Tackling the dieback dilemma: Take part in online survey

18th Apr 2016

Submitted by Northern Tablelands Local Land Services 

A new research project has been launched looking for the causes and solutions to the devastating problem of tree dieback on the Northern Tablelands.

The first step in the project is a call for landholders across the Northern Tablelands to complete an online survey about how the tree cover is faring on their properties.

“Dieback is the continuing deterioration of the eucalypt canopy which eventually results in the death of trees and a reduction in total tree cover in the landscape, with detrimental consequences for both the natural environment and primary production,” explained David Carr from the Armidale Tree Group.

“We want landholders and people in the community to get involved and tell us where trees are dying, but also to let us know where native vegetation is looking healthy and thriving.”

“We’re trying to get baseline data about where dieback is occurring and what might be causing it. The more people we can get to fill in the online survey, the better the information we’ll have on the true extent of the problem.”

Landholders and others who would like to contribute to the Dieback Monitoring project can fill in the online survey at www.armidaletreegroup.org.au/educational-resources.

Project officer Danielle Anderson can also be contacted on 0472 743 919 or email diebacksurvey@armidaletreegroup.org.au

The Armidale Tree Group is driving the ‘Community Dieback Monitoring’ project with assistance from Northern Tablelands Local Land Services. “In the 70s and 80s there was extensive dieback, which saw the loss of millions of hectares of trees in Northern NSW,” said David.

“In the late 80s the situation seemed to stabilise but there now appears to have been a resurgence in the problem. We have had a lot of people telling us that in recent years dieback has become much worse.”

“It’s been a long time since research has been done on this issue and we really need to get better data about what is going on, where it’s happening, and whether it’s associated with particular types of land use. We know that planting trees and shrubs can help replace lost vegetation, so we’ll also be using this data to work out where we most need to focus revegetation work to counter the impact of dieback,” said David.

The Armidale Tree Group has received $5000 in funding as part of the Northern Tablelands Local Land Services Small Community Partnerships Grants program aimed at supporting community driven sustainable agricultural and environmental projects across the Northern Tablelands

The ‘Community Dieback Monitoring’ project is part of the $25 million of National Landcare Programme investment that Local Land Services is delivering to boost farm gate productivity and improve environmental health across NSW.

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