Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Dates for the Diary

See the CPPA Online Calendar for an up to date calendar of events

Ride2Work Day

Wed 12 Oct. A celebration of commuter riding in Australia

Chemical CleanOut

Sat 8 Oct, 9.00am – 3.30pm, Glendale TAFE

CPPA Committee meeting

Mon 10 Oct, 3:30-5:30, Progress Hall, 197 Skye Point Rd


Wed 19 Oct The Hub, 97 The Boulevarde 5-6.30pm

Wildlife Nest box Workshop

Sat 15 Oct 9am-noon, Progress Hall, 197 Skye Point Rd

Rathmines Catalina Festival

Sun 30 Oct 10am-3pm, Rathmines Park

Say Hi at our stall at the Toronto Spring Fair:

Sat 22 Oct 9am-3pm, Toronto Town

Vote now! Toronto picture competition

Mort de Magpie

As World Animal Day- October 4 comes and goes it is a time to reflect on our relationship with the non-human animals we share our community with.

Our fond relationship with the local birdlife was highlighted last month when several distressing calls were received about the numerous dead Magpies that were being found around Rofe Street and Stansfield Close, “at least 11 in the past 3 weeks”.

A local had taken a bird to the local vet, who identified poisoning as the problem, our local wildlife carer received a sick bird which was rehabilitated and released, then found dead. Two other reports from locals were received which prompted a bit of research as to the possible causes.

On the back of the Warnervale bird poisoning the first thought was someone is deliberately baiting the birds.But there was another possibility ‘Lawn Care syndrome’… poisoning by unknowing locals from readily available chemicals that are used to spruce up the lawn.

The Smithsonian Migratory Bird Centre states that in America about 67 million birds are killed annually due to pesticide ingestion.

The Risks from lawn care pesticides report produced by the US group Environment & Human health Inc. details the impacts of lawn care products and states “Some common lawn-care pesticides are toxic to birds (including 2,4-D and diazinon), while others kill the plants relied upon by insects, which in turn can reduce the available food supply for insectivorous birds.”

Diazinon, a popular, highly versatile general insecticide used to control soil and foliage insects as well as flies in many horticultural industries, in Australia, is under review and it has been found that it poses “an undue hazard to the safety of people and animals as these products could break down to produce highly toxic impurities”.

Dicamba is another pesticide that doesn’t look too good with it being neurotoxic in animals. Bindii contains Dicamba and MCPA – both are selective herbicides similar to 2,4-D and are ‘restricted use pesticides’ in US. Dicamba is said to cause wing drop, loss of controlled movements and weakness in birds.

Apart from the inherent toxicity of lawn treatment products another impacting factor is that the chemicals are often not used according to the instructions. Some home gardeners think more is better and are underestimating the lethal effects of these toxic chemicals, that end up persisting and poisoning the wildlife.

So before you reach to weed n feed or control Bidii & clover please read the label and be aware that your lawn care may be causing deaths in the local birds population or consider some non-toxic alternatives and strategies.

It is an offence under the EPA’s legislation to use pesticides in a manner that harms non-target animals. If you have any information that may assist the EPA with this incident contact the EPA on 131555 with the reference number C13261-2016.

P.S The EPA has just advised the CPPA that local dead birds have been collected and are being autopsied to determine what poisons have been used. It will take a couple of weeks for the results to be known

Roadside Verge Embankment Planting Guide

Have you ever wanted a biodiverse bank instead of a hard to mow hill? Thanks to the Threatened Species project and the skills of Nature’s Magic Garden Designs a landscape concept plan has been put together to guide and inspire the transition of those tricky verges and embankments into low maintenance habitat havens.

Designed with sight lines and slopes in mind there is a concept plan, an alternative plant list and information on the habitat benefits available for downloading 
on the Plants In Our Bigger Backyard tab  on the CPPA website .

What a spiffy sustainable Hall!

The $20,000 Community Building Partnership grant is bearing fruit. The 20 solar panels are on the roof as part of the SunCrowd bulk buy, the watertank is full and plumbed in and flushing toilets, the rusty roof has been replaced and we’ve acquired some newer chairs thanks to the Royal Motor Yacht Club. 

Only a few items left…a chair and table trolley and some more chairs. All these sustainable solutions will contribute to lowering the running costs on the hall and make it more user friendly. If you are a hall users you need to make sure the power is on to drive the pump to flush the toilet. Thanks to the NSW Government for making this all possible.

Neighbours noticing Nature

“Been hearing a bit of screeching this week (late Aug) coming from the forest patch behind Laycock St shops. Heard a pair of either Barn or Masked owls on dusk last night and then a single one tonight. I don't know which species is more likely in this location, or indeed if it could be another option. Whatever they are I hope they eat the neighbour's chihuahuas which don't seem to understand that not barking at every waking moment might be an option.”

Aussie Backyard Bird Count in National Bird Week 17-23 October

You can celebrate National Bird Week by getting involved in the Aussie Backyard Bird Count. All you need is 20 minutes, your favourite outdoor space, and some keen eyesight.

Simply record the birds you see on the Aussie Bird Count app or through the Submit a Count on the website. You’ll instantly see live statistics on the number of people taking part and the number of birds and species counted in your neighbourhood and the whole of Australia.

Not only will you get to know your feathered neighbours, but you’ll be contributing to a vital pool of information from across the nation that will help us see how Australian birds are faring.

You can complete as many counts as you like over the week – so get your friends and family together, head into the great outdoors or your backyard and start counting!

Coal Point chick hatched in a hollow

This is an exciting time of year for the Powerful Owls, when chicks start to emerge from the nest hollows! The local Powerful Owl pair have produced another white fluff-ball of a chick. It will gradually get more and more chevrons on its chest as it ages. Some lovely images by Paul van Gaal are on the Owls of Australia Facebook page.

From the Powerful Owl Project

Powerful by name, and powerful by nature - the Powerful Owl Ninox strenua is Australia’s largest owl with an impressive wingspan of 135cm. It occurs from eastern and south-eastern Australia (east of the Great Dividing Range), from south-eastern Queensland to South Australia, mostly in large continuous forest. Despite being classified as threatened in all Australian states across its range, Powerful Owls can survive within cities. They are found throughout the suburbs of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Lake Mac, particularly where bushland remnants are close by. However, increasing urbanisation is likely to impact the long-term persistence of the Powerful Owl.

Despite their impressive size, little is known about the ecology of Powerful Owls, particularly those living in cities. Since 2011, the Powerful Owl Project, with the aid of citizen scientists, has collected critical data on the Powerful Owl population.The information gained from this study is used to inform the conservation status of the Powerful Owl, and help drive management recommendations for their continued survival in urban areas.

You can register to be a citizen scientist with the project through Birdlife Australia.

You can help these birds by:
• Having some trees in your yard for them to use
• Avoiding rat and mouse baits - eating a poisoned mouse can be deadly for these birds. Instead use traps to rid your house of these pests
• Installing a nest box. You can build your own using the dimensions outlined here.



The Annual General Meeting of TASNG will be on Wednesday 19 October 2016 at 5pm at the Hub, 97 The Boulevarde. The monthly meeting will follow the AGM. All positions will be declared vacant and new committee members are very welcome indeed.

If you’d like to be involved in local projects that aim to make our community more sustainable the TASNG crew could be for you. The focus areas at the moment are Pedestrian & Cycleways, Waste and Landcare.

Nominations for committee positions should ideally reach the Secretary at least one week prior to the meeting date.

Contact Lois The TASNG Secretary for a nomination form or more information on 49595863 or lois.simpson@aapt.net.au

Slow down you move to fast

(thank you Simon & Garfunkel)

Slow down, you move too fast
You got to make this lifetime last,
Stop speeding through the 50 zones,
Looking for fun? but you’re being’ goosey!
Bad da da da da da da, bein’ goosey.

Hello, signpost, what ’cha knowin’?
50k’s is how fast to be goin’!
Can’t they read the signs dear me?
Doot-in doo-doo, they’re bein’ goosey
Bad da da da da da, bein’ goosey

I got no where to walk
no footpaths on streets
I’m scared when you're speeding it makes my heart beat
Let the speeding time stop lift the pedals off feet
Life, I love you
Please don’t be goosey.

Have you signed the petition to protect my home?

The local Squirrel Glider population needs relatives that are close by to ensure the broader population remains diverse and healthy. Some of the closest and connected bushland is just a glide or two away at Awaba and the LT Sustainable Neighbourhood group are trying to get the area formally recognized as a Conservation Area. There's an online petition to sign to show your support for this project.

DA of the DAy

Is this the future of the Jarrett to Ambrose Street area?

22 Brighton Avenue- DA 1543/2013.

A DA that was granted approval in 2013 has been resubmitted with an increase in villa density from 9 to 10 units.

Whilst it may seem like a ‘small’ adjustment it epitomizes the development attitude that every skerrick of land must be consumed by hard surfaces and height maximized to accommodate the new view.

Double-storey dwellings impact on privacy, amenity, view corridors and vegetation cover. Increased density means increased overland water flow, increased run-off rates into the lake and more vehicle movements on and off the site.

This development along with the adjacent 27 units at 151 Excelsior Parade side will be the first of the ‘Up & Overs’ spanning Brighton Avenue to Excelsior Parade.

Development enthusiasm to maximize profit margins at the expense of community aesthetic and long-term resident’s lifestyle is a poor precedent for increasing urban density.

Please make a submission on DA 1543/2013 to LMCC on the impact of the increased density of this development in this area.

The notification period is currently 6/10/16. The CPPA is requesting an extension for the community to comment and there is a draft letter available here on the CPPA website.

DA upDAte

DA/1243/2016 - 2 Brighton Ave.Demolition, Multi Dwelling Housing (19 Units) and Lot Consolidation (2 Into 1 Lots)

The 133 community submissions opposing DA1243/2016 was a testament to the value our community has for the scenic amenity and local vegetation that provides not only a wonderful backdrop to those near and far but also our local sense of place.

LMCC has undertaken a formal preliminary assessment of the DA and expands on many of the concerns that we, as a community expressed. The 11 page document is available online for your convenience.

The following is LMCC’s concluding remarks.
“In summary, Council staff do not support the proposed development in its current form due to substantial departures from DCP 2014. These departures are likely to have significant adverse impact on the amenity of adjoining residents and the future occupants of the units. Significant tree loss also results in a reduction in scenic amenity. The applicant is invited to bring forward a revised concept at the pre-lodgement stage, which addresses the above concerns. A revised concept should be supported by a detailed site analysis plan which clearly demonstrates the basis of the proposal. It is strongly recommended that the applicant reconsider site planning to adequately address the visual impact issues with strong consideration for retention of continuous canopy vegetation to conserve scenic amenity to the Toronto Bay area”.

There are two options available for the developer, submit the proposal on the understanding it will be recommended for refusal or withdraw the application

If you have time please contact the new Councillors so they are aware of the community concern about this development.Their contacts details are here.

DA’s In Play

The list below has been abridged from Lake Macquarie City Council’s Application Tracking system. It has been compiled to support community understanding of developments in our area. Please consult LMCC’s website for details and a complete listing. New listings were from the period 1/8/16 to 2/10/16

  • 58 Amelia Street :Dwelling Additions/Alterations . Approved
  • 2 Brighton Avenue: Demolition Structures, 2 into 1 lots & 19 Dwellings (multi dwelling houses).Under Assessment
  • 22 Brighton Avenue: Multiple Dwelling Housing, Subdivision and Demolition - Amendment To Consent: On Notification/Advertising
  • 27 Brighton Avenue: Dwelling House (Additions and Alterations): On Notification/Advertising
  • 93A Brighton Avenue: Demolition of Existing Structures, Dwelling House, Swimming Pool with Associated Safety Barriers and Garaging: Awaiting Information requested
  • 123 Brighton Avenue: Dwelling Alterations and Additions:Under Assessment
  • 43 Coal Point Road: Dwelling House: Awaiting Information requested
  • 144 Coal Point Road: Retaining Wall: Scanning of Application Documents
  • 215 Coal Point Road.Detached Garage: On Notification/Advertising
  • 242 Coal Point Road: Dwelling House and Swimming Pool with Associated Safety Barriers: On Notification/Advertising
  • 29 Hampton Street: Dwelling House: Initial Assessment
  • 20 Jarrett Street: Dwelling Additions & Swimming Pool with Associated Safety Barriers: Approved
  • 65 Jarrett Street: Secondary Dwelling: Approved
  • 1/17 Laycock Street: Child Care Centre: Awaiting Information requested
  • 14 Lorron Close: Dwelling House & Retaining Walls: Approved
  • 30 Mount Waring Road : Subdivision Works - Acces, Stormwater, APZ and Retaining Wall: Awaiting Information Requested
  • 106 Skye Point Road: Dwelling Alterations and Additions and Pool with Associated Safety Barriers. On notification
  • 111 Skye Point Road: Dwelling Addition and Carport: Lodged
  • 176 Skye Point Road: Dwelling House: Under Assessment
  • 184 Skye Point Road: Dwelling Alterations and Additions (Internal), Carport and Deck Extension- Approved
  • 202 Skye Point Road: Alterations/Additions to Boatshed: Refused
  • 206 Skye Point Road: Garage. Awaiting Information requested
  • 264 Skye Point Road: Dwelling House Alterations & Additions - Approved
  • 388 Skye Point Road: Dwelling Alterations and Additions: Approved.