Friends of Grasslands
supporting native grassy ecosystems
PO Box 987
Civic Square ACT 2608
Phone: 02 62.. ....
Livestock Health and Pest Authority Review
PO Box 8731
Gundaroo NSW 2620
Review of the Livestock Health and Pest Authorities
On 28 September, Friends of Grasslands (FOG) submitted to you some comments on the Review of the LHPA issues paper. Subsequent to that submission, FOG has received feedback from attendees to the regional consultation meetings and, as a result of these discussions, would like to expand on some of the points in its earlier submission before the final public submission process closes on 5 November. We do this because visits to traveling stock reserves (TSRs) to observe and marvel at the diversity and abundance of their native flora and fauna have featured regularly in FOG's member activity calendar across many years. This is testimony to the fact that TSRs consistently retain the best intact examples of remnant native vegetation communities and native fauna habitats that were once widespread throughout rural NSW.
In our original submission, we talked about the important role TSRs play in creating connectivity and habitat corridors across the landscape, and that the way in which the TSR network is managed will have effects well beyond NSW borders. This is because the NSW network is of national significance, and connects with stock routes and corridors in other states. These interstate connections are important for biodiversity and ecological services, as well as tourism and cultural routes.
The NSW TSR network is of national and state significance as it contains native grassy ecosystems that are poorly represented in formal government conservation reserve systems and in the wider protected area network. The TSR network is playing and will continue to play a vital role in adapting to climate change both in assisting native biodiversity to persist in and move through these landscapes, and in maintaining ecosystem services and the economic, environmental and social benefits these services confer upon agricultural and other communities.
Previously, we also mentioned our belief that the management of TSRs should be funded by public monies because of the public benefit of TSRs with high conservation value. Such ongoing investment of public money to maintain and improve the TSR network would be a comparatively modest and cost effective investment as it provides much needed biodiversity conservation benefits whilst not excluding a multitude of other public benefits for rural industry and tourism.
John Fitz Gerald
4 November 2011