It's the beginning of the breeding season for Little Penguins off the Eurobodalla Shire's coastline, and conservation crews are excited.
About 45 breeding pairs of Little Penguins or Eudyptula minors were previously recorded on Batemans Bay's Snapper Island.
Eurobodalla Shire Council natural resource supervisor, Heidi Thomson, said the team's work to reduce threats to the colony was paying off.
"Part of the project is to get rid of viny-type weeds, like turkey rhubarb which can cause entanglement, but we don't want to take away their nesting material," Ms Thomson said.
"We are replacing those weeds with concrete nest boxes, which they took to really quickly!"
Ms Thomson said crews stay off the island to "give penguins the space they need" during breeding season.
The shire's penguin colonies are located on Snapper Island, Tollgate Islands and Montague Island off Narooma.
The team's focus is on Snapper Island, which is a council-managed island and declared nature reserve.
Ms Thomson said most people did not know know Little Penguins lived just a short distance off the coast of Batemans Bay.
"It's kind of a good thing because it means they haven't been disturbed; Snapper Island has a no landing policy so people can't go onto the island anyway; that's the way we want to keep it," she said.
"We want people to know they're there, so they can think about their actions around the waterways and how they may impact on the penguin colonies."
Ms Thomson said plastic waste and marine debris was also a huge threat.
"We have seen penguins use pieces of plastic as nesting material - which is not nice," she said.
"There are stories of plastic getting fed to babies."
The Clean Up for Clyde (the Little Penguin) project was funded through the Federal Government's Community Environment Program.
Landcare and school volunteers assist with weed control and debris cleanup along the Clyde River foreshore.
"We are getting the kids out there to do the marine debris cleanup and record what they're finding on the national database," Ms Thomson said.
"We talk about alternatives to using plastics - trying to reduce the overall amount of marine debris in the area."
With four schools so close to the estuary, Ms Thomson said students were taught: "If you drop a muesli wrapper in the school yard - there's a high chance it could end up in the estuary and then on snapper island."
Once participating in the cleanup, children's second-hand shirts are screen-printed with "Clyde the penguin".
Due to COVID-19 reasons, Ms Thomson said the 2020 program was extended to June next year, allowing extra time to work with schools and for weed control.
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