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Reminder: The dangers of illegal tree felling

A recent incident of illegal felling between Forbes and Bedgerebong is not only detrimental to the environment, but put both the offenders and general public in danger.

Central West Local Land Services Senior Field Officer Terry South witnessed firsthand the impacts of illegal activities on Travelling Stock Reserves (TSRs) in the region.

“Illegal firewood collectors attempted to progressively fell limbs off a very large, standing, dead tree” Terry said.

“The limbs were very high off the ground, and a chainsaw has been used at height to successfully remove one limb.”

Terry said the tree was damaged and could have toppled at any time, as it appeared that the chainsaw became lodged, forcing the offenders to use an aluminium wedge to assist with removal.

Field Officer on site Terry South deemed the public area unsafe and constructed a temporary barricade to warn TSR visitors of the danger.

“I couldn’t just leave it like that but I wasn’t suitably equipped to remove the hazard myself” Terry said.

Local Arborist Tony McManus was contacted to assess the area and fell the tree, with timber donated to local charities.
“It’s amazing no-one was hurt,” Terry said.

“I have worked on TSRs in the Southern part of the region for the past seventeen years and illegal activities, such as tree felling, seem to be steadily increasing.” Terry added.

If caught, offenders can be fined in excess of $4,000 for illegal activities such as collection of wood on TSRs.

Central West Local Land Services is responsible for the care, control and maintenance of over 100,000 hectares of TSRs across the region.

Rangers and Senior Field Officers like Terry are the boots on the ground, conducting maintenance and continually monitoring these valuable parcels of land for condition to reduce the risk of degradation and allow for recovery when the rains come.

For further information about travelling stock reserves and their usage, please contact your local Ranger on 1300 795 299.

ENDS

Media Contact: Fiona Townsend, fiona.townsend@lls.nsw.gov.au 0428 284 252