09 November, 2010

Be selective

Ian Davidson, Wangaratta
The Age (letter), 9 November 2010

THE end of old-growth logging in Tasmania, and in other states hopefully, is terrific news; but the Greens proposal to end all logging on public land is simplistic and provides conservation no great long-term advantage.

As an independent wildlife biologist with nearly 30 years' experience, I have come to recognise that high-value selection logging, which retains large trees in native forest, is the only land use that maintains all flora and fauna in the long term. I have been in healthy rainforests teeming with wildlife in Borneo where high-quality forest management is practised and many people are still involved and employed, without public expense.

All land requires management to control weeds and feral pests, let alone thinning our many dense regrowth forests - who will pay? By all means stop bad forestry practices, but promote uses of native vegetation that retain wildlife and ecological health, especially if they can be self-funding.

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