Seaforth Oval

Toolijooa has been managing the Seaforth Oval bushland surrounds since 2002. To date, works have focussed upon facilitating native species regeneration through the maintenance of low weed cover through better sections of the site and extending existing regeneration zones through primary and secondary weed control. Large portions of the site contain Duffys Forest Ecological Community, a listed Endangered Ecological Community under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act 1995.

The oval is situated on a large flat plateau comprised of fill material which, in the most part, consisted of clean crushed sandstone from the construction of the Roseville Bridge over 50 years ago. Subsequently, the regenerating oval surrounds have developed good plant community diversity and resilience with a relatively low weed presence. The oval is also surrounded by Garigal National Park along the majority of its boundary and seed dispersal from this surrounding vegetation has assisted greatly with the site’s regeneration. Fire has also played a positive role in the management of the site, reducing weed dominance and triggering germination events and plant regeneration. The site was burnt during the 2001 wildfires, while pile burns have also been undertaken since that time.

In addition to more traditional bush regeneration, Toolijooa have also planned and managed a Duffys Forest Ecological Community soil translocation project from donor and recipient areas within the site. These works were undertaken in association with the removal of an area of this community for road construction.

A high level of care was taken to avoid damage to the soil seed bank during the works in order to maximise the plant species diversity retained within the removed soil. Prior to the commencement of works a flora inventory was compiled. All plants that could be salvaged intact were carefully removed and maintained on-site until they could be relocated to recipient sites and all seed, including tree seed, was collected from the donor site and handed to Manly Council for storage and propagation. Comprehensive site briefings were provided for all contractors involved with the translocation and all machinery thoroughly cleaned off-site prior to works.

Material collected from the donor site included leaf litter, topsoil to a depth of 100mm and subsoil to a depth of 200mm. These layers were kept separate for the duration of the tranlocation. Excavation was carried out as quickly as possible to minimise the amount of time topsoil was stockpiled. Soil was stockpiled in long piles that did not exceed 1m in height, protected by silt fencing and covered with weed matting. The translocation was completed within five days. 

The two recipient sites both required removal of bitumen and road-base and were subsequently excavated to a depth of 300mm. The remaining compacted soils were ripped and the soils translocated in their original profile. Following translocation, machinery has been kept from entering the recipient sites to avoid compaction and mechanical damage. Logs and large braches collected from the donor site were laid to provide habitat. The site is currently beginning to regenerate and weed and erosion maintenance is being carried out. Floristic diversity and abundance will be monitored for five years. In addition to this, Toolijooa is collecting and propagating local Duffys Forest canopy species to be planted along the edges of the recipient sites as canopy species recruitment is typically poor within translocated soils.