Nature conservation

Biodiversity Reform

Darling Riverine Plains - conservation status analysis

This page shows the conservation status of the bioregion, based on protection of landscapes within formal conservation management mechanisms.

The numbered landscapes referred to in the text are described briefly in the table at the bottom of the page. These landscapes were identified in the State Conservation Monitoring Project. In this project, a total of 1167 landscapes were described, combining three layers: ruggedness, geology and subregions.

Landscape-scale conservation

The Darling Riverine Plains Bioregion is composed of 67 landscapes (NPWS in prep). One landscape, Landscape 51, dominates the bioregion, occupying an area of 3,788,000.00 hectares or 40.34 per cent of the bioregion. Another landscape, Landscape 311, occupies a further 18.92 per cent of the bioregion and 10 other landscapes occupy between one and 5 per cent of the bioregional area.

Landscapes are not comprehensively reserved (as national parks or nature reserves) or represented in other conservation mechanisms. Seventeen of the 67 landscapes are represented in the reserve system. Wildlife refuges and property agreements add to the variety of landscapes included in some form of conservation management regime. The one flora reserve and one voluntary conservation agreement expand the area of one landscape managed, but only one landscape, Landscape 762, has more than 20 per cent (31.34 per cent or 12,347.96 ha) of its area represented in conservation areas and the chief contribution is made by the less secure management of wildlife refuges.

National parks and nature reserves

Seventeen of the 67 landscapes are represented in national parks and nature reserves. This includes a small area of each of the 2 dominant landscapes, Landscape 51 and 311 (708.50 hectares or 0.02 per cent and 2,697.39 hectares or 0.15 per cent respectively). Neither has more than 20 per cent represented in the reserve system.

Voluntary conservation agreement

The one voluntary conservation agreement increases the area of Landscape 51 (18.98 ha) under conservation management in the bioregion.

Wildlife refuges

Wildlife refuges add to the landscapes included in conservation mechanisms in the bioregion. Twenty-seven landscapes are representedin the wildlife refuge program. Twelve of these are not reserved and are not represented in other conservation mechanisms. These include:

  • Landscape 375 with 55.68 hectares or 2.23 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 405 with 14.66 hectares or 0.10 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 152 with 1369.36 hectares or 0.95 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 120 with 1375.98 hectares or 16.99 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 308 with 1989.92 hectares or 5.77 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 309 with 2160.24 hectares or 1.57 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 310 with 3475.36 hectares or 3.20 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 516 with 4161.96 hectares or 6.51 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 520 with 6654.79 hectares or 15.16 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 513 with 15098.05 hectares or 9.85 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 512 with 32681.03 hectares or 16.37 per cent of its bioregional area; and
  • Landscape 119 with 46061.99 hectares or 9.10 per cent of its bioregional area.

Although also represented in the reserve system, a relatively large proportion of Landscape 762 (10,391.38 hectares or 26.37 per cent) is represented in the wildlife refuge program.

Flora reserve

A small area (14.62 ha) of one landscape, Landscape 51 (already profiled), is included in the flora reserve.

Property agreements

Three landscapes are represented in the conservation zone of property agreements. These are:

  • Landscape 311 (already profiled), 341.55 hectares or 0.02 per cent of its bioregional area;
  • Landscape 323, 59.55 hectares or 0.02 per cent of its bioregional area; and
  • Landscape 347, 20.01 hectares or 0.16 per cent of its bioregional area.

Landscape 347 is not included in any other conservation regime in the bioregion.

Conservation and clearing

Almost half (41 per cent or 3,850,700 ha) of the Darling Riverine Plains Bioregion has been cleared of its native canopy vegetation. Clearing is not uniformly distributed across all landscapes, and 21 of the 68 landscapes have not experienced this type of clearing. Five landscapes have experienced extreme levels of clearing of greater than 70 per cent of their original area. These are:

  • Landscape 416 with 600 hectares or 75.00 per cent of its area cleared;
  • Landscape 332 with 2,800 hectares 75.68 per cent of its area cleared;
  • Landscape 350 with 8,000 hectares or 78.43 per cent of its area cleared;
  • Landscape 536 with 700 hectares or 87.50 per cent of its area cleared; and
  • Landscape 74 with 4,300 hectares or 87.76 per cent of its area cleared.

A further 8 landscapes are highly cleared, with between 50 and 70 per cent of their area cleared of native canopy and an additional 2 have greater than 30 per cent of their area cleared of native canopy.

Of those high to extremely cleared landscapes, 3 have some representation in nature reserves in the bioregion (311, 51 and 54), 2 are included in wildlife refuges (311 and 51) and 2 (311 and 347) in the conservation zone of property agreements. All landscapes lacking at least minimal representation in high-security conservation (national parks, nature reserves and flora reserves) are a priority for conservation. The remaining vegetated areas of highly cleared landscapes are a priority for conservation action, including restoration, particularly if further clearing activity within unprotected areas of these landscapes is likely.

Profiles of landscapes referred to above
Landscape numberDescription
51
Landscape 51 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western alluvials (inactive) occurring in subregion DRP4 - Macintyre - Weir Fan, Castlereagh-Barwon.
119
Landscape 119 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western alluvials (inactive) occurring in subregion DRP3 - Warrambool-Moonie.
120
Landscape 120 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of sedimentary (fine grain-non calcareous) occurring in subregion DRP3 - Warrambool-Moonie.
152
Landscape 152 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western floodplains (active) occurring in subregion DRP4 - Macintyre - Weir Fan, Castlereagh-Barwon.
308
Landscape 308 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of inland plain sediments occurring in subregion DRP6 - Louth Plains.
309
Landscape 309 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western alluvials (inactive) occurring in subregion DRP6 - Louth Plains.
310
Landscape 310 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western floodplains (active) occurring in subregion DRP6 - Louth Plains.
311
Landscape 311 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western alluvials (inactive) occurring in subregion DRP5 - Bogan-Macquarie.
323
Landscape 323 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western floodplains (active) occurring in subregion DRP5 - Bogan-Macquarie
347
Landscape 347 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of continental colluvial/residual deposits occurring in subregion DRP5 - Bogan-Macquarie
375
Landscape 375 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of acid igneous intrusives occurring in subregion DRP5 - Bogan-Macquarie.
405
Landscape 405 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of sedimentary (fine grain-non calcareous) occurring in subregion DRP5 - Bogan-Macquarie.
512
Landscape 512 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western alluvials (inactive) occurring in subregion DRP7 - Wilcannia Plains.
513
Landscape 513 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western floodplains (active) occurring in subregion DRP7 - Wilcannia Plains.
516
Landscape 516 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of inland sand dunes occurring in subregion DRP7 - Wilcannia Plains.
520
Landscape 520 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of inland plain sediments occurring in subregion DRP7 - Wilcannia Plains.
762
Landscape 762 is an area of low ruggedness with a dominant geology of western floodplains (active) occurring in subregion DRP9 - Great Darling Anabranch.

Page last updated: 26 April 2016