The Murray Local Land Services (Murray LLS) has been working with local landholders and Aboriginal groups to improve and maintain the ecological character of the NSW Central Murray Forests Ramsar wetlands. Ramsar listed sites are recognised under an international agreement for their ecological value.
The NSW Central Murray Forests Ramsar site consists of 3 sub-sites; Werai Forests, Millewa Forests and Koondrook-Perricoota Forests. The site represents some of the largest river red gum forests in Australia, and features important habitat for migratory birds, and migratory and nursery habitat for native fish. These floodplain forests also support eight threatened species, including Australasian bittern, Australian painted snipe, trout cod, and silver perch.
The Ramsar Wetland Project, funded by Catchment Action NSW and the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme, aims to reduce key ecological threats to the wetlands through the control of weeds and pests within and around the forests, while supporting local communities. The Murray LLS has provided funds to local landholders and a number of Aboriginal groups to carry out weed and pest control works in and around the Werai, Millewa and Koondrook-Perricoota wetland sites. The works include feral pig trapping, fox baiting and woody weed and aquatic weed control.
One of the key achievements of the project so far is the employment and skilling of local Aboriginal community members and building relationships between the local Aboriginal community and surrounding landholders. Murray LLS together with these groups have carried out large scale pest and weed eradication including:
- mapping and controlling Sagittaria (Sagittaria platyphylla, a noxious aquatic weed) in the Millewa Forest (3,000 Ha)
- fox baiting programs in the Werai and Millewa Forests (4,400 Ha)
- boxthorn control work in and around the Werai Forest (2,000 Ha)
- trapping over 200 Feral pigs in and around the Werai forest
Project partners include local landholders, Yarkuwa Indigenous Knowledge Centre, Moama Aboriginal Land Council, NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service, Murray Local Land Services and Forestry Corporation NSW.
During 2015/16 Murray LLS is looking at expanding the Moama LALC works program to further protect and maintain the ecological character of these important wetlands.
For more information, please contact:
Senior Land Services Officer – Water
M 0447 420 789