Cave clean out success

Date posted: 09 March 2012

While many people chose to clean South Australian beaches and parks as part of the national Clean up Australia day last week (Sunday, March 4), a committed group chose a different location.

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the Cave Exploration Group of South Australia (CEGSA) worked together to clean up Sand Cave in Naracoorte.

DENR on-ground works officer Toby Read said the day was a success.

“We removed a lot of general farm waste such as wire, sheets of iron and bottles and also a large tree was removed from the cave entrance,” Mr Read said.

“Though the clean-up site was not open to volunteers a total of 13 people across the two organisations helped to remove the rubbish with the biggest hurdle being site access.

“A lot of the day was spent working from heights or sloping terrain so it was great to have the help and expertise of CEGSA.”

Mr Read said the clean-up will play a vital role this winter for the critically endangered southern bent-winged bat as the cave is potentially a good location for an over-wintering site, and removing the rubbish allows the bats easy access into the cave.

“The cave, as well as 70 hectares of land above it, was added to the World Heritage Naracoorte Caves National Park in November 2011,” he said.

“Although not yet open to the public, it has generated immense interest from the caving community, palaeontologists and researchers.

“Sand Cave will continue to be an area of focus in 2012-13 as 70 hectares of land surrounding the cave has been approved for re-vegetation.

“This will increase potential habitat for the endangered red-tailed black cockatoo, link-up large patches of woodland on the Naracoorte Range and provide food and shelter for many other native animals.”

DENR will coordinate several volunteering opportunities for tree planting this winter at Sand Cave. Those interested in helping should keep watching the local media for details.

Anyone who has a cave on their property which requires rubbish removal can contact DENR on 08 8735 1177 and a member of the Habitat Recovery Team will be able to offer assistance.

Media Contact

Alex Taylor
(08) 8204 1934
0423 827 613