THE City of Greater Geraldton is currently running the Biodiversity Conservation Incentives Strategy survey to get feedback from landholders on what they would like in the form of incentives to assist them with managing native vegetation on their land.
Geraldton is right in the middle of an internationally recognised biodiversity hotspot (of which there are only 34 worldwide) and is under threat from invasive weeds, feral animals, off-road vehicles and development.
With only 18% of its original vegetation left it is in a critical state when what is really needed for biodiversity conservation is for this to be 30%, for vegetation communities to be viable.
Last year the council for the City of Greater Geraldton endorsed a biodiversity strategy.
The strategy outlines the value of biodiversity and using detailed spatial and policy analysis and suggested a prioritised list of natural areas for conservation action and a comprehensive set of recommendations for mechanisms to achieve the vision for local natural areas.
Robyn Nicholas, Senior Environmental and Sustainability Officer at City Of Greater Geraldton says, “Once we’ve got feedback from the landholders a consultant will then write up a strategy incorporating those incentives”.
“The incentives could be anything from getting advice from native vegetation specialists, or it may be fencing or weed removal, it’s really up to the landholders to come up with what would be best”.
“This is all subject to funding but if we can get hold of some funds we want to know what landholders would most want to do”.
The survey was put out last week on CGG’s new online platform ‘Your City Your Say’ and they are advertising this with a display at the library and by trying to develop media interest.
“We are not wanting to tell people how to manage their bush, we’re just trying to support them and we know there are lots of people out there doing great stuff but there may be other things that could be done to enhance bushland areas”, says Ms Nicholas.
The city is seeking submissions from residents with properties on land between Coronation Beach and Greenough and east towards Mullewa.
“We are hoping to wrap up the survey in another couple of weeks and then we’ll get a consultant to write up the results”.
This is a real opportunity for private landholders in Geraldton to give feedback with regards to how they’d like support in managing their native bush.