27 September 2023

Richer maps for future fossickers

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The Department of Natural Resources, Mines and Energy has made future fossicking in the State’s gem fields easier with the release of mapping to identify the best localities.

Minister for Natural Resources, Anthony Lynham said the change would be a further drawcard once the COVID-19 pandemic was over and would act as an economic boost to Central Queensland.

“Once the Coronavirus lockdown is over and fossicking is permitted, these changes will make it easier for tourists to visit and experience some of the world’s largest sapphire fields and popular fossicking hotspots in the gem towns of Anakie, Sapphire and Rubyvale,” Dr Lynham said.

“Previously, as the area was under the generic name of ‘gem-fields’, GPS systems found it challenging to guide fossickers and tourists to our gem towns.”

He said almost 1,000 local residents had called for the clarification of localities and the confirmation of the place names change followed two months of community consultation.

“Community consultation is essential in any decision-making process and I applaud members of the Central Queensland community who took this opportunity to help shape their community’s future,” Dr Lynham said.

Currently fossicking and camping in national parks, State forests and State-managed recreation and protected areas are banned in response to the COVID-19 outbreak.

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