Gardening Australia guru Simon Cherriman flies into Margaret River for Nature Conservation workshops

Warren HatelyAugusta Margaret River Times
Simon Cherriman will swing into town for a Nature Conservation event early next month.
Camera IconSimon Cherriman will swing into town for a Nature Conservation event early next month. Credit: Supplied

In a talk hosted by Nature Conservation Margaret River Region next week, garden guru and author Simon Cherriman will help residents landscape their homes to help attract native wildlife.

The February 7 event will see the veteran ornithologist give an overview of his work in a talk at the Margaret River Heart.

Already a familiar face from appearances on Gardening Australia, Mr Cherriman has just released his first book, Hollowed Out, detailing his insights and methods to attract native birds into domestic gardens, as well as the benefits to the environment.

He returns to Margaret River for a hands-on workshop on February 18 outlining how tree hollows and nesting boxes can enhance a garden’s attractiveness to birdlife.

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Mr Cherriman said the Heart event would include discussion of the region’s most remarkable trees, the unique wildlife they supported, and the drastic changes wrought by Europeans “on one of only two official biodiversity hotspots in Australia” since settlement.

But he said nesting boxes offered optimism about redressing some of that damage and protecting vulnerable species.

Nature Conservation officer Peta Lierich says old trees with natural hollows are “vital” for many native animals – though many of those are also under threat due to clearing.

“There’s now a severe shortage for hollow-using animals like owls, cockatoos, micro bats and mammals,” she said.

“But well-researched and designed nest boxes on your property can be a major win for wildlife.”

Mr Cherriman has worked as an ornithologist, researcher and documentary maker for more than 20 years and runs his own business, Insight Ornithology, as well as a nesting-focused project known as the Re-Cyc-Ology Project.

His new book was touted as the culmination of two decades of study and photography of natural as well as artificial tree-hollows.

The Heart event costs $10 for Nature Conservation members and $15 for the general public, with bookings through www.natureconservation.org.au.

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