed Black- Cockatoo
Galah
Little Corella
Sulphur-crested Cockatoo
Rainbow Lorikeet
Scaly-breasted Lorikeet
Musk Lorikeet
Little Lorikeet
Australian King-Parrot
Pale-headed Rosella
Common Koel
Channel-billed Cuckoo
Laughing Kookaburra
Sacred Kingfisher
Dollarbird
Superb Fairy-wren
Variegated Fairy-Wren
Striated Pardalote
White-browed Scrubwren
Brown Thornbill
Noisy Friarbird
Noisy Miner
Lewin’s Honeyeater
Yellow-faced Honeyeater
Golden Whistler
Grey Shrike-thrush
Grey Fantail
Rufous Fantail
Black-faced Cuckoo-shrike
Olive-backed Oriole
Figbird
Grey Butcherbird
Pied Currawong
Torresian Crow
Silvereye
Common Myna


Please sign the petition:  https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/mayor-paul-antonio-preserve-charles-motee-rogers-bushland-reserve-at-highfields

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