2021 Coastcare Award – NSW

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Phil Heaton & Budgewoi Beach Dunecare

“Through activities including installing stabilising fences, access ways and raised walkways, weed removal, and planting native trees and shrubs, we have been able to overturn decades of degradation and restore ecologically endangered communities here in Budgewoi.” Phil Heaton, NSW Coastcare Award Finalist.

Commencing coastal rehabilitation works along Budgewoi Beach in 1995, Budgewoi Beach Dunecare has been instrumental in successfully implementing innovative restoration techniques along 2km of the Budgewoi coastline, improving biodiversity and overturning decades of dune degradation. They have also partnered with primary, secondary and tertiary education institutions, fostering a passion for coastcare in the local community and inspiring future generations.

Led by lifelong landcarer Phil Heaton, BBDC’s small group of volunteers have transformed what was once a degraded weed infested, sand mined wasteland into a balanced coastal ecosystem.

To support their work, BBDC maintain a propagation igloo fitted with an automatic watering system that can house over 5,000 tube stock of resilient, locally indigenous plants. This has resulted in BBDC having propagated over 90% of their own plantings including Banksia, Bangalay and Coast Wattle. Their spectacular planting success has led to a significant increase in local biodiversity, with echidnas, wallabies and numerous vulnerable birds including the Powerful Owl, Diamond Firetail and the Black Chinned Honeyeater being sighted in the area.

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