26 September 2023

Parks warn on taking firewood for the fire

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National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) has taken the fact that winter is on its way to remind residents it is illegal to collect firewood in national parks, state conservation areas and nature reserves.

With particular attention at the Central West and North West of the State, the Service’s manager of the Castlereagh Area, John Whittall said firewood collection removed important habitat homes for animals and food for forests.

“Collecting firewood, including dead wood and fallen trees, is not permitted in national park” Mr Whittall said.

“It is important that residents around Gunnedah, Coolah, Coonabarabran, Narrabri and Baradine are aware of why it is illegal and also the heavy fines that apply,” he said.

“Dead hollow-bearing trees and woody debris provide habitat for many endangered native animals including barking owls and glossy black cockatoos which live in this area.

“Illegally cutting down dead trees and removing this fallen timber for firewood destroys critical habitat that these animals depend on for survival.”

He said NPWS used surveillance cameras in parks to detect illegal activities, including firewood collection.

“On-the-spot-fines apply, and larger fines can be handed out by the courts,” Mr Whittall said.

He said firewood can be collected with a permit from some state forests or purchased from a reputable supplier.

Information on where the permits apply can be accessed at this PS News link.

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