Supervising Scientist Report 146
Thurtell L, Finlayson CM, Yibarbuk D & Storrs MJ (collators)
Supervising Scientist, 1999
ISBN 0 642 243492
- SSR146 - The Blyth/Liverpool wetlands, Arnhem Land, northern Australia: Information for management planning (PDF - 3980 KB)
- Preliminary pages & chapter 1 (PDF - 536 KB)
- Chapters 2-3 (PDF - 669 KB)
- Chapters 4-6 (PDF - 2930 KB)
- References and appendices (PDF - 293 KB)
A large amount of information has been collected in recent decades on the coastal wetlands of northern Australia, in particular those in the wet-dry tropics. This information had been assessed for its usefulness as a resource for further wetland management activities in the wetlands of the Blyth-Liverpool rivers in central Arnhem Land. The information is presented using the guidelines for management planning developed under the Ramsar Wetlands Convention as a logical framework.
The wetlands are described in terms of their biodiversity and the values and benefits currently derived by the local communities who own and inhabit the area. The local people manage the wetlands and are keen to develop a self-sufficent economic base and maintain their traditional values. This provides them with many challenges and opportunities that they are addressing through a combination of traditional and contemporary knowledge. In doing this they have received support from a local umbrella corporation and various other agencies and organisations.
The contemporary information base for the wetlands is patchy, although much can be gleaned from adjacent areas where more scientific research has been conducted. Similarly, a great deal of information on threats and management issues can be obtained from such sources and many existing databases and reports have been identified. The threats faced by the owners and managers of the Blyth-Liverpool wetlands are currently, on the whole, less intense than in some floodplain systems further to the west, but they are very similar with weeds, feral animals and fire being amongst the most important.
The local people recognise the value of consultation and training and have initiated several productive programs involving educational institutes and governmental agencies. It is intended that such programs will increase local skills, attract external resources and provide a better base for managing the wetlands for the challenges of the future. The information base summarised in this report is one part of the management processes being developed and implemented.