Mesquite management in the NSW Rangelands: A history of policy, management and landholder’s perceptions

Mesquite management in the NSW Rangelands: A history of policy, management and landholder’s perceptions Conference Paper

17th Australian Rangeland Society Biennial Conference

  • Author(s): Goulton, M.
  • Published: 2012
  • Publisher: Australian Rangeland Society

Abstract: Mesquite (Prosopis spp.) is a Weed of National Significance and is declared in New South Wales under the Noxious Weeds Act 1993 (Class 2). Infestations of mesquite occur in far western NSW in varying densities over an area of approximately 680,000 ha within 3 discrete management zones to the north (200km), west (<30km) and south east (150km) of Broken Hill. The Western Catchment Management Authority has invested considerable funds in mesquite management in the region since its inception in 2005, as have previous government agencies and departments over the last 30 or so years. This paper will explore the history of the dynamics of relationships between government led initiatives and the legislative framework surrounding mesquite over this period and the impact this has had on landholder’s perceptions and attitudes towards weed management and their role in containing this weed. Further, the paper will aim to compare these observations with the corresponding growth in both the density and extent of mesquite infestations within the region, with the aim of exposing where the legislative framework and government led control initiatives may have failed or could be improved upon. The paper will examine three levels of evidence to suggest that community-driven initiatives offer the greatest chance of success in controlling invasive plant species. These include; a qualitative survey of land managers (farmers) and NRM managers (government agencies) and a review of previous government and private (landholder driven) initiatives in the region; a quantitative evaluation of the actual extent of mesquite within the region, comparing age classes of untreated individuals and evidence of previously treated ‘parent’ trees and; external case studies from other regions within Australia that have taken different approaches to managing pest plants with an emphasis on community involvement.

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Suggested Citation
Goulton, M., 2012, Mesquite management in the NSW Rangelands: A history of policy, management and landholder’s perceptions, Conference Paper, viewed 13 August 2022, https://www.nintione.com.au/?p=3665.

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