A crowd of people walking through the bushland at the Yea wetlands event.

Partnering with Scripture Union

Project: Partnering with Scripture Union

Subject: education

Location: Victoria

Since 2021, A Rocha Australia and Scripture Union in Victoria have been running WildLife day camps – days for all ages to explore God’s creation, connect with God in his creation and learn how we can care for God’s world and steward it well. 

A crowd of people walking through the bushland at the Yea wetlands event.

Together we have learned about the snakes, birds and aquatic life at Yea Wetlands, had a ‘behind the scenes’ tour of Werribee Open Range Zoo and explored urban wildlife and sustainability at the CERES Environment Park in East Brunswick. 

Photos of kids drawing at a table and the crowd in the bushland near Yea wetlands
Photos of a tour guide talking to people at Werribee Open Range Zoo
Photos of a vegetable garden, a group of people sitting in a seminar, and a garden talk at the CERES Environment Park in East Brunswick

We look forward to future WildLife events exploring different habitats and offering the opportunity to slow down, reflect on God’s faithful love for his world and consider what a faith-filled response could look like in our daily contexts. 

A panoramic photo of the wetlands at Hart Road

Hart Road Wetlands

Project: Hart Road Wetlands

Subject: research, conservation, education

Location: Hart Road Wetlands, Aldinga, SA

Traditional lands of the Kaurna people 

The Hart Road Wetlands project south of Adelaide in South Australia began in 2020 in a reserve owned and managed by the City of Onkaparinga council.

A panoramic photo of the wetlands at Hart Road

Situated on a coastal plain behind Aldinga Beach, this system of artificial wetlands treats urban stormwater but was also designed to provide habitat for wildlife. Public walking paths traverse the reserve and Aldinga Scrub Conservation Park is adjacent.

Activities have involved local residents and others connected with A Rocha Australia in South Australia. 

Key outcomes so far:

  • weed and rubbish removal
  • revegetation with indigenous plant species
  • standardised seasonal bird surveys (BirdLife Australia 2.0 ha 20 min method)
  • outdoor education lessons with local Christian college classes 
  • support of local community events, including traditional reed weaving 

Results show 79 bird species recorded over three years of surveys and an emerging picture of bird usage of different habitats across the wetlands. Species of ornithological interest include Peregrine Falcon Falco peregrinus, Lewin’s Rail Lewinia pectoralis, Baillon’s Crake Zapornia pusilla, Spotless Crake Zapornia tabuensis, and Crescent Honeyeater Phylidonyris pyrrhopterus.

Hart Rd Wetlands_Three years of bird surveys report_2022

Comparison of bald wetlands following construction, 2008 with thick reed establishment, 2020

Following construction: 2008

Thick habitat establishment: 2020

Education events, different wetland habitats and rubbish removal event
Musk duck Biziura lobata, Purple Swamphen Porphyrio porphyrio with chicks, White-faced Heron Egretta novaehollandiae, Eurasian Coot Fulica atra with chicks
Traditional basket weaving with wetland reeds, Clean up Australia day event, local kindergarten visit

Further habitat restoration activities and more visitor facilities, such as bird hides and signage, are hoped for in the future.

Project in partnership with:

City of Onkaparinga Council logo