Managing fire on WCL
The primary fire management objectives of the NPWS are to protect life and property and community assets from the adverse impacts of fire, whilst managing fire regimes to maintain and protect biodiversity and cultural heritage.
Fire is a natural feature of many environments and is essential for the survival of some plant communities. However, inappropriate fire regimes can lead to loss of particular plant and animal species and communities, and high frequency fires have been listed as a key threatening process under the TSC Act. The fire history of the WCL is only partially known. Large sections of the Worimi Conservation Lands (WCL) are thought to have been burnt regularly throughout the twentieth century. Regular hazard reduction burning was undertaken in the north-east sections of the WCL between Bobs Farm and Anna Bay prior to the WCL’s creation.
The WCL board and NPWS have prepared a reserve fire management strategy for the park. This map-based document contains risk mitigation and fire suppression information used as the basis for prescribed burn planning. In managing fire on the WCL. The fire management strategy outlines the recent fire history of the area, key assets within and adjoining the WCL including sites of natural and cultural heritage value, fire management zones, and fire control advantages such as management trails and water supply points. It also contains fire regime guidelines for conservation of the WCL’s vegetation communities.
The WCL borders semi-rural areas, except at Fern Bay where residential houses adjoin the park. Asset protection zones have been established at Fern Bay, Salt Ash, Bobs Farm and Anna Bay (OEH 2011c). NPWS maintains cooperative arrangements with surrounding landowners and the Rural Fire Service and is actively involved with the Lower Hunter Bush Fire Management Committee. Cooperative arrangements include fire planning, fuel management and information sharing. Hazard reduction programs, ecological burning proposals and fire trail works are submitted annually to the Bush Fire Management Committee.
The Board of Management is concerned to improve awareness of the cultural values of the WCL to assist in their protection during hazard reduction and fire suppression activities.
Our primary fire management objectives are to:
- protect life and property – both within parks and on immediately adjacent land
- protect and conserve natural, cultural, scenic and recreational features
- cooperate with other organisations in planning and implementing fire management.
Click here for information about fire and the NSW bush, and how the Office of Environment and Heritage manages fire in NSW national parks to protect life and property, and to conserve biodiversity.