Respect when you prospect
Since Europeans set foot on Australian soil they have been obsessed with finding minerals. For many that dream is still alive today.
Aside from mining companies, there are people who like to spend their holidays or retirement out in the bush with a detector in hand, looking for any riches they can find.
There are many places outside of the cities where prospectors like to wander, searching for the patch of ground that might yield riches from the soil.
Old mining towns, some of them abandoned, are often favoured territory of the prospector. Pastoral leases are another popular place to explore for minerals, especially if there are records of mining on the property from many years ago.
Generally we don’t have a problem with prospectors trying their luck on our place. Most people understand the usual rules of camping away from windmills, not bogging up tracks if it is wet, taking away rubbish and, most importantly, contacting the property owner/manager to let them know they are wanting to access their property.
However, lately I have noted a certain arrogance creeping into phone calls I receive.
Instead of a call that begins “my name is Joe Blog and I’d like to visit your property to do some prospecting in a week’s time. Would this be all right? If so is there anything we can bring you?”, some recent calls have been along the lines of, “Hi, my name is Joe Blog and I’m coming on to your property next week to prospect and just wanted to let you know”. This sort of attitude gets up my nose and gives prospectors a bad reputation.
Asking isn’t just about courtesy, it is about safety and our work program.
We could have shooters on the property, we may be mustering, the tracks may be too wet or it just isn’t convenient for any number of reasons. We aren’t trying to be awkward.
If it’s possible we’ll say so — we’ll even help you with suggestions where to go and show you the station map. Remember this place is our business but also our home. Please respect this.