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FoDI Working Bee, November 2016

Posted on 10 November, 2016 at 2:50 Comments comments (2)

November 8, 2016

Eight volunteer members of FoDI will travel to Deal Island this week to take up residence on the island for the two week November 2016 working bee. As usual, it will be a busy time incorporating a lengthy job list. (See the News Page on FoDI Web Site at for full job list).
Good luck to the crew for a successful and safe time on Deal Island.

November 9, 2016

With the safe arrival of our "follow-up" crew of four to Lady Barron on Flinders Island this morning, they were transported to "Strait Lady" where skipper James cast of to collect the "forward support/supply crew" from the Whitemark jetty.
Once all supplies were loaded the journey began, once again, for Deal Island and a late lunch for our volunteers. By all accounts, the seas are compliant and we trust the crossing will be comfortable for all. Safe travel!

November 10, 2016

Our November 16 working bee members are on the island report a good sea crossing and all hands well.


Posted on 17 February, 2016 at 5:05 Comments comments (0)

Wednesday  February 17, 2016

The FoDI February 2016 working bee began on Deal Island on Wednesday 10th following a prolonged journey from Bridport to Flinders Island by some of our volunteer crew.  All flights in and out of Flinders Island were delayed due to heavy smoke in the atmosphere caused by bushfires on the west coast of Tasmania.

Once on Deal Island it took a day or two for many of our group to recover from sea-sickness following a rough passage from Flinders Island to Deal Island.  Now the work schedule is running well with favourable weather conditions.

The weeding program members have assessed the area where the flea beetle was recently introduced to the areas of ragwort infestation. To date, flowering heads of ragwort plants have been cut and collected, sea spurge has been cleared from Garden Cove and the new sea spurge seedlings across East Coast have been assessed in readiness for weeding.

Mark Woodley, a prominent Tasmanian heritage plasterer, has joined the working bee in order to repair the damage to ceilings in the Superintendent’s Cottage.  Mark has mixed and applied the lime plaster to two large “holes” in the ceiling of the main room and to the “hole” which is situated just inside the front door of the cottage.  In Mark’s opinion, the cottage is in remarkable condition for its age and locality and is one of the best examples of a Georgian house he has sighted – with the continuation of  restoration and maintenance he believes the cottage should stand for another 200 years.  Joy to our ears!


Posted on 6 November, 2015 at 0:00 Comments comments (0)

Friday, November 6th, 2015

Eight volunteer members of Friends of Deal Island are landed on Flinders Island where they have been waiting for severe weather conditions to abate in order to make the boat crossing to Deal Island.  It is likely the crossing will eventuate tomorrow (Saturday).

This November working bee will incorporate maintenance weeding of all known weed sites on Deal Island  and planning for the proposed release of bio agents (the ragwort flea beetle) in February.  

In the Kent Group Museum, the lighthouse signal flags will be housed in new canisters (to be made on the island),  Copies of the handmade and hand-illustrated personal journals of Trauti Reynolds will be placed and displayed in the museum and a plaque of recognition to Dr Stephen Murray-Smith will be hung in the museum  A number of photographic collections will be developed, in booklet form, for the museum Reading Room.

Friends of Deal Island November 2014 Working Bee

Posted on 3 November, 2014 at 1:40 Comments comments (0)

Thursday 20th November, 2014

Yesterday the FoDI volunteer working-bee departed Deal Island having completed all tasks.  We were gathered at the East Cove jetty at midday awaiting the arrival of "Strait Lady"

Once the boat arrived it was packed and with all bodies on board we cast off from the jetty at 1.00p.m.  In no time at all we left East Cove and Deal Island in our wake and the volunteer caretakers to the peace of sole occupancy of the island.

Today a leisurely time was spent on Flinders Island as we await the return flight to Launceston tomorrow morning.  Trousers Point was a great place to contemplate the beauty of Flinders Island before returning home and beginning the preparations for the next FoDI working bee in 2015.

Tuesday 18th November, 2014

FoDI volunteers are winding down on Deal Island today with sorting and packing away tools etc as we prepare to depart Deal Island tomorrow aboard the "Strait Lady" on the return trip to Flinders Island.

The working-bee has been successful and the final project of erecting the extension to the wallaby exclusion fencing on East Cove has been completed on a very steep and difficult section of the hill.  Most of us are feeling akin to mountain goats  - it beats a session at the gym.

The Kent Group Museum is now ready for summer visitors and we look forward to comment on the new interpretation installations.  The set of very old reading books which date back to 1890 have been returned to the museum following thorough cleaning of their cloth covers and brushing of every page to remove dust and insect matter.

FoDI executive especially thank all volunteers who gave of their time and energy to attend this November working-bee.  It has been a great group to work with and has provided good entertainment around the table and in the evenings, especially the "let's make a teddy bear" workshop made possible by Margie who so kindly prepared kits.  

The culinary delights have been amazing from our own volunteers and also from the volunteer caretakers on Deal Island, Kym and Spud, whose hospitality and company we have thoroughtly appreciated.

Friday 14th November, 2014

Connection to an internet server has not been possible from Deal Island for many days and nights so I trust that this blog entry will publish!

The FoDI weeding team continue the secondary weeding of sea spurge on East Cove hill.  A trip to Winter Cove during the week found just 17 sea spurge plants which is very pleasing.

Work in the Kent Group Museum is completed with the labelling of all relevant collection items and the installation of the last double-sided inerpretation banner - The First Lightkeeper and The Last Lightkeeper.  Work is also completed on the lathe and plaster ceilings of the museum in preparation for replastering in the new year.  

The museum has been thoroughly cleaned with dusting and wiping down of all surfaces and vacuuming and washing of all floor areas.  It is pleasing that not one single silverfish was sighted.

Today work began on the wallaby exclusion/erosion fencing on East Cove and it is anticipated that this fence will be completed prior to the departure of the volunteers next week.

Sunday 9th November 2014 - from "Telstra Table" on Garden Cove Track

Yesterday our volunteer weeding team concentrated on the area of Garden Cove and were more than pleased to find that the sea spurge has reseeded at a considerably reduced rate.

Work began in the museum on the labelling of collection items and the William and Augusta Baudinet portrait and family story which has been taken off the island to be reframed was rehung in its traditional position above the fireplace in the front room.

Work also commenced on the cleaning of the museum ceilings in preparation for plastering next year.

Today, Sunday, is the traditional "day off" for our FoDI volunteers and we all took advantage of the sunshine and blue skies to explore this stunning and very special national park.  Below is the view from the northern headland of Garden Cove across Murray Pass to Erith and Dover Islands.

Yesterday the yacht, which was moored in East Cove on our arrival on Thursday evening, sailed off and was replaced in the afternoon by a motor vessel which today remained moored in Garden Cove (below).  Tonight all of us look forward to an outdoor barbeque as we take advantage of the pleasant weather conditions.


Friday 7th November 2014 - from the "Telstra Seat" on the Garden Cove Track

Yesterday, Thursday, our volunteer working party departed Whitemark on Flinders Island aboard Strait Lady to cross to Deal Island at 1.00p.m.  Weather conditions were still rough but abating.  Our skipper made the decision to head for the northern end of Flinders Island before making a final decision to cross to Deal.  As we approached the northern tip of Flinders Island, the seas continued to rise and the journey was becoming more than rough.  The skipper, James, made a quick decision to run behind Royden Island and to 'wait up' until the seas abated to something more comfortable.  Three and a half hours later following a discussion between the skipper and the team, we decided to poke our nose out into the open waters before making a decision to return to Whitemark and making a strike for Deal in the morning!  

Although the seas were still quite confused and sloppy, James felt we could make headway to Deal Island if all on board felt they could deal with the rough patches.  At a considerably slower pace than usual, we arrived at East Cove on Deal Island at 8.30p.m. - all on board were tired and a bit wet, but thankful that we had continued on to our destination. We were treated to the most wonderful sight of a near-full golden moon rising over Barn Hill as we entered Murray Pass.

 All was unloaded and in the house by 9.30p.m. where we enjoyed a hot cup of tea and toast before heading to the comfort of our beds.

This morning the sun rose on a perfectly peaceful sea and we have enjoyed a totally blue-sky day on the island.  All the materials which were brought out for the museum were carried up to the lovely old Georgian style Superintendent's House - the home of the Kent Group Museum.  The afternoon was spent bagging thistles on East Cove which has now been cleared of regrowth.  It is very pleasing to know that the rate of regrowth is deminshing significantly.

The old Lightstation is looking pristine and it is obvious that the present caretakers have put in an enormous effort to have it looking immaculate for the summer season.

I sit on the Garden Cove Track writing this entry in the blog as the full moon rises over this magnificent island which never ceases to shine its magic on all who visit her.

Photo below is of FoDI volunteer bagging thistles on East Cove

Wednesday 5th November 2014

The November working bee team have spent a second day in Whitemark, Flinders Island, awaiting improved weather conditions for a safe crossing from Flinders Island to Deal Island.  James Luddington, boat skipper, is hopeful that conditions will have abated sufficiently for us all to depart Flinders Island some time tomorrow morning - at the outside he hopes to take us across tomorrow afternoon.  All our foodstuffs for the two week stay on Deal are boxed and secured in waterproof bagging and are sitting stored in Walkers Supermarket.

Many cups of coffee have been enjoyed in Freckles Coffee Shop as we wait for the call.  Today most of us enjoyed a good walk across Flinders Island under heavy skies and in a fresh and cool wind.  Visibility across the island and out to sea has been extremely low today.

Dinner is booked in the Interstate Hotel, Whitemark, for tonight and we keenly look forward to boarding the Strait Lady some time tomorrow.

Below is a brooding image of Flinders Island as a threatening low weather system passes across the island.


Monday 3rd November, 2014

Eight members of Friends of Deal Island will travel to Flinders Island tomorrow, 4th November, for a 14 day working bee.  Tasks to be tackled include the follow-up weeding of sea spurge on East Cove, and to revisit all other weed infestations on the island.

Repair work will be undertaken on the lathe and plaster ceilings of the museum in preparation for replastering of the damaged areas of ceiling in 2015.  

The final double-sided banner (The First Lightkeeper and The Last Lightkeeper) will be installed in the museum as per the Kent Group Museum Installation Plan and labelling of collection pieces will be undertaken.  Shades will be fitted to windows where light intensity is excessive and the William and Augusta Baudinet portraits and family history has been reframed (through the generous donation of Mrs Freda Salter of New Norfolk, Tasmania) and will be returned to the island and rehung in its place above the fireplace in the museum.

Best endeavour will be made to add to this blog during the period of the working bee.  However, those of you who have had the privelege of visiting Deal Island will know that it is not always possible to connect to a server and that internet activity on the island can be sporadic!