Friends of Grasslands

supporting native grassy ecosystems

PO Box 987

Civic Square ACT 2608

Phone: 02 62.. ....

Mr David Rowe

Director, Operations
Yass Valley Shire Council

PO Box 6

YASS NSW 2582

Dear Mr Rowe

Friends of Grasslands (FoG) wishes to provide comments on the draft Murrumbateman Bush Cemetery Landscape Development Plan, made available for comment by Council in March 2007. FoG is pleased that Council is taking steps to provide for long term conservation management of the site.

FoG is a non-profit organisation incorporated in the ACT and dedicated to supporting threatened grassy ecosystems in south-east Australia, such as grassy woodlands, including through:

FoG has over 200 members, most from the ACT and SE NSW, including professional ecologists and others associated with natural resource management sciences, farmers, landowners and managers, members of Landcare and Parkcare groups, and dedicated conservationists.

You may be aware that FoG members surveyed plants at the Cemetery site in late October 2006. FoG had been asked by the NSW Department of Environment and Conservation to undertake the survey to assist in the preparation of a management plan. FoG's view is that the Cemetery has superb woodlands and secondary grasslands: despite the drought it put on a wonderful wildflower display. FoG understands that the Cemetery is an important woodland bird refuge, e.g. for the superb parrot, and habitat for other threatened wildlife e.g. the golden sun moth.

After the survey, FoG met with the local Landcare group and Cemetery Trust on site. Members were very interested to: learn about the vegetation communities present, and the importance of the cemetery as remnant vegetation and habitat; see examples of the significant grasses and forbs; and discuss suitable conservation management practices. FoG was keen to communicate that the natural values of the site alone make a visit to this community facility worthwhile.

FoG's comments on the draft Plan are as follows.

Thank you for allowing FoG to provide a slightly late submission on the draft Plan.

Yours sincerely

Kim Pullen

President

2 April 2007