Scouts Nesting Boxes

  Monday 19th April, 2021

As a result of the catastrophic 2019 /2020 Black Summer bushfires a significant amount of natural habitat has been destroyed. Local families have seen first-hand the loss of diversity of animals and birds in the local area.

This project looked to make a small local change to animal habitat and empower local children aged 7 to 10 years old, to make a positive change within a bushfire affected community.

The project involved a local scouting group (Cub Pack) building 17 animal nesting boxes. These boxes were to be installed in the fire-affected community of Sarsfield in East Gippsland. Through the project the children learned about animals that use nesting boxes and more about the impact of the local bushfires on wildlife.

The project successfully helped make positive change in the mental health for young people (Scouts) and East Gippslanders impacted by the bushfires.

Watching the Scouts listen and interacting with Pete Simpson (DELWP) as he talked about the bushfire impacts and importance of Nesting Boxes, it was clear all participants saw the value in the work they were doing. Building the boxes, it was great to see smiling faces learning new skills (e.g. using a drill/painting) and the sense of satisfaction they showed when the builds were complete.

During Bob, Virginia and Anthony’s presentations (all impacted by bushfires) the Scouts were respectful, listening carefully and asking great questions. Watching the installation of the boxes gave the Scouts a strong sense of connection between the problem and solution (“That’s my box up there!”), while leaving Haggars Road in Sarsfield at the end of the night after hanging all the boxes, it was clear that everyone knew and felt they’d made a difference.


This project could not have occurred without the generous support of many individuals and organisations (acknowledged below).

NOTE: You may need to scroll the table below left/right for more information

Individuals / Organisations


Harry Hof

Harry was integral to this project as he built all the 17 Nesting Box flat packs and also assisted the Cubs to screw together and paint the boxes. He worked with local arborists and volunteers to install the boxes in Sarsfield.

Bairnsdale Scout Group

As the host organisation, Bairnsdale Scout Group were instrumental in ensuring the project was delivered at a high standard.

Elbow Community Building

Elbow Community Building provided the link between the idea and the funding for the project. They also reviewed and approved the project plan.

Gippsland Lakes Complete Health

GLCH, through Connect Well, were able to fund this project (in full). Having access to sufficient funds to purchase high quality materials made a measurable difference to this project. It also removed barriers enabling the project to proceed.


Dahlsens Bairnsdale kindly donated 2 sheets of 17mm marine plywood and 100 stainless-steel screws. This was approximately half of the materials required for the project.

East Gippsland Tree Services

Div Tarling owner of East Gippsland Tree Services kindly donated half a day of his time to “hang” 5 Nesting boxes in Haggars Road Sarsfield. The Cubs latter had a ball finding these in their nesting box scavenger hunt.

Tree Patrol

Gareth Flanagan, owner of Tree Patrol, kindly donated a few hours of his time to show the Cubs how an arborist climbs a tree and he installed two nesting boxes.

Dept. Environment Land Water & Planning

Pete Simpson of DELWP kindly donated his time to prepare and deliver an informative talk about fires and nesting boxes to the Cubs.

Bob Carter & Virginia King

Bob and Virginia gave an informative talk to the Cubs about what it’s like to live through a fire. Their talk also discussed changes since the fires and noted why nesting boxes are important.

Kate and Anthony Nelson

Anthony provided informative talk similar to Bob and Virginia focused on fauna at his property. Kate and Anthony also kindly allowed the Cubs to complete their nesting box scavenger hunt on their property.

Residents of Haggars Road Sarsfield

Five residents kindly agreed to have nesting boxes installed on their properties.