A Place To Stock Up On Food For Wildlife
The Possum Pantry at KDV Sport at Carrara on the Gold Coast is a project that is in planning stage.
It takes a lot of time, energy and resources for volunteer wildlife carers to find suitable fodder for their wlldlife in care. The Possum Pantry hopes to add to the growing facilities to assist them to ensure we can rehabilitate wildlife and be able to then return them back to the wild.
KDV Sport is Queensland’s largest, split level golf driving range. The facility includes a 9 hole golf course, tennis courts, fitness club, function rooms & restaurant.
We were approached by the maintenance manager, Andrew Glen, after reading the Lyfe Magazine article about our Koalas On The Green pilot project at Arundel Hills Country Club.
Gold Course Going Green
For the past 3 years Andrew has completely transformed the maintenance and health of the grounds by going completely organic.
By inoculating the soil with bacteria, fungi and other microrganisms he has witnessed a gradual natural balance returning with major benefits all round from:
• a safe and chemical-free environment for staff, customers and wildlife alike.
• the return of wildlife to the grounds.
• reduced maintenance costs as the fungi balance in the soil has suppressed annual weeds.
• the healthy biota in the soil has seen the grassed areas develop deep roots and so water usage has reduced dramatically.
• less input costs in regards to fertilisers as with a healthy soil biota grass clippings are left on the greens to be quickly broken down and recycled.
• less flood damage after events as mulched garden beds which are knitted together with fungal mycelium prevent mulch from floating away.
The Possum Pantry
Andrew approached us to see if we would like to create a similar concept as the Koalas On The Green program at KDV Sport.
After visiting the site and meeting Andrew, we discussed volunteer wildlife community needs and one of those needs was to have a safe and convenient facility to harvest native leaf, blossoms, and fruit for native animals in care including koalas, possums, gliders and nectar-feeding birds.
We also saw this project as an extension of the incredible work that Andrew and his team has done to transform the property to a totally organic regime.
Rather than planting rows of trees as in a traditional fodder farm, the concept for the Possum Pantry is to design plantings that have an aesthetic appeal providing habitat for local wildlife and at the same time beautifying the grounds.
Some areas will be planted with low thick shrubs providing habitat for small birds such as local fairy wrens and maintaining sight lines throughout the golf course. Other areas will consist of rainforest species in the out of play areas and along fence lines. Other areas some distance from the creek will be planted with native grasses and sedges.
All the plantings will consist of endemic (local) native plant species that possums, gliders, koalas, and nectar-feeding birds feed upon.
Creatively Connecting Private Landholders, business and Community For Biodiversity
By engaging the local community with this project as we move forward, we aim to forge closer ties between private landholders, business and local community.
The Green Standard
The goal of this project combined with the innovative organic maintenance work that Andrew has done is to create a new ‘Green Standard’ for golf courses moving into the future where golf courses can become part of the solution by providing clean healthy environments where both humans and wildlife can thrive.
This is to be the showpiece to inspire other golf courses to be good environmental stewards.