A forest a day! July 5: SX020G
SX20G is located in Tasmania’s iconic Styx Valley. These forests are known best for their signficant stands of tall trees. In fact, the Styx Valley is home almost 30% of Tasmania’s recorded “giant” trees (Hitchcock 2012: 98). Most notable are the Eucalpytus regnans, the tallest flowering plant in the world. Hitchcock notes that the Styx not only features giant trees, but also provides the right ecological conditions for potential future giants (Hitchcock 2012: 98).
One of the key reasons why this area should be protected is to maintain regional connectivity. As it is a major node in the corridor of globally significant eucalypt forests stretching north-south (Hitchcock 2012: 96).
This forest features tall eucalypts with a diverse understorey. Extensive stands of myrtle and celery-top pine are present.
This coupe is also within an area mapped as potential grey goshawk habitat. This species is listed as Endangered (Tasmanian Threatened Species Protection Act 1995), due to the continuing decline of mature individuals (FPA 2008: 10). According to the Forest Practices Authority a high proportion of the core habitat for this species is in areas that are not protected (FPA 2008:10). Goshawks generally prefer forest with a closed canopy and low stem density, particularly during nesting season. While further study needs to be done on their hunting patterns, it is believed that interconnecting forest areas of 20-30km squared are required to sustain a population and that mature wet forests are their prefered hunting areas. The Forest Practises Authority also states that “one of the key threats for the grey goshawks is widespread native vegetation clearance” (FPA 2008: 10).
While SX20G is within the 430,000 hectares due to be in a conservation agreement in August last year, the coupe remains open for logging. This coupe is being logged to produced saw logs and veneer (Hoffman 2011: 8). Logging has not begun in this coupe, and there is still time to ensure that this forest is protected.
Please CLICK HERE and take a moment to help defend Tasmania’s forests.
FPA (2008) FPA Planning Guide 2008/1
Hitchcock (2012) IVG Report 5A: Verification of the Heritage Value of ENGO proposed Reserves [View online]
Hoffman, O. 23 December 2011 Rescheduling Work – January and February 2012, As requested by The Australian Government 21 November 2012 [View online]