National Reserve System and Nature’s Gifts

Dr Graeme L. Worboys AM is a former Honorary Associate Professor at the Fenner School of Environment and Society, Australian National University & Bruce Gall is a former Director of the Queensland National Parks and Wildlife Service.

This article is the third in an 8-part series discussing our nature’s gifts.

The National Reserve System is a strategic, science-based collaboration between Australia’s nine jurisdictions to conserve the nation’s biodiversity. The NRS now includes over 13,000 protected areas; we’ve come a long way since The National Park (now Royal) was created in 1879.

World Wetlands Day 2022

Trip Report: Lake Belvedere at Bicentennial Park, Sydney

Brian Everingham, President, NPA Southern Sydney Branch

On World Wetlands Day it seemed appropriate that the entire morning in the field was spent under umbrellas, warding off the misty rain and peering through the haze. Even more appropriately, given the amount of rain that has fallen over NSW this summer, many of the birds we would expect to see here had decided to go elsewhere. Well, why not! For example, the Red-necked Avocets were nowhere to be seen!

Why all this fuss about a moth?

Dr Penelope Greenslade, School of Science, Psychology and Sport, Federation University

The Bogong moth has just been listed as endangered by the International Union for Conservation of Nature and put on their Red List, but why? On a first impression the moth is not particularly attractive, unlike the endangered Ulysses swallowtail butterfly, as it is smaller and a nondescript brown in colour. Nor does it provide economic benefits as does another moth, the silkworm. Its existence is not threatened by any disease nor is it harvested for food any longer. Quite the opposite, as the moth is considered by some as a nuisance, as at certain times of year, large numbers were attracted to lights in cities like Canberra, entering houses and offices where they cluster in nooks and crannies to the consternation of the inhabitants who hasten to destroy them. It also can be a pest of crops such as cotton and wheat where the caterpillars cause damage and are controlled by the application of insecticides.

National Parks and Nature’s Gifts 

Bruce Gall is a former Director of the Queensland National Parks and Wildlife Service & Dr Graeme L. Worboys AM, is a former Honorary Associate Professor, Fenner School of Environment and Society, Australian National University

This article is the second in an 8-part series discussing our nature’s gifts.

National parks and other protected areas secure many of our nature’s gifts, though this was not the primary intention of our first parks.

Thanks to its pre-federation colonies, Australia was a world leader in the establishment of national parks. Following America’s creation of Yellowstone in 1872, a further 14 national parks were established globally to 1900, of which six were by colonial governments: NSW (2), South Australia (1), Victoria (2) and Western Australia (1). The balance of these historic declarations was by Canada (3), New Zealand (2) and the USA (3).