Join us in Goongerah over the Queen's birthday weekend for the seventh GECO citizen science forest survey camp.
Learn from the dedicated and passionate ecologists and activists at GECO whose citizen science campaign is saving forests and habitat from logging.
You'll gain skills to put into practice and get involved in the GECO citizen science campaign.
This event is held on the lands of the Gunnaikurnai, Bidwell and Monaro people who never ceded sovereignty. We acknowledge their custodianship of these forests and pay respect to their elders past and present.
Workshops and practical sessions will focus on forest ecology, threatened species, survey techniques, remote fauna cameras, nocturnal spotlighting, Owl surveys, Frog surveys and rainforest identification, forest carbon accounting and more.
Data we collect on the camps is compiled into survey reports that are submitted to the Victorian government to ensure that logging operations are not in breach of the law and threatened species and rare forest types are protected.
This is family friendly event and children of all ages are more than welcome to attend.
The camp will be based opposite the Goongerah community hall,
6933 Bonang Road. Goongerah
The GECO kitchen tent will be set up with gas stoves, and basic kitchen gear for all to use each the morning.
Drinking water for filling up your own containers and toilet facilitates are available on site.
We'll use the community hall over the road to hold presentations and eat dinner.
Bring your own camping gear and food for breakfast and lunch.
We will provide vegetarian and vegan dinners on Friday, Saturday and Sunday night for $5 a plate.
Please do not bring your dog or pets.
- Wet Weather gear
- Warm Clothing
- Camping gear - tent/swag/tarp
- Torch (head torch)
- Solid footwear for walking in the bush
- Water bottles/ container
(very flexible and likely to change)
Introduction to mammal spotlighting and frogging (we expect people will arrive throughout the evening on Friday so we don't have much planned for Friday night, just these two basic introductory activities for those who have already arrived)
9AM- Welcome, Camp talk and run through program
9:30AM- Groups split for old growth forest walks, the walks will provide opportunities to learn about the native vegetation, how to set up remote fauna cameras, rainforest and habitat identification. Walks led by GECO campaigners.
5pm - Return to camp with short frogging activity on the way back
6:30pm - Presentations and Dinner:
East Gippy's forests & the GECO campaign
Ecology of the Greater glider and Potoroo
Remote fauna cameras
Sunday: Group will split up in two or three groups depending on numbers.
9:30AM - Depart for Errinundra plateau for walks and surveys.
- Forest carbon accounting, measuring lots of trees! (group A)
- Remote fauna camera set ups (group B)
- Habitat mapping (group B)
Both groups will stay out after dark and conduct mammal spotlighting surveys. Bring lots of snacks and warm clothes. The plateau is 1000m above sea level and is likely to be very cold.
5:30pm - Mammal spotlighting for greater gliders and other arboreal mammals and large forest owls.
7:30pm - Return to Goongerah
8:30pm - late dinner and films.
The Kuark experience (dependent on road conditions, local rainforest walks available as back up option)
We'll visit the iconic Kuark forest for old growth and rainforest walks, awesome views to the coast and a visit to Kuark falls, a three tiered waterfall on the Hugg river.
From Kuark the Princess highway is just 30 mins drive. So people can leave from Kuark to go to the highway and return to Melbourne or Sydney.
All roads we will use are 2wd and suitable for all cars.
Directions From Melbourne:
Drive to Orbost on the Princess highway. From Orbost head north on the Bonang rd for 70kms to Goongerah.
The camp is in the paddock on the opposite side of the road from Goongerah community hall, 6933 Bonang Road, Goongerah.
The Telstra phone box at the community hall can be viewed on google maps.
Directions from Sydney:
Drive to Canberra and then get on the B23 highway to Cooma and then onto Bombala. A few kms south of Bombala turn right onto the Delegate rd. Drive through Delegate and cross the border into Victoria where the Delegate road becomes the Bonang rd. Continue south on the Bonang road to Goongerah. Look for the phone box at the hall on your right.
There is no fuel in Goongerah. Make sure you fill up cars in Orbost if you are coming from Melbourne, or in Bombala or Delegate if coming from Sydney. You will need enough fuel to drive to survey sites (all roads are 2wd) and save enough to leave. Filling up your tank at the last available fuel on the way to Goongerah should leave with more than enough.
Goongerah is a remote environment; there are no shops here. Please come prepared with food and fuel and try to be as self sufficient as possible.
Check out what people who have attended these camps have been saying about their experience.
Tania attended the camp in January 2016 and had this to say
“Citizen science was a fabulous week. GECO are a passionate, intelligent, hardworking bunch that is doing so much incredible work to protect the stunning old growth/rainforests of East Gippsland. Anyone with a love of our forests would get down there for a workshop - you will learn a heap and meet a bunch of like minded people.”
Ziana attended in March 2016 and had this to say.
"Still totally buzzing after the incredible weekend! Was so special to be surrounded by you all amongst that breathtaking forest... Thank you so much! "