Creation of new National Parks falls 95% under Coalition

New figures released today by the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) shows the expansion of the National Park estate has almost ground to a halt since the Coalition came to power in 2011.

According to the NSW Report on Native Vegetation 2013-141 the average annual rate of National Park additions under the Coalition to 2013-14 is just 9,753ha—a 95% reduction on the previous six-year average of 173,965ha.2

The Dragons Among Us

Contributed by: James Baxter-Gilbert (PhD Student from Macquarie University, NSW)

The Australian Water dragon (Intellagama lesueurii) is a large lizard species common along the eastern coast of Australian ranging from Queensland to Victoria. There are two subspecies described: the Eastern Water Dragon (Intellagama lesueurii lesueurii) living in the northern extent of the range, and the Gippsland Water Dragon (Intellagama lesueurii howittii) living in the south1.  The males of this species are larger in size and will defend a territory, displaying a bright red chest coupled with head-bobbing and arm-waving to communicate to other males to stay away. Females will regularly mate with multiple males to ensure genetic diversity of her eggs; a single clutch of eggs may have 2-3 different fathers2 divided between 6-18 eggs.