Protecting the Park from Dieback

The most significant threat to the Fitzgerald River National Park is the introduction and spread of Dieback, a disease caused by a water mould, Phytophthora cinnamomi. The Department of Parks and Wildlife advises that much of the region’s flora is highly susceptible to this disease, but in contrast to some other south coast national parks, there are currently limited occurrences in the Fitzgerald River National Park. It is well recognised that loss of vegetation to dieback will devastate the park’s conservation and recreation values.

 

Dieback is most commonly introduced and spread in infected soil, mud or moist gravel on the wheels and under-bodies of vehicles.

 

Visitors are encouraged to be mindful of this threat and to clean vehicles and footwear before entering the park, thus lowering the risk of carrying the disease from other areas.

 

Roads within the park are closed at times to minimise the risk of spreading the disease, so it is necessary to check ahead when travelling in the area. Although inconvenient, visitors are asked to understand that these decisions are made to ensure the long term viability of the park's ecosystems.

 

The Friends of the Fitzgerald River National Park are an independent community group bringing people together to appreciate this remarkable National Park.

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© 2014 by Sam Elliott.