Western Queensland’s newly declared wild rivers will receive added protection under a $600,000 wild river pest and weed management package announced by the Queensland Government yesterday.
State Member for Mt Isa Betty Kiernan said feral pigs, wild dogs and invasive weeds like parthenium and parkinsonia will be targeted under the new management package to protect the wild river’s natural values.
“We know that pests and weeds are one of the biggest threats to the natural values of our wild rivers and a serious problem for landholders – this $600,000 will go a long way in dealing with that,” Ms Kiernan said.
“10 wild river rangers will also be employed to boost hands-on management of the Lake Eyre Basin’s wild rivers.
Ms Kiernan said the funding came in direct response to calls by AgForce, Desert Channels Queensland and Remote Area Planning and Development which had worked hard to develop a draft pest and weed management plan for the region.
Beef Central wrote about landholder concerns about a lack of funding for pest and weed control in the newly declared Wild Rivers protections areas of the Lake Eyre Basin last week.
Consultation with local government, Desert Channels Queensland and other organisations would soon start to determine the most efficient and effective way to deliver on-ground projects with this money.
“The package is a direct result of community feedback received during extensive community consultation on the draft wild river declarations for Cooper Creek, Diamantina and Georgina basins.
“Communities are supportive of protecting river values – but I received feedback that people were concerned about the spread of pests and weeds.
“I made sure the minister heard those concerns and she has responded to protect the Lake Eyre Basin – a truly unique system that supports many businesses and a vast array of plant and animal life.”