On Sunday, REF Inc hosted a Marine Turtles Stranding Workshop for volunteers from around South-East Queensland. Julia Zivanovic from the Sea Turtle Foundation facilitated the workshop with assistance from Holly West (Turtles in Trouble Rescue) and DES Moreton Bay rangers, Natalie Sands and Owen. Presenters drew on their expertise and provided the participants with information on the monitoring program, StrandNet as well as information on marine turtles and tips for volunteers on rescuing a turtle to collecting valuable information on marine strandings used by DES to manage and mitigate the risks to our endangered marine turtles. There were also some excellent learning activities including team work on local turtle stranding scenarios and practice at harnessing a turtle rescue and collecting accurate data for use by managers and researchers. Participants included volunteers from Redlands Wildlife Ambulance, BIEPA and REF Inc as well as staff from the Moreton Bay Regional Council. A special thank you to some of our local volunteers from REF's "Turtles of Moreton Bay" including Susie Bedford, Mike Croft, Zyanna Dwyer, Phil Plant and Sylvianne Quin-Wright.
4th March 2023
Native Plants Queensland and the President of the Pine Rivers Branch, Lawrie Smith hired the Deception Bay Hub in order to host a "gathering". Attended by over 50 members of the organisation, they enjoyed updates on the organisation in Queensland. Some great learning resources were provided by the organisers along with presentations provided by Lawrie on the history of the Deception Bay and surrounds, Bob Crudgington on the ecology and flora and fauna of the Moreton Bay wetlands and Bob Bannon on native plants associated with the local region. Many patrons also went on a shoreline walk and a mangrove tour. A successful and engaging day and Lawrie thanked all including members of REF:
"Thank you for everything you did to make today's event so successful. Your venue is perfect for an event like today. Many of our members said how much they enjoyed finding Deception Bay for the first time. We really appreciate your involvement, which made the day proceed so smoothly."
2nd February 2023
Healthy land and Water hosted a "World Wetland Day" at the Deception Bay Environmental hub. Extremely warm conditions and over 80 participants certainly tested the new facility. Highlights of the day included "Welcome to Country" by Uncle Mick Douglas representing the traditional owners of the land, the Gubbi Gubbi. He also provided background information on the indigenous history of the lands as well as some insights into how they "Care for Country". During the day over 15 presentations were made covering the work of the Ramsar Network and the projects conducted by researchers and various community groups and agencies. From fish in the mangroves to shellfish restoration, shorebirds, habitat restoration and managing soil erosion in pineapple plantations, there was valuable information for everybody. Thanks again to Healthy Land and Water and the National Landcare Program for supporting all this important work.
18th January 2023
Kicking off the new year with REF's first event of 2023, The Turtles of Moreton Bay Information night. Everyone learnt about the battle of the Blood Fluke parasite that's infecting our sea turtles, conservation, rehabilitation programs, the importance of protecting our beaches for laying turtles and so much more. Thank you again to our guest speakers Dylan Richard Corner (Ph D researcher at UQ), Diane Oxenford from BIEPA’s and Susie Bedford “Turtle Program at Ningaloo”. We want to express a special thanks to 10 year old Eden Bielby who helped raise money for our turtle rescue program! Her passion is truly inspiring and great to see the younger members of our community jumping in to help spread awareness. With over 40 people attending the evening, they are looking forward to the next "environmental information night.
7th December 2022
The Moreton Bay Regional Council hosted an end of year workshop for "Land for Wildlife" at the Deception Bay Environmental Hub. Over 30 staff from the councils of South-East Queensland attended the event to review their practices and the work carried out during the year. It was also an opportunity for many of them to check out the new facility and the amazing surrounds including Deception Bay itself.
16th November 2022: Koala Crusaders 10th Anniversary
The Queensland Koala Crusaders celebrated their 10th Anniversary at the Deception Bay Hub. What an achievement for this community organisation, which has been a "voice for the koala" through advocacy and projects, which enhance the quality of koala habitat. A dedicated team of volunteers put the evening program together including guest speakers and presentations, catering and entertainment to celebrate the people and the conservation of our koalas.
4th November 2022: Official opening
On Friday 4th November, REF held an official opening for the new hub and with over 60 guests the new facility was put to the test! Apart from a chance for members and partners to celebrate the opening of the new facility, the evening provided an opportunity for us to acknowledge the ongoing work of REF's volunteers over the past 16 years as well as provide a chance to thank our many partners including the Moreton Bay Regional Council and other community groups and organisations including the Moreton Bay Foundation, Pine Rivers Catchment Association, Healthy Land and Water, Birds Queensland and our friends at Rotary. There were also representatives from our koala community including the Queensland Koala Crusaders and Moreton Bay Koala Rescue.
25th October 2022: Chamber of Commerce meeting
The Redcliffe Chamber of Commerce conducted a meeting at the Deception Bay Environmental Hub providing opportunities for local businesses to network with other business owners and find out the latest information from the Moreton Bay Regional Council. Mayor, Peter Flannery providing some insights into the development of the Deception Bay Facility from its inception 10 years ago to the construction of the facility (stage one). Mayor Flanery also discussed the advantages of our polycentric region with various hubs becoming a City Council in order to get better access to State and Federal Funding. He also provided an overview of some of the strategies the Council had in place to support small businesses across the region as well as conducting a "Q & A" with attendees. Topics included "Moreton Money" and an innovative new analysis tool for businesses "Ask Morty".
A big thank you to the Chamber of Commerce for hiring the facility as well as the Moreton Bay Regional Council for supporting our new community endeavour. It was a great opportunity to see the facilities in use.
16th October 2022: Bushcare Day
On Sunday morning over 20 volunteers turned up at the Deception Bay Environmental Hub, in order to tackle some of the weeds adjacent to the site. Led by Jasper Johnson we targeted weeds in the adjacent wetlands including broad-leafed pepper, asparagus fern, mile-a-minute and mother of millions and umbrella trees. The removal or treatment of invasive weeds will improve the quality of the wetland environment and assist the local flora and fauna living in the buffer zone of Deception Bay. A big thank you to all our volunteers and the Moreton Bay Regional Council.
25th September 2022: REF Meet our neighbours' day
On Sunday the 25th of September, REF invited a number of our local residents to check out the progress in fitting out the hub. It was a successful morning with some great discussions and exchanges of ideas. The next public event will be a Bushcare day on the 16th of October 2022, when we will be targeting some of the weeds in the adjacent area to the hub. It will also be another chance to engage with our local community over a cup of tea.
12th August 2022: The Deception Bay Environmental Hub has officially been handed over to the Redcliffe Environmental Forum Inc.
L to R: Mayor Peter Flannery, Councillor Sandra Ruck, State MP Chris Whiting
On the 12th August 2022, the Redcliffe Environmental Forum Inc commenced a lease with the Moreton Bay Regional Council covering the building including a meeting place, a canteen and a deck area overlooking the shores of Deception Bay. REF would especially like to acknowledge the work of Mayor Peter Flannery and Chris Whiting MP who commenced working on this project over ten years ago. REF would also like to thank the work of local Councillor Sandra Ruck and the staff of the Moreton Bay Regional Council for completing the project.
REF to commence fit-out of facility
REF Inc will commence the fitout of the building including the provision of furniture for the meeting place and provide audio-visual equipment for environmental workshops, seminars and information events. REF Inc will also start to develop interpretative resources highlighting the local environment, flora and fauna as well as the history and culture of Deception Bay and the Moreton Bay Region. The canteen will also be fitted out to allow for catering at events and meetings. There are exciting times ahead for REF Inc, our members and partners and the wonderful community at Deception Bay and the Moreton Bay Region. As we fitout the facility, we will endeavour to keep people updated on progress via this website and through our REF social media platforms including our Facebook Page at Redcliffe Environmental Forum | Facebook
.The Redcliffe Environmental Forum acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country in and around Moreton Bay and the Redcliffe Peninsula, and their continuing connection to land, sea and community. It pays respect to them and their cultures, and to Elders both past, present and emerging..