Green Army goes bush bashing in the Hawkesbury to clean up habitats

Team members (not in order) Dana Pank, Rowan Lloyd, William Ingram, Fergus Loader, Toby Walker, Christina Senn, Ruby Everett and co-ordinator Graham Stirling.

Team members (not in order) Dana Pank, Rowan Lloyd, William Ingram, Fergus Loader, Toby Walker, Christina Senn, Ruby Everett and co-ordinator Graham Stirling.

Are you a Hawkesbury spotted tail quoll or koala? There is a group of fluoro-clad protectors out cleaning up your homes as we speak.

The latest ‘magnificent seven’ Green Army recruits are working around Windsor Downs Reserve and South Creek to weed out invasive plants and fix your habitat for you due to your threatened species status.

The seven young people are aged between 17 and 24 and will spend the next six months working four days a week on various sites along and near the Hawkesbury River.

Greater Sydney Senior Land Services officer Linda Hanlon said the team would focus on areas such as Rickabys and South creeks in the river catchment.

“The team will work to reduce the impact of weeds and other invasive species and improve the condition of key landscapes such as Windsor Downs Reserve,” Ms Hanlon said.

“These activities will lead to the improvement of habitat quality for a range of threatened plant and animal species including the spotted tail quoll and the local koala population.”

The program aims to not only help the environment but give young people work experience, while being paid a small amount – between $600 and $990 a fortnight depending on age and education.

It gives them real world experience of sticking to work plans, meeting deadlines, working as a team and establishing a strong work ethic, the team’s project manager Graham Stirling said. 

Agnes Banks resident Christina Senn, 19, said the experience had already paid off for her. “I want to work in environmental conservation one day and I’ve already learnt so much after just one week,” she said. “Hands-on experience is the best way to increase your skills.” 

Ruby Everett, 23, plans to study an outdoor education course after graduating from the Green Army. “It’s a great team and I can already name a few native species I couldn’t before,” she said.

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