Public Parks NOT Private Playgrounds – Get Back on the Track!

Kangaroo Island Update 19/02/2019 forwarded  from Janine Macintosh, Bushland Conservation member and a passionate advocate for the KI environment.
Friends of Parks members on Kangaroo Island have ceased volunteering on parks and reserves in protest over the decision to build two luxury private accommodation villages on prominent fragile coastal sites in wild and unspoilt parts of Flinders Chase National Park. The sites are outside the development zones listed in the Park Management Plan (Amendment 2017). There was no community consultation.
Members of other Friends of Parks groups and other community organisations have joined the protest against the development. What is happening in Flinders Chase can happen elsewhere.
What are we protesting about? The 5-day Kangaroo Island Wilderness Trail already has four campsites adjacent to existing road access and discreetly located in secluded sites away from sensitive coastal habitats. However, the Department of Environment and Water has endorsed a proposal by the Australian Walking Company to develop two private luxury accommodation villages away from the Trail: • each village has 10 substantial buildings, plus water tanks, lookouts and    connecting paths • they are located up to 3 km from the Wilderness Trail • they are conspicuously placed on pristine coastal sites overlooking wild    and remote beaches • an additional 3 km of road will be bulldozed through native vegetation    to service them • they require an additional 7 km of cleared walking track to connect them with the Trail.
What do we want? The Minister and his Department to return this development to the one specified in the Management Plan and in the investment documents: that is for small scale luxury accommodation along the trail, close to existing road access and away from the sensitive coastal zone.

Join us in fighting against cuts to our parks and reserves: • Contact Minister Speirs, Premier Steven Marshall and your local State     MP and tell them you want our National Parks protected from inappropriate    development  • Write letters to media outlets (newspapers, radio, TV)  •

Follow us on Facebook:  •

Talk about it through your networks.


Parliament House

North Terrace Adelaide

Wednesday 27th February 12.30 -1.30

KI development news

From Janine Macintosh –

Another very worrying ‘consultation’ (open until Feb 22): “How can our new planning policy better support South Australia’s economy?”, which includes the alarming quote, “A policy response will be particularly important to support eco-tourism in our more pristine areas. Nature-based tourism is a significant growth area for our state and managing development activities within these locations (such as Kangaroo Island and the Eyre Peninsula) requires a level of policy reform to create a more enabling environment.” (ie change the laws so it’s easier for developers to exploit our most pristine public landscapes.)

The private developments in Flinders Chase National Park show this in action. KI Eco-Action have produced this newsletter about it:

The Friends of Parks KI Western Districts and Friends of Dudley Peninsula Parks have suspended all voluntary work on DEW managed land, including the planned FCNP Centenary celebrations. We’ll be working on private land instead!

October 2018 newsletter

The weather was fine, the campsite a delight, the company excellent and the AGM went well too. 17 shareholders attended and it was quite inspirational to have Doreen Matheson there. Julia, Daniel and Brodie from our youngest generation took the initiative to supply us with afternoon tea during the meeting. Well done and thank you. We had 2 visitors camp with us and 6 guests on the day.

The Chair, Bill Blessing, welcomed all present and spoke briefly on the recent death of Jeanine Vincent who has been a strong supporter of our Company and a dedicated environmentalist for many years.

Our first guest, Karleah Berris, attending with her family, spoke of the planned cat eradication program for Dudley Peninsula. She demonstrated how the “Felixer 3” trap worked – basically it uses video recognition software and 4 sensors to determine if an animal is a cat. If it is, it is hit by a globule of 1080 poison which it will then ingest by grooming itself and consequently die. At this stage no poison is being used and the software is being tested and upgraded to improve its recognition rate as it currently would only target 50% of cats which approach it.

Our second guest was Pat Hodgens who spoke about “Land for Wildlife” and their work in trying to establish the number and distribution of the KI Dunnart and the Southern Brown Bandicoot on KI. He is very passionate about protecting these animals and keen to set camera traps on our property to determine whether they are present though it is not expected. Permission to do this was granted.

Bill Blessing and David Smyth were elected as Directors and retiring Director, Janet Pedler, was thanked for her valuable input over the many years she has served on the Board.

The property reports highlighted the lack of rain on the mainland, the excellent turnout for Bill Matheson’s memorial planting day at Rockleigh and that TERN (Terrestrial Ecosystems Research Network) had revisited the Tothills and had permission to set up sites on our KI property. One of our KI shareholders, Dr Richard Glatz, will meet with them when they visit. One worrying aspect for the management of our KI property which was mentioned by John in his recent newsletter is the tracks being forged by trail bike riders.

The next AGM will be held at Rockleigh on a date yet to be determined. This will be followed on the Sunday with an open day to which neighbours and other environmental groups will be invited.