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Recovery Program reporting blitz

More than 60 Land and Vegetation assessment surveys across four properties are now complete after a month-long reporting blitz for Cape York NRM’s Landscape Resilience Project.

Kathrina Southwell on-country

The surveys are part of a monitoring regime across 2,500 hectares in the southern Cape York region, which feeds into knowledge surrounding drought resilience and threat mitigation activities for native vegetation. 

“It’s been an amazing effort by all of Cape York NRM staff, who pitched in to ensure assessments were finished before the wet season,” Cape York NRM’s acting Sustainable Industries and Water Quality Manager, Kathrina Southwell, said.  “We have another two to go, but the bulk of the work is now complete."

Cape York NRM has been working with six grazing properties to address priority land condition issues over 1,000 hectares and threats to native vegetation over 1,500 hectares.

The selected stations have also received a share of $180,000 to introduce long-term investments such as increased riparian fencing, reduced paddock size, weed control, and more watering points for cattle.

“A number of the properties have already moved on these actions,” Kathrina said.

“They have started to erect fencing or spell paddocks, and this all goes to improving infrastructure and making the properties less vulnerable to year-to-year changes in climate and markets.

“Landholders up here face some harsh weather events and work across vast distances, often in isolation, so this project also mixes knowledge, management and monitoring through a support system.”

The Landscape Resilience Project, funded through the  Queensland Government’s Natural Resources Recovery Program, ends in June 2024 and drew a lot of interest from properties in the region. 

“When we asked for Expressions of Interest last year, we received a record 27 applicants,” Kathrina said. “Unfortunately, we only had places for six properties, but all applications were kept on our files in the hope the program will be extended. 

“In the meantime, the site assessments will provide crucial data for Government and land managers, in policy support and on-ground improvement of soils and vegetation, and hence, business resilience, into the future.”

The Project is funded under the Queensland Government’s Natural Resources Recovery Program.