Bushland

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Bushland in Western Australia
Bushland in Brisbane set aside for the protection of koalas

Bushland is land which supports remnant vegetation or land which is disturbed but still retains a predominance of the original floristics and structure.[1] Bushland is the term commonly used by conservation protection groups and other environmental groups as a blanket term for natural vegetation, which may cover any kind of habitat from open shrubby country with few trees, to tall closed forests.[citation needed]

Human survival in bushland has a whole mythology evolving around it, with the legendary stories of Aboriginal trackers and bushrangers deeply entrenched in Australian folklore. Bushland has been a traditional source of wood for fuel and bushfood.[2]

Bushland provides a number of ecosystem services including the protection of water quality, stopping erosion, acting as a windbreak, and trapping nutrients.[3] Bushland is prone to bushfires. This presents a challenge to authorities as infrastructure and habitations encroach into bushland areas.[4]

Preservation[edit]

Until recently Australia had a very high rate of land clearing which resulted in the destruction of bushland.[5] Since 2006 the rate of land clearing has declined significantly. This is partially attributed to legislation which placed a ban on broadscale clearing of mature bushland in Queensland in 2006 and an expansion of those bans to regrowing bushland with a high conservation value in 2009.[6] In New South Wales bushfires cause the greatest destruction of bushland, followed by land clearing for crops, grazing, road and buildings.[7]

Bushland preservation has become the focus of some conservation efforts. In Brisbane, the Brisbane City Council has established a Bushland Acquisition Program which is funded by a small levy paid by rate-payers.[8] The program began in 1990 and aims to protect koala habitat from urban development.[9] It is estimate that the koala population in the area has declined from 6,240 in 1996 to 1,500 in 2012.[10][clarification needed]

See also[edit]


References[edit]

  1. ^ Dictionary for Managing Trees in Urban Environments. Csiro Publishing. 2009. p. 23. ISBN 0643096078. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  2. ^ Batello, Caterina; Adamou Harouna Touré, Peter Ervin Kenmore (2004). The Future is an Ancient Lake: Traditional Knowledge, Biodiversity and Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture in Lake Chad Basin Ecosystems. Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. p. 166. ISBN 9251050643. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  3. ^ "Fact Sheet 7: Managing our Bushland". Lake Macquarie City Council. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  4. ^ Bowman, David (2003). "Bushfires: A Darwinian Perspective". In Geoffrey, Cary; Lindenmayer, David; Dovers, Stephen. Australia Burning: Fire Ecology, Policy and Management Issues. Csiro Publishing. p. 11. ISBN 0643098542. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  5. ^ "Bushland On Life Support". Media Release. Centre for Plant Biodiversity Research and Australian National Herbarium. 4 November 2002. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  6. ^ Taylor, Martin (2013). WWF Bushland at risk of renewed clearing in Queensland 2013. WWF-Australia. p. 4. ISBN 978-1-921031-48-9. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  7. ^ Ben Cubby (21 December 2011). "Loggers are clearing bushland at rising rate". The Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  8. ^ "Bushland Preservation Levy". Brisbane City Council. 2 September 2013. Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  9. ^ Liam Parsons (13 September 2011). "Vital bushland acquisition by BCC". Southern Star (Quest Newspapers). Retrieved 6 October 2013. 
  10. ^ Tony Moore (15 March 2012). "Conservation group claims koala numbers fudged". Brisbane Times (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 6 October 2013.