Land for Wildlife

The Land for Wildlife scheme (LFW) was established in Tasmania in 1998. Participation in this conservation scheme is voluntary, free, and non-binding. The LFW scheme aims to encourage, support and recognise landowners who are taking a positive approach to the integration of property land management with nature conservation on private land.

A large proportion of Tasmania's wildlife species and habitat types which are poorly reserved on public land occur on privately owned land. Protecting a diverse range of habitats today will assist in reducing the risk of species becoming threatened in the future. Properties registered with the LFW scheme can make a valuable contribution to protecting our wildlife species and habitats. The LFW scheme is generally interested in areas that are greater than two hectares in size.

As at July 2018, there were around 991 LFW agreements in Tasmania covering 58,456 hectares.

Benefits

Benefits of membership to the LFW scheme include:
  • On-site assessment to provide information and advice on habitats and species;
  • Practical advice and technical notes on land management;
  • A book which provides information on native fauna and their habitats;
  • A regular newsletter; and
  • A durable, attractive sign to indicate your membership in the scheme.


 

Eagle eyed Wedge-tailed eagle

Juvenile Wedge-tailed Eagle

 

Juvenile wedge-tailed eagle showing the wedge-shaped tail
Photo: W.E. Brown, Lucaston, TAS

Wedge-tailed eagles are Australia‚Äôs largest raptor, or bird of prey, but it is the Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle species Aquila audax fleayi which is the largest of all in Australia, with a wing span that can reach 2.3 m.  As is typical for raptors - females are markedly larger and heavier than males. 

Wedge-tailed eagles nest

Wedge-tailed eagle nest
Phote: Iona Mitchell

They have specific nesting requirements, needing large trees on sheltered slopes in forested areas.  The nest may be used repeatedly and added to each year, some nests are up to 2.5 m in width.

They pair for life and their courting never really ceases, though it intensifies in early spring when the pair will soar high in the sky in a circular flight path.  Wedge-tailed eagles use the updrafts of thermals or hillslopes to rise effortlessly, rarely needing to flap their huge wings.  They soar very high in great circles up to 2 km in the sky.  Pairs often engage in aerobatic displays to advertise their territory to competitors.

Even though wedge-tailed eagles are protected by law, they still face pressure from loss of habitat due to land clearing, tree felling, and vandalism.  Other threats to their survival include collisions with power or fence lines, and wind turbines, electrocution, and some have been found shot.  More information about these magnificent birds can be found at www.threatenedspecieslink.tas.gov.au/Pages/Wedge-tailed-Eagle.aspx.

In Tasmania wedge-tailed eagles are listed as endangered.  Information gathered primarily in the 80s and 90s indicated that there could be less than 1,000 wedge-tailed eagles in Tasmania, and declining.  However, there is no information on current numbers, and whether this decline has continued.  The Bookend Trust has created an initiative called Nature Trackers which seeks to educate and provide students and the community with inspiration to learn more about the natural environment by contributing to citizen science projects to monitor threatened species.  Where? Where? Wedgie! is the first initiative of Nature Trackers with the aim of updating our information on wedge-tailed eagle numbers and conservation needs.  More information about this project and to follow progress can be found on the web site www.naturetrackers.com.au

 

Tall dead trees are favoured perch sites

Tall dead trees are favoured perch sites ...
Photo: Iona Mitchell

Wedge-tailed eagle swoop from perch site

From which to swoop from
Photo:  Iona Mitchell


 



 

 

 

 

 

 

 - Iona Mitchell and Clare Hawkins      

 

To learn more about these important and beautiful birds, read the full version of this article in the June 2018 edition of The Running Postman newsletter:

  Running Postman Newsletter No. 25 June 2018   (2Mb)

 

 
 


Additional Information

Judy Westbrook and kids

 

LFW members.
Photo by Peter Tonelli

The Running Postman and previous Land for Wildlife newsletters are now available online.

If you live in an urban or suburban area the Gardens for Wildlife scheme may interest you.

How to apply

If you would like more information about LFW, please complete and return the Expression of Interest form.

  Land for Wildlife Expression of Interest   (43Kb)

Contact

Land for Wildlife
Iona Mitchell
GPO Box 44
Hobart TAS 7001
Phone: 03 6165 4409
Email: Iona.Mitchell@dpipwe.tas.gov.au

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