Saturday - 26 January 2008
PLEG's Secretary, Daryl Akers, was the recipient of a Melton Shire Community Achievement Awards 2008 (Achiever Award 25 - 69) on Saturday 26th January. This award recognises the outstanding achievements and contributions of local groups and residents in Melton Shire.
It is a recognition of his untiring and freely given time in facilitating a range of local environment actions, at a personal level and as Secretary of Pinkerton Landcare and Environment Group and President of Melton Environment Group.He is also very active in Melbourne Water's Water Watch program.
Melton Shire Mayor Cr Justin Mammarella congratulated the award winners who were judged by an independent panel and had their awards presented at the Australia Day 2008 celebrations on 26 January at the Willows Historical Park in Reserve Road, Melton.
"Congratulations to our winners, who are inspiring examples of the great work being done in our community and give us all a reason to feel proud," said Cr Mammarella.
"It's fantastic to see such a range of people of different ages and backgrounds carrying out positive work in diverse areas of our community, from activities to benefit both our youth and senior communities through to action to benefit our local environment.
Daryl has excellent field naturalist skills and is often referred to by other environment groups such as Friends of Toolern Creek for identification of frogs, snakes, birds and plants.
Melton Environment Group
Daryl Akers has been part of the Melton Environment Group for six years and has been president for the past three years.
Daryl produces the monthly group newsletter, featuring his observations on the flora and fauna of Melton at creeks, reserves and parks.
These observations are made by Daryl on his regular walks and drives around Melton noting the birds, plants, frogs and animals around the creeks, environmental reserves and parks.
Under Daryl's leadership, the group has been engaged in several projects including:
- Planting events and litter clean-ups at Little Blind Creek and Brooklyn Road
- Clean Up Australia Day
- Teaching at schools on the local environment (Biodiversity and planting at Melton Christian College (6 sessions), Frog awareness and visit to amphibian centre with Melton Secondary College, Duck box location with students from Caroline Springs College)
- Planting at Navan Park
- Planting with Church of the latter day Saints at Arnold's Creek
- Planting with School group at Brooklyn Road
- Planting with Community at Brooklyn Road
Melton Environment Group has also taken on Frog watch for the first time this year and Daryl has lead several "frog forays" often in cold and bleak conditions.
In 2006 Daryl became secretary of Pinkerton Landcare and Environment Group (PLEG) he has:
- Contributes to the ongoing restoration of the endangered native grasslands of Mulla Mulla Grasslands (Bushs Paddock) and Pinkerton Forest, activities include seed collection, propagation of local plant species, weed control, planting, monitoring, rabbit proof fencing and watering
- Regularly contributes to PLEG web page
- Contributes towards the implementation of the Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority and Envirofund Grants for restoration of the Werribee River
- Assists with quarterly bird surveys with the Bird Observer Club of Australia
- Hosts a range of individuals and organisations interested in the wildlife in Pinkerton Forest and Mulla Mulla Grasslands (Bushs Paddock), including Ecology Australia and the Indigenous Flora and Fauna Assocation
- Assists with Community Service days by Mowbray College which included planting, mulching, watering, weed control and collecting rubbish from the banks of the Werribee River.
- Assisted students from Melton Christian College planting, mulching and watering at the Werribee River
- Assisted with the application for an Enviround Grant which has been awarded to the group for restoration of native grasslands, including weed control on Mr Cottrell.