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Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project

About the project

The Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project stretches along the western edge of the Blue Mountains escarpment from the Capertee Valley in the north to the Tuglow River in the south. The region is rich in biodiversity values and supports a unique array of native plants and animals.

The project helps landholders manage these values by protecting and enhancing the condition and connectivity of native vegetation and ecosystems on their property.

This will be achieved through management of threatening processes, assisted regeneration and targeted revegetation.

Project sites can support terrestrial, riparian and wetland vegetation within the area identified in the project area map (jpeg 1425KB).

Through this project landholders receive financial and technical support to improve infrastructure and management of this vegetation with the aim of improving its condition and resilience to future climate change.

Project sites that address one or more of the following are prioritised:

  • projects that contain threatened species habitat or threatened vegetation communities
  • projects on high value waterways
  • projects which are cost effective and provide good  outcomes
  • projects adjacent to high value biodiversity assets such as the Greater Blue Mountains World Heritage Area.

What sort of assistance is available?

The Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project provides funding for:

  • threat management to enhance the condition of native vegetation including:
    • control of invasive environmental weeds
    • minor erosion control works
    • stock exclusion (including alternative stock watering points if required)
  • supplementary planting to improve native diversity
  • activities that improve the habitat value of the site (for example, installation of nesting boxes)
  • revegetation with native plants using either tubestock or direct seeding
  • site preparation and maintenance
  • fencing to protect revegetation from stock.

Project standards

Current contractual arrangements Landholders with current Central Tablelands Local Land Services agreements or from Catchment Management Authorities must have completed their contractual obligations.

Project implementation time All project works must be completed within 18 months of the contract start date.

Stock-proof fencing All fencing must be managed in a stockproof condition for at least 10 years. Conventional fencing must be a minimum of six lines, electric fencing a minimum of three lines. Hot wires for electric fencing must be at least 300 mm from ground level to allow for movement of wildlife and minimise shorting potential. All fencing must be at least 10 m from top of bank, with an average of 20 m, when fencing creeks or drainage lines. Boundary fencing is ineligible for funding.

Guarantee of management All stock access to the project site must be controlled for the length of the management agreement (including access from either side of the waterway during periods of low flow). Stock are to be excluded from revegetation areas for the length of the agreement (10 years) to allow plants to establish.

Grazing management The grazing strategy should maximize ground cover and be appropriate for the site. Strategic grazing will be allowed in projects without revegetation. Total stock exclusion will result in higher project score

Alternative stock water supply Available only where stock access to water will be lost because of project works (for example, project fencing has removed access to a creek or dam). Funding is limited to a maximum of one alternative watering point per paddock affected. Major farm water supplies will not be funded under this activity.

Permits and Approvals All relevant permits and approvals for farm water supply dams must be obtained from or approved by appropriate government agencies prior to the commencement of any works.

Exotic plant and pest animal control All pest animals and exotic plants must be controlled on the site for the duration of the agreement.

Monitoring and evaluation Applicants are required to adhere to and maintain annual monitoring records for 10 years, as per the Central Tablelands Local Land Services monitoring program. Project sites must be made available for scientific monitoring activities as organised by Central Tablelands Local Land Services.

Field day activities Applicants must either make their activity site available for Central Tablelands Local Land Services to conduct educational field day activities or provide information for case studies.

Revegetation Planting corridors must provide an average minimum width of 20 m (excluding infrastructure areas). Corridors should link two areas of remnant vegetation with a minimum size of one hectare. Planting densities should be a minimum of 200 and a maximum of 400 seedlings per hectare for woodland and a minimum 300 and a maximum 600 seedlings per hectare for forest.

Site preparation Weed control measures will involve a minimum of two targeted applications of knock down herbicide to prepare sites for direct seeding and/or seedling planting. As a guide, at least 12 months weed control activities should be undertaken to prepare a site. Planting activities will be organised by the landholder once weed control activities have been implemented.

Species selection All plants must be native species grown from seed collected as locally as possible. Seed for direct seeding must be native, be collected from locations as close to the site as possible and reflect the species that would naturally be found at the site. Species will be chosen by Central Tablelands Local Land Services with a minimum of three canopy, three mid-storey and three ground-cover species for tubestock planting and a minimum of three canopy and three mid-storey for direct seeding. Any changes to species lists due to stock availability should be done in consultation with the Local Land Services.

Species survival A minimum of 50% survival rate for tubestock planting must be achieved by the landowner. The installation of additional plantings to achieve this survival rate will be the responsibility of the landowner.

Protected regrowth Projects funded under the revegetation stream will result in the native vegetation within the project area being classified as 'protected regrowth'. Protected regrowth requires consent to clear under the NSW Native Vegetation Act 2003.

Legislative requirements Applicants should be aware of and comply with their legal responsibilities under legislation relevant to the project.

Project fact sheet (743KB PDF)


More information

Huw Evans

E. huw.evans@lls.nsw.gov.au

P. 02 6350 3117