Further to our post yesterday about the Land for Wildlife Significant Tree Register, it is worth mentioning the great success of Alice Springs Landcare at their annual Buffel-Busting day last weekend. Arid lands eco guru Peter Latz was on hand to give his thoughts on the scourge of Buffel and came up with some interesting insights into the role of insects as a potential biological control of the grass. You can read a bit about this here.
Buffel control is a critical issue in relation to our significant trees. Older trees, surrounded by thick growths of Buffel are at greater risk during destructive fires. One of the important messages that Landcare's weekend activities related is that Buffel control around old trees should be considered a priority, especially during a heightened fire danger season.
Buffel control is by no means a new issue, but it is certainly one that is not going to go away without a lot of hard work and ingenuity. We can't afford to become complacent about Buffel control - the cost of letting it run rampant has already been high for many landscapes and ecosystems in Central Australia.
Another interesting read is this interview with Margaret Friedel and Peter Latz from way back in 2006.