Bill Elder

Joined: May 29, 2019 Last Active: Dec 03, 2021 iNaturalist Australia

I describe myself as an amateur entomologist after declaring an interest in insects while working in Kerang, Victoria with Dept. of Agriculture there. People would bring in insects and other things to be identified and advice on (usually) how to get rid of them! My interest in insects, indeed all things nature came after a sponsored trip to western NSW on an Earthwatch expedition. I assisted a team of researchers studying competition between sheep and kangaroos on the rangelands. I learnt a new appreciation for birds and plants - and the powerful beauty of the outback.
Eventually, I took up formal study in Agricultural Science and Business and spent two years at Longerenong College in my early 30's. Learnt about botany, entomology, crops, livestock, chemical use, frogs, and more. Some subjects were special studies in natural resources management which brought together care for the environment and farming practices. I later completed a second Diploma in Land Management which concentrated on environmental resource management, with a wide range of subjects from weeds to geology and water resources to fire behaviour.
I am a current member of the Field Naturalist's Club of Ballarat and former member of Birds Australia (RAOU as it was then), Bird Observers Club of Australia and Field Naturalist's Club of Victoria. I am the editor of the monthly newsletter for the club, "The Ballarat Naturalist" and I am convenor of a Junior group dubbed "The 'Rat Nats" which is currently held monthly at our place.
My efforts are focussed now on 8 hectares of stringybark forest south of Ballarat where my wife and I live in a sustainable house, off-grid. We have Land For Wildlife status as well as being a sanctuary in the Wildlife Land Trust. We recently negotiated a Conservation Covenant through Trust For Nature which permanently protects 6 hectares.

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