Rangers wrap up weed con­trol pro­gram

Pilbara News - - News - Tom Zaun­mayr

A three-year in­va­sive weed con­trol pro­gram on Yind­jibarndi coun­try has wrapped up with great suc­cess for a widely lauded in­dige­nous ranger team.

From 2012-15, the Ngur­rawaana Rangers used chain­saws and chem­i­cal spray­ing to tackle parkin­so­nia on the Ier­a­mu­gadu lease, where their home of Ngur­rawaana is.

Last year the rangers were in­tro­duced to the lat­est CSIRO method of in­fect­ing parkin­so­nia with a fun­gus which would kill its roots and 99 per cent of seeds within a 50m ra­dius of the tree.

With help from the Pil­bara Messquite Man­age­ment Com­mit­tee, the team worked from Gre­gory’s Gorge on the Fortes­cue River up through Dog­ger’s Gorge and into the eastern side on Mill­stream Chi ch­ester Na­tional Park.

It is es­ti­mated the team walked about 80km.

Ngur­rawaana head ranger Kings­ley Wood­ley said the tire­less work car­ry­ing gear through heavy veg­e­ta­tion had been re­ward­ing.

“At the end of 2016 it was a good feel­ing to know with the rangers we fin­ished treat­ing the parkin­so­nia on our lease,” he said.

Over the years the ranger pro­gram has op­er­ated on a small bud­get boosted by funds from Ran­ge­lands and State nat­u­ral re­source man­age­ment groups, Pil­bara Cor­ri­dors and the Yind­jibarndi Abo­rig­i­nal Cor­po­ra­tion.

YAC con­ser­va­tion man­ager Os­tiane Mas­siani said the rangers’ at­ti­tude had been im­pres­sive.

“The rangers proved to be tena­cious over the years for the ter­rain was dif­fi­cult, crowded, very heav­ily veg­e­tated with a lot of crawl­ing un­der and over, hard walk­ing through thick bush, fallen trees and across wa­ter,” she said.

Ms Mas­siani said the Ngur­rawaana Rangers de­served a lot of re­spect for what they had achieved.

Pic­ture: Os­tiane Mas­siani

Mem­bers of the Ngur­rawaana Rangers tackle a parkin­so­nia tree.

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