Wooditjup Bilya festival returns

Nature Conservation Margaret River Region’s free festival dedicated to the Margaret River is returning at the end of the month, with everyone urged to get involved.

Wooditjup Bilya Community Connections will be held at Rotary Park from 10am-2pm on Sunday, October 30 to connect with the natural and cultural values of the Margaret River. There will be free guided walks, information and food stalls, entertainment and community art.

Last year’s event was a huge success with hundreds of people turning out to learn more about the Margaret River and its flora, fauna and cultural values.

The program includes guided walks including a birdwatching walk at 11am with Christine Wilder from the Cape to Cape Bird Group (bring your binoculars!) and a wildflower walk at 1pm with Rod Cary from Geographe Community Landcare Nursery. Plus stalls with displays and information from Nature Conservation Margaret River Region, Owl Friendly Margaret River, Great Southern Reef, FAWNA, Nannas for Native Forests leaf stitching, Geographe Community Landcare Nursery, Cape to Cape Bird Group and the Water Corporation.

There’s also live music, face painting, roving Discover Deadly staff with snakes from 10.30am-12.30pm, and a community environmental art project with artist Tania Davey.

In the evening there is a free, guided Western Ringtail possum night stalk. See the www.natureconservation.com.au homepage to see the flyer and to register to reserve your spot.

Ringtail Tally“Last year’s event was lots of fun and this year it’ll be bigger and better, celebrating the cultural and environmental values of this important waterway,” said NCMRR event organiser Mandy Edwards. “The river is an integral part of our town and Wadandi connections to Wooditjup Bilya date back at least 48,000 years. There is a diversity of habitats that are home to a number of freshwater fish, the threatened Margaret River burrowing crayfish, pouched lamprey, Western Ringtail possum, three species of black cockatoo, brush-tailed phascogale and rakali or native water rat, to name just a few.

“The river provides so much for us all to enjoy – a place to walk or ride a bike, bird watch, hunt for wildflowers or simply a place to sit and contemplate. Wooditjup Bilya Community Connections brings us together to celebrate the tangible and intangible benefits of this incredible asset to the Margaret River region, to learn more about the flora and fauna that habit the area on guided walks by local experts, and to enjoy some family-friendly activities and free music and entertainment.”

See www.natureconservation.org.au for more details and to reserve your spot on guided walks, because numbers are limited. On guided walks, children must be accompanied by an adult and all participants must wear covered shoes, please also bring a water bottle, sun protection and a rain coat depending on weather.

Thanks to the Shire of Augusta-Margaret River for event funding through its Community Development and Events Grant.