Merimbula Letters to the Editor, January 10

Mullets for Men’s Health

Thank you for your support for our fundraising charity. The day turned out far better than expected due to your fabulous article published in December.  We had a great turnout and raised above our $3000 goal.  Thank you to the community for your support and participation in the event that raised this money for prostate cancer awareness.

Derek Richmond, Merimbula

Unauthorised clearing

I write in response to your article regarding the unauthorised clearing of coastal bushland by the North Tura Beach Residents Association (MNW, 1/1).

In the article Mr Young (secretary of the NTBRA) is quoted as saying that removal of dead material is not considered clearing.

I draw your attention to the findings of the Scientific Committee established under the Threatened Species Conservation Act. I quote the findings when they say: “The accelerated and ongoing removal of standing dead trees and woody debris on the ground caused by human activity has been recognised as a factor contributing to loss of biological diversity.”

Later the findings say: “Fallen dead wood provides important habitat for a suite of invertebrate species dependent on decaying wood for their survival. These species play an important role in recycling nutrients in forest and woodland ecosystems”

Further on: “Removal of dead old trees (either standing or on the ground) results in the loss of important habitat such as hollows and decaying wood for a wide variety of vertebrates, invertebrates and microbial species and may adversely affect...threatened species.”

Also: “Removal of dead wood and dead trees may seriously affect the long term availability and viability of habitat. Loss of fallen dead wood from open forests and woodlands will increase impacts of wind on the soil microclimate. Loss of surface moisture resulting from the removal of dead wood will affect soil organisms below fallen logs as well as changing the above ground plant cover and will impact on associated invertebrates.”

There are many scientific studies that show fallen wood is vital to the health of the forest.

It smacks of arrogance and entitlement that anyone would enter land they do not own and alter the area without reference to the owners or custodians of that land. It is astounding that any unauthorised and unqualified group would take it upon themselves to “clean up” our coastal bushland for purely aesthetic reasons without understanding the consequences of their actions. No citizen group should be allowed to claim Crown Land as their own and to act unilaterally.

The debate to be had here is whether we wish to keep remnant bush (especially along the natural water courses) as a wildlife corridor and thereby hope to maintain the health and biodiversity of the natural flora and fauna of our area for the enjoyment of all; or whether we wish to pave paradise and put up a parking lot.

I, for one, choose the former.

Greg Box,Tura Beach 

Thanks to Johnstons

And thank you Eric and Pat for your volunteer hours with the Wolumla Soccer Club and Bega High P&C, back in the late ‘80s and ‘90s. You warmly welcomed the Little boys into the Wolumla Soccer Club and helped to ensure Bega High was an inclusive and happy stamping ground for all the Valley kids. I am sorry discussions regarding the airfield, which is obviously important to the Valley, have become vindictive and personal towards Eric and Pat.

Developments must be considered on the basis of the rules and laws governing the site, along with neighbours' and community concerns. The freehold owner's reasons for selling have nothing to do with site development discussions.

Val Little, Tathra

Seeking shade: The Pambula river mouth was a beautiful oasis on Sunday, everyone enjoyed the crystal clear water. Photo: Claudia Ferguson

Seeking shade: The Pambula river mouth was a beautiful oasis on Sunday, everyone enjoyed the crystal clear water. Photo: Claudia Ferguson