July 2015
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Dear Reader

The news this month is largely about collaboration and knowledge sharing to improve land management and how new skills are being put to practice.

With large parts of the rangelands under pastoral lease, we've supported several initiatives to build capability in sustainable pastoralism. From cattle calming to rangelands rehydration, new techniques are being tested and refined, with encouraging results.
 
We share some interesting results from carbon stock surveys in the WA rangelands.
 
Our Program Manager (Desert and Pilbara), Chris Curnow, was honoured to join celebrations of the dedication of the Matuwa and Kurrara Kurrara Indigenous Protected Area which connects desert country across Western Australia, the Northern Territory and South Australia.
 
In Broome, science talks aim to engage community in efforts to conserve and protect natural environments.  
 
Until next month.

Rangelands NRM Communications Team.
Connect and share

  

Carbon and Climate Change

Potential for remote-sensing techniques to measure carbon abatement

Survey data indicated that trees contribute the most biomass and have the most contained carbon of the vegetation forms, highlighting potential for remote sensing techniques to be employed to estimate carbon stocks over vast areas of the rangelands.
 
Several land systems in the mulga shrublands of Western Australia’s (WA) Murchison region were surveyed to provide scientific information to land managers on the distribution of and potential for sequestered carbon.
 
[Read more]
Pastoralism

Three projects to help Kimberley pastoralists improve land management

Kimberley pastoralists are trialing sustainable land management techniques to protect their natural resource and improve management of key improved pasture.

Three projects in the Kimberley have received six months of support from Rangelands NRM to undertake trials of innovative practices to improve the condition of the land.

[Read more

Natural sequence farming expert lends a hand on Pilbara stations 

Peter Andrews, a grazier from rural New South Wales who developed Natural Sequence Farming methods visited five pastoral stations in the Pilbara this month to help identify, plan and construct on-ground works to reduce erosion and increase rehydration of the land.

Peter visited Limestone, Warrawagine, Wallal Downs, De Grey and Yarrie stations over eight days and gave a public talk in Port Hedland on Friday 10 July.

[Read more

Lessons in lowering stock stress to boost productivity on Gascoyne stations 

Thirteen pastoralists from Western Australia’s Gascoyne region attended a two-day Stress Free Stockmanship course at Carey Downs station last month.

The course, sponsored by Rangelands NRM with funding from the Australian Government, aimed to inform and upskill participants in the theory and practice of lowering the livestock stress levels in order to optimise production potential.

[Read more
 

Kimberley Cattlemen's Association sets up to support sustainable growth

The Kimberley Cattlemen's Association (KCA) has appointed an Executive Officer, Gill Stassen, who will play a vital role in the development of the cattle industry in the region.
 
Rangelands NRM is funding the position through the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.
 
[Read more]
Coastal Projects

Secrets of Marine Stingers

With Irukandji and Box jellyfish known to be present in Broome’s waters, the next Science on the Broome Coast talk on 19 August will see Australian Marine Stinger Advisory Director Dr Lisa-Ann Gershwin, present an overview of the main stingers which are found in the waters of the Broome region, tricks and tips for enjoying the water without getting stung, and the myths and truths about stingers.

Hear Lisa at: Pigram Garden Theatre (Broome Civic Centre), 27 Weld Street, Broome on Wednesday 19 August from 6-7pm. 

Science on the Broome Coast is an initiative of the Roebuck Bay Working Group (RBWG) and Yawuru Land and Sea Unit. The talks are sponsored by Inspiring Australia, Rangelands NRM, WA Marine Science Institution and Broome Shire.

[More info from Roebuck Bay Working Group

Indigenous

Ngadju going from strength to strength managing the Great Western Woodlands

A team of Ngadju people are putting new land management and conservation skills to practice to manage  their country, much of the Great Western Woodlands (GWW) of Western Australia.

The 16 million hectare GWW is the largest remaining area of intact Mediterranean-climate woodland on Earth.

[Read more

Water monitoring to inform land management on Roebuck Plains

Yawuru Traditional Owners have undertaken preliminary work for groundwater monitoring across Yawuru Country, near Broome, Western Australia, with a view to establishing a long-term monitoring regime in the area.

The groundwater project is supported by Rangelands NRM with funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Programme.

[Read more]

Desert Rangelands

New Indigenous Protected Area connects desert land managers from WA, NT and SA

The Wiluna Martu celebrated the dedication of the Matuwa and Kurrara Kurrara Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) this month with more than 200 people from the Wiluna and District communities, Wiluna Martu Traditional Owners and other invited guests and partners gathering in remote Western Australia.

Nearly 600,000 hectares of land was dedicated as the country’s 69th IPA on 3 July 2015 at the event organised by the Central Desert Native Title Service (Central Desert), on behalf of the registered native title body corporate Tarlka Matuwa Piarku (Aboriginal Corporation) and the Wiluna Martu people.
 
[Read more
Other News

Collaboration networks in the Fitzroy River catchment mapped

Ongoing research can help organisations involved in natural resource management (NRM) in the Fitzroy River catchment better collaborate with one another.

Funded by the Northern Australia Hub of the National Environmental Research Program (NERP), researchers from the ARC Centre of Excellence for Coral Reef Studies (James Cook University) have mapped and analysed social networks within the catchment. Rangelands NRM participated in this survey.

Postdoctoral Research Fellow Dr Jorge Alvarez-Romero from James Cook University said this can help organisations further their understanding of their collaborative networks and how they exchange information and other resources to improve NRM.

[Read more

Sponsorship opportunity for School of the Air Photo Competition

This month, Rangelands NRM launched the Kaz Collins photo competiton, open to School of the Air (SOTA) students in the Kalgoorlie, Meekatharra, Carnarvon, Port Hedland and Kimberley regions.

This year's theme is 'looking after our rangelands'.
 
In the past four years, more than 100 individual students have taken part and submitted over 650 photos to the competition! This is a great opportunity to get our kids (the future land managers of the rangelands) more conscious of the natural resources around them.
 
Please contact Teresa Belcher if you can assist with sponsorship support of this competition. [More info]
Events
29–29 July - Pilbara Bioregion Conservation Action Plan Strategic Workshop – conservation goals, strategies and priority projects. Technology Park, Bentley, WA [More info]

15–23 August - National Science Week [More info]

14–23 August 2015 Goodness – Sustainability & Innovation Festival. Geraldton, WA [More info

19 August 2015 - Science on the Broome Coast talk - 'Bilbies: Monitoring populations and research in Western Australia [
More info]

23–27 August 2015 - 6th World Conference on Ecological Restoration, Manchester, UK [More info]

26 August 2015 - ABARES Regional Outlook Conference, Geraldton, WA [
More info]

3 September 2015 - Mud and Saltwater Short Film Festival, Broome WA - [
More info]

21–23 September 2015 State NRM Conference, Mandurah, WA [More info]
 Resources

Presentations from the 2015 Australian Rangelands Society Conference in Alice Springs on YouTube

1. Dean Revell of Revell Science presented 'Rangeland Self Shepherding - A new approach to influence grazing distribution to benefit livestock, landscape and people'. [View presentation]. 

2. Linda Anderson, from the Pilbara Mesquite Management Committee (PMMC) presented 'Mining Partnerships: We can dig it' explaining how they have leveraged investments to make a big impact in weed control across tenures. [View presentation].

Both presentations were supported by Rangelands NRM with funding from the Australian Government. 

New Publication - Indigenous people and invasive weeds

Ens, E., Fisher, J. and Costello, O. (Editors) (2015) Indigenous people and invasive species: Perceptions,
management, challenges and uses. IUCN Commission on Ecosystem Management Community Report. [Download publication]
Grants and Awards

Lotteries West grants

Every year approximately 1000 not-for-profit groups share in Lotterywest Grants totalling millions of dollars raised from the sale of Lotterywest Games. Their grants support a variety of projects and organisations that improve the lives of Western Australians. [More info]

WA Regional Achievement & Community Awards

These awards aim to encourage, acknowledge and reward the valuable contributions individuals, communities and businesses are making throughout regional and rural Western Australia. Choose from seven categories, including the Landcorp Sustainability Award. Nominations close 7 August 2015. [More info]

This eNews is an initiative of the Rangelands NRM Coordinating Group which is supported by the Australian and WA State Governments.
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