Friends of Sassafras Creek Inc (FOSC) was established in 1991 and work in the Sassafras Creek Nature Conservation Reserve along the Sassafras Creek corridor and its tributary Perrins Creek. Work focuses from the headwaters at Sassafras Township to Beagleys Bridge and towards the Lyrebird Falls Reception area at Kallista. The creek corridor is approximately 27 hectares along the Sassafras Creek, and 19 hectares along Perrins Creek – a total of 46 hectares.
FOSC has a small group of active and enthusiastic members including students, environmental workers, local residents and several retired members of the community. Membership numbers have varied over the years, peaking at 40 members. Currently the group has 16 active members.
The Sassafras Creek Nature Conservation Reserve is home to at least seven threatened species and one threatened vegetation community - cool temperate rainforest ( Ecological Vegetation Class (EVC) 31).
One of the main species in this group is the Sassafras tree. There is a significant stand of Flora and Fauna Guarantee listed endangered Slender (Cyathea cunninghamii) and Skirted Tree-ferns along the Creek downstream from Beagleys Bridge.
The reserve includes areas of rainforest providing habitat for a range of regionally significant birds including Lyrebirds, Olive Whistler, Pink Robins, Sooty Owl, Powerful Owls, and Owlet nightjar.
The Grey Goshawk has been recorded on several recent working bees also. Common inhabitants include: Ringtail possums, Brushtail possums, wombats and Dusky Antechinus, a small marsupial carnivore, are often observed.
The Central Highlands spiny crayfish and three threatened
(Dandenongs amphipod), Austrogammarus
(Sherbrooke amphipod) and Engaeus
(Dandenong Ranges burrowing Crayfish), are found in the reserve.
FOSC has 3 key aims:
Improve the biodiversity and habitat of native and threatened species in the creek corridor.
Enhance community awareness of the natural values of and common threats to the reserve; particularly to increase understanding of the negative impact weeds from abutting private land is having on the reserve.
Partner and liaise with relevant agencies, such as Melbourne Water, Yarra Ranges Council, Parks Victoria
AUSNET and VicRoads for financial and physical assistance to preserve the integrity and promote better environmental outcomes for the reserve.