Landholders helping restore Sandhill Pine Woodlands
21 Jun 2023
Landholders and Western Local Land Services have once again joined forces in an ambitious project to protect and restore 150 hectares of the threatened Sandhill Pine Woodland community.
Sandhill Pine Woodlands are an incredibly diverse, ancient, and unique part of the NSW Riverina landscape. The formation of these sandhills occurred over millions of years. They occur adjacent to current and former river channels along the Lachlan, Murrumbidgee, and Murray Rivers. Sandhills are important cultural sites for indigenous people and have been sources of livestock shelter and forage, timber, and sand since European settlement.
Described by early explorers as “dense forests that were often too thick to travel through on horseback”, todays Sandhills are a shadow of their former character.
The Sandhill Pine Restoration Project hopes to restore some of the Sandhill Pine community to a condition that offers shade and forage to livestock and habitat for birds and mammals.
Senior Land Services Officer with Western Local Land Services, Andrea Cashmere said the project involves working with landholders in western Riverina who understand the importance of enhancing and protecting this threatened vegetation community on their properties.
“It’s an exciting, multi-faceted project to be involved in,” Andrea said.
“The biggest part of the project has been collecting the native seed to direct seed back into the Sandhills. We expect to have 80kgs and have collected 12 different plant species that traditionally occur on pine sandhills.
“Landholders who are involved in the project have fenced off areas of sandhill, eradicated rabbits and controlled boxthorn. This gives the seeds that will be direct seeded after the first winter break the best chance of survival.”
Andrea is expecting the project to be beneficial for landholders and the environment.
“Once the vegetation is established these areas will provide shelter and forage for livestock, the Sandhills will no longer blow during every drought, mammals and birds will return and we will have some good healthy examples of this amazing vegetation community into the future,” Andrea said.
Landholders or groups looking for further information on this program, can contact Andrea Cashmere on 0417 050 138 or firstname.lastname@example.org
This project has been assisted by the NSW Government through its Environment Trust.
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