In 2016 the NSW Government dedicated state forest areas between Bega and Bermagui as flora reserves under the Forestry Act 2012. In a unique arrangement, the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has been appointed land manager for these reserves.
The main reason for this arrangement is to conserve the south coast’s last known koala (Phascolarctos cinereus) population and extend the protection of a natural and cultural landscape incorporating Biamanga and Gulaga National Parks, both of which are Aboriginal owned and managed by a majority Aboriginal owner board of management through an Aboriginal ownership and leaseback agreement.
Flora reserves offer similar conservation and public use benefits to those offered through the park system managed by the NPWS. The management and actions included in this working plan aim to integrate the Murrah Flora Reserves with adjoining land uses. This includes basic stewardship activities such as managing roads, pests, weeds, fire, visitor facilities, visitor safety and boundary issues, as well as specific actions to improve koala habitat and promote Aboriginal cultural values and participation.
Under the Forestry Act, flora reserves must be managed for the preservation of native plants and animals in accordance with a working plan. A working plan includes information on important reserve values and provides directions for future management. The working plan is a legal document, and after the plan is adopted all operations and activities in the reserve must be in line with the plan.
This draft working plan was prepared in accordance with section 25 of the Forestry Act. After public consultation, draft plans are adopted by the Minister for Primary Industries.
Public exhibition of this draft plan provided an opportunity for the community to have a say in the future management of Murrah Flora Reserves. Submissions closed 31 January 2018.
For further information on the draft plan of management email the Planning Evaluation and Assessment Team: firstname.lastname@example.org