RAINFOREST: Page MP Kevin Hogan with members of the Nimbin Environment Centre at the announcement of the federal government grant.
RAINFOREST: Page MP Kevin Hogan with members of the Nimbin Environment Centre at the announcement of the federal government grant.

’SERIOUS THREAT’: Work under way to protect local rainforest

NEW funding for the Mulgum Creek rainforest restoration project will help to protect the popular rainforest area.

The $10,000 grant is set to help the Nimbin Environment Centre remove invasive weeds from the area.

The weeds are mostly located in the upper reaches of Mulgum Creek and include seeded banana, giant devil fig, privet and Madeira vine.

Page MP Kevin Hogan explained the weeds pose a significant threat to the local ecosystem in the Mulgum Creek rainforest.

“Environmental weeds are a serious threat to the health of our waterways,” Mr Hogan said.

According to the Department of Primary Industries, if weeds impact an ecosystems waterway it can have flow on effects such as increasing erosion, impeding water flow and displacing natural vegetation.

Mr Hogan said the grant will help improve the area and fund the Nimbin Enviroment Centre’s removal efforts.

“The Mulgum Creek Rainforest Restoration Project will combat invasive weed species on the upper reaches of Mulgum Creek,” Mr Hogan said.

“They will drill and poison mature woody weed species and volunteers will hand weed seedlings,” Mr Hogan said.

“Management of these exotic species will help native plants and animals,” Mr Hogan said.

Seeded banana, which has been found naturalising in the Lismore region, is similar in appearance to edible banana but the fruit it produces is inedible Giant devil fig can grow into small shrub or a tiny tree with some giant devil figs ranging up to four metres in size.

Madeira vine is native to South America, however, in recent years, the weed has been found in Northern NSW rainforests such as Mulgum Creek rainforest.