Northern Midlands

Environment

Tasmanian Northern Midlands has a dry subhumid cool inland lowland which lies in the Tamar graben - an extensive plain bordered in the east and west by hilly topography developed on Jurassic and Tertiary igneous rocks and Permian mudstone.

Soils of the Northern Midlands are diverse and predominantly sandy, supporting a long history of agriculture, with some forestry. The region’s extensive grazing lands are renowned for fine wool production, while the fertile river flats generate a range of high quality produce.

The region also supports a divers range vegetation communities including rare and threatened flora and fauna. Almost 700 plants species have been identified growing in the Northern Midlands, representing nearly 30% of Tasmanian flora. Extensive natural grassy plain were common along the valley river flats and formed the heart of the Midlands. Today less than 15% of these lowland grasslands remain in good condition. Some extensive remnants form an important pastoral resource, with over half of the sheep in Tasmania grazing native pastures. Native grasslands are among the richest vegetation types in Tasmania.

Quaternary sands and alluvium carry Eucalyptus viminalis, E. pauciflora and E. ovata open forest and woodland, while Tertiary deposits are vegetated by E. amygdalina open forest and woodland. Permian mudstone and Tertiary basalt line the major fault-controlled river valleys.

The Northern Midlands Municipality is located in one of Tasmania’s lowest rainfall regions making water a valuable and sometimes scarce natural resource. Surface water resources include lakes, wetlands, lagoons, streams and rivers. The boundaries of the Municipality include the Brumbys – Lake Catchment, Macquarie Catchment which both drain into the larger South Esk Basin. There are over 200 named creeks and rivers within the region, major Rivers of the South Esk include; Nile, Elizabeth, Lake, and St Pauls.

Some of the rarest species in the Midlands are found in association with wetlands. Over 600 wetland areas have been identified within the area. Wetlands act as a breeding ground for many species of fish, waterbirds, amphibians and insects and are an important stopover points for migratory birds. Wetlands also provide a natural filtering system improving water quality. Less than 30% of the Midlands wetlands now remain and they are a conservation priority. Twelve are listed in the Directory of the Important Wetlands in Australia and ten wetlands of regional significance have been identified.

What is Natural Resource Management?

The term natural resources refers to a broad spectrum of ‘environmental assets’. These include air, water, land, plants, animals and micro-organisms. Individual assets are not isolated, however: they are linked together to form natural systems of varying scale such as rivers, lakes and wetlands, estuaries and coasts, forests, fields, geological systems and resources, and mountains.

Natural resource management reflects these linkages within and between natural systems. It integrates the management of social, economic and environmental values by involving the community and industry in planning and decision making.

Natural resource management is fundamentally about people. The success of natural resource management is ultimately determined by the level of community involvement and the adoption of ecologically sustainable practices across the community.

Natural Resource Management in Australia

Natural Resource Management has been fostered and developed in Australia over the past two decades by a number of Government programs, both Commonwealth and State, and through regional and local initiatives.

Funding assistance and support has been directed to hundreds of natural resource management projects and has encouraged broad community involvement: marshalling the commitment of community groups, land holders and land managers, all three tiers of government, as well as bodies dedicated to NRM program delivery.

Natural Resource Management (NRM) describes the sustainable management of our natural resources (our land, water, marine and biological systems). The sustainable management of natural resources is vital if we are to ensure our ongoing social, economic and environmental wellbeing.

Natural Resource Management (NRM) services are provided by Northern Midlands Council through a partnership with NRM North, the Regional NRM Organisation for Northern Tasmania.

This partnership has provided a Natural Resource Management Facilitator that is based in Longford to assist the Community.

These services take the form of:

  • support for community groups who undertake environmental activities eg Tasmanian Landcare Association;
  • property management planning (delivered via NRM North);
  • support for landholders who wish to undertake natural resource management activities such as fencing of creeks and remnant bush, revegetation and weed control;
  • advice to new landholders who wish to find out more about the environmental aspects of their land;
  • environmental monitoring; and
  • community education.

Northern Midlands Council Weed Action Plan

Contact:

Monique Case
Natural Resource Management Facilitator
0408 564 426

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