Jerra Master Plan

To: "Geoffrey Dabb" <>, <>
Subject: Jerra Master Plan
From: "Kevin and Gwenyth Bray" <>
Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2012 16:45:56 +1000
Dear Geoffrey and All
As an interested reader of the GOG (Canberra Birds) emails and a bird-watcher of pretty limited knowledge, but a keen one nonetheless, I'm wondering if COG members might see some merit in pressing for decisions on the Jerra Master Plan that are considered to be in the longer term interests of COG and, perhaps more importantly, in that of encouraging a wider public interest in our avian fauna and its conservation.
Would there, for instance, be advantage in seeking to locate and "fit out" the proposed centre in ways that could enhance real interest in our native birds (and in COG)  in a wider public - especially younger members of public?  If so, how might that affect COG's attitude to the centre?
What I'd be interesed to know in this context is the number and "demography" of COG's membership.  How representative of Canberra's demography?  Are there many younger (and active) members?  How many active members in any case?  Could the centre be located and fitted out so as to help redress any concerns current members may have about COG's ongoing, medium-to-longer term viability?
If I am off-beam in this, I apologise!  What has motivated me is the (possibly incorrect?) sense that those who see the Jerra Wetlands as an important place for keen, existing, bird-watchers to see birds, and who value the relative quietness of the sites and general lack of people who may disturb them, may prefer to avoid doing anything that might "threaten" the status quo.  That's a perfectly reasonable and understandable position to adopt.  However, is there an alternative that could preserve and enhance what's important now, but also offer some effective means to encourage new entrants into the facination of responsible bird-watching?  Could the centre be located and established so as to provide a suitable "gateway" to the wetlands, with a focus on education and encouragement?
PS.  On a different matter, our son and his wife are about to move (from Sydney) on to a 300 ha property between Gundagai and Adelong, the majority of which includes a designated, well-treed conservation zone, adjoining a national park.  They say there are many birds on the property and they are keen to learn as much about them as they can.  Can anyone advise if there is something like COG that covers that part of NSW?  Thanks.
Dr Kevin Bray

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