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Bendigo celebrates being a good 'bushland neighbour'

Saturday 26 November 2016

Media release

Bendigo really is the city surrounded by the bush, but how do we make sure we're good neighbours to the wonderful wildlife and native plants that call it home?

Bendigo residents now have an opportunity to create better relationships with their 'bushland neighbours' through a new book - Living Next to Nature, Being a Good Neighbour to Bendigo's Bushland - and a website www.bendigonature.org.

Today the Victorian National Parks Association joins the people of Bendigo and local community groups to celebrate the launch of the new book.

Celebrations at the much-loved No7 Park, 2-4pm, will include bird watching walks, nature walks and a nature sketching workshop with author/illustrator Trace Balla. Copies of the book will be given away.

The Victorian National Parks Association's Caitlin Griffith said the book and website are filled with tips on how to be a good neighbour to the fabulous bushland and wildlife that surrounds Bendigo.

"The book outlines how being a good bushland neighbour can be as simple as ensuring cats are kept in at night, creating a habitat garden to attract butterflies and being water wise in the home," she said.

The book is also a great resource for learning about places to visit and how to join other people enjoying being part of Bendigo's nature.

"Improving our relationship with our neighbours involves spending time with them, this goes for nature too. Spending time in nature helps us learn more about what a great neighbour our bushland really is and how we can look after it," Ms Griffith said.

The City of Greater Bendigo's Anthony Sheean said Bendigo is lucky to be surrounded by many beautiful parks, bushland reserves, state and national parks.

"Ironbark trees and spectacular wildflower displays are iconic parts of the forests and an important part of our cultural identity. The forests are home to a rich diversity of birds, mammals and reptiles, including the Red-capped Robin, Echidna, kangaroo, Tuan, Blue-tongued Lizard and Galah."

A range of local groups were involved in creating the book, including Nicole Howie from North Bendigo Landcare Group.

"Coming together with other Bendigo-based nature conservation groups really helped us think about ways to share the importance and simplicity of being a good neighbour to Bendigo's bushland," she said.

"The end result has been this book, which can be used to help old and new residents look after our bushland neighbours."