Way back in 2008 after training on the Climate Project with ACF and Al Gore I was a guest on community radio 3wBC talking all things climate with Viarnne Mischon.
Listen to the podcast below.
Worms are instinctive creatures, and they don't lose that instinct once they are in a worm farm.
In the wild, their instinct helps them survive, but in a worm farm, that same instinct can get them into a lot of trouble!
Why worms head down into the drip tray:
Escape from heat
Protection from predators
Prevent drying out
What they didn't count on was the underground lake (drip tray)!
Worms aren't particularly good swimmers with their lack of limbs and life jackets. When they get down into the drip tray it can spell disaster.
It is best to leave the tap open so that the underground lake is more of a puddle, giving your worms the best chance of survival.
In summer you may even need to do rescue missions to get the worms out of the drip tray and back up into the farm. In particularly hot weather, freeze some of your food scraps before putting them in the worm farm. The worms will then move towards or away from the frozen scraps to regulate their temperature.
You have to love social media. While procastinating getting out of bed this morning, I was cruising through my Facebook news feed (admit it, we all do it), and came across a great share by Mashable on 'eco apps'.
As skeptical as I was curious, I actually found they had listed a couple of gems. My favourite had to be the solar locator, where you can pretend your phone is a solar panel and compare the output as you tilt it and change its orientation. Way cool.
However we are not here to talk technology. I also found a great app listed called iRecycle.
I've been dreaming of developing an app like this; now I don't have to!
Interested in learning more about local flora, fauna and more?
We are running a bunch of workshops soon though a landcare grant and would love your input.
Yes, we all love chocolate, but there are so many other ways to raise funds for your school or club without packing on the kilos.
At Chooktopia we offer fundraising with Worm Farms, Bokashi bins and garden products. We are looking into what other products would work well for fundraising too.
In my research I came across a great list from the Natural New Age Mum on healthy fundraiser options. I'll be contacting some of the companies on her great list and explore offering them as a part of my store and fundraising options, to become a bit of a 'one stop shop' for ethical and healthy fundraising.
What sorts of things would you like to see Chooktopia offer for ethical, healthy fundraising?
In a year where we have seen evil triumph, the great barrier reef put under threat, gay marriage quashed by the High Court, the environment and climate change disappear off the agenda, coal exports and ports increased... it's easy to lose hope and feel like we have lost our voice.
'What is wrong with people?' I continue to ask myself. In a period of time where I am surrounded by informed, educated, passionate people, how can it come to pass that our government, business and even individuals have taken us back decades in the course of only months?
Even the most passionate of us are jaded by ignorance and bad decisions. I wish it was in my power to change things but it is not. It is a collective power that we need. A grass roots revolution. We need to band together and stay strong. Together we can make a difference. But we need to stay strong. We need to stay empowered, and we need to be patient.
There is no better time than now to spread your influence; talk to lesser informed friends about the consequences of their votes and decisions, their power as a consumer, and the weight of their voice to both local and national decision makers.
The following video really stuck a chord with me. I'm sure it will with you too. Canada, Australia and the USA seem to have all lost their way. But remember, change starts with us.
Chooktopia is a proud supporter of One Person Can!
"So what can one person do?"
We all know that just one person reducing their carbon footprint and living more sustainably is not going to reverse climate change, right? What if we all knew many, many other people are doing their bit to help?
In fact, all sorts of people are making climate-friendly lifestyle changes, but these changes are rarely visible. Perhaps you switch off unnecessary lights, or grow your own vegies, or buy Green Power, but how many people know that?
Take the One Person Can survey to help make your positive actions visible, and be sure to choose Chooktopia from the drop down menu in registration so we can celebrate your great efforts!
OK, IT'S COMPETITION TIME!!!
In celebration of International Respect for Chickens month, Chooktopia is running chook themed competitions.
COMPETITION 1: Describe the shape of an egg in just 3 words.
Prize 1: The answer that gets the most “likes” wins a $50 Chooktopia voucher towards products from our website or services such as home energy assessments – so share with your friends to get the most likes!! Voucher will be valid for 6 months.
Prize 2: The answer that I personally like the most, gets a palm oil free, cruelty free, divine Clean Conscience Laundry Product.
You have until the end of May, so get those creative juices flowing me and dazzle Chooktopia with balderdash or brilliance - or both!
Post your answers below or over on our facebook page, and get your friends to vote!
Did you know...?
One baby can use more than 6500 disposable nappies within their first three years of life.
The average disposable nappy costs between 28 cents and 80 cents. So that’s a cost of between $1,800 and $5,200, as opposed to modern cloth nappies which the average family purchase is $500. Even of you spent $100 a year in washing, that’s still a saving of between $1,000 and $4,400. I know I’d rather keep that money for myself than give it to a big corporation for plastic lined, chlorine bleached products!
So why chuck up to $4,400 in the bin (and have a stinky bin) when you can:
a) Spend it on yourself, your house, garden, pets or family
b) Toilet train your baby sooner (as the baby feels wet, they toilet train sooner)
c) Adorn your baby in gorgeous designs
What about wasting water?
Have you ever stopped to consider the water that goes in to making disposable products?
Not only does it take a huge amount of water to process the materials during manufacture (more than you would ever use in washing); disposable nappies also rely heavily on fossil fuels like oil to make the plastic, coal to power the factory to manufacture the nappies, plastic packaging etc., and then more oil (particularly diesel) to transport the factory-made plastic laden products across the planet to your local supermarket.
Your supermarket then uses more resources, to transport items from store to store, store in a well-lit, air conditioned building for you to browse, and use non recycled paper for copious amounts of catalogues, most of which will never be read, all to market an item that will have only a few hours of use before being sent to landfill. So not all the resources in a disposable nappy are buried, many are simply wasted along an unsustainable supply chain.
It uses a lot less water and chemicals to make a reusable item than a disposable one, as the reusable item only had to be made once, then has years of use, using a fraction of the resources than would be used to constantly replace the item.
Even when you take in to account the water and detergent (hopefully free from palm oil, excessive salts and petrochemicals), cloth nappies still come out on top for resource efficiency – a long way on top!
What about Nappy Rash?
Nappy Rash can be caused from a range of factors, including illness, teething, the harsh chemicals in disposable nappies (particularly chlorine) or even the creams and oils that disposable nappies require to protect the baby. This isn’t needed with cloth nappies.Little Diamond Bums has put together a range of FAQs that can answer this question and more.
Modern cloth nappies start at around $20 ea. Each one gets used at least 1,000 times in the child's first three years of like. So that's an average cost per use of 2 cents!
There are some inspirational mums out there who can run your baby shower for you, teach you how to use the nappies (it’s really easy) and offer you ongoing advice and support.
Occasionally Chooktopia will sell the odd cloth nappy as I come across wholesale specials, but for your everyday needs, talk to the experts – Little Diamond Bums and Soft Bots.
Two of my preferred Cloth Nappy businesses based in Melbourne but servicing all of Australia:
South East Suburbs, Bayside and Mornington Peninsula, contact Nat or Amy from Little Diamond Bums.
Eastern Suburbs, contact Tash from Soft Bots.
I received this on email today - thanks Heike, and wanted to share...
Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition
As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high gear to provide Australians with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods -- merchandise that has been produced at the expense of Australian labour.
This year will be different. This year Australians will give the gift of genuine concern for other Australians. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift-giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by Australian hands. Yes there is!
It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in a shirt box, wrapped in Chinese produced wrapping paper?
Everyone -- yes EVERYONE gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates from your local Australian hair salon or barber?
Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some health improvement.
Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, Australian-owned detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a book of gift certificates.
Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down the Benjamin s on a Chinese made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or games at the local golf course.
There are a lots of Australian owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about a half-dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint. Remember, folks this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town Australians with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.
How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the Australian working guy?
Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mum? Mum would LOVE the services of a local cleaning lady for a day.
My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young guy who is struggling to get his repair business up and running.
OK, you were looking for something more personal. Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewellery, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.
Plan your holiday outings at local, owner-operated restaurants and cafes. Or what about going out to see a play or ballet at your hometown theatre.
Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.
Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand Chinese lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of light, about fifty cents stays in the community. If you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the postie, garbo or babysitter a nice BIG tip.
You see, Christmas is no longer about draining Australian pockets so that China can build another glittering city. Christmas is now about caring about US, encouraging Australian small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams.
And, when we care about other Australians, we care about our communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine .
THIS is the new Australian Christmas tradition.
Forward this to everyone on your mailing list -- post it to discussion groups -- send it to the editor of your local paper and radio stations, and TV news departments. This is a revolution of caring about each other, and isn't that what Christmas is about?
A nature loving professional sharing ideas to do good in the world.