Military training areas and Conservation -Unexploded Reality

To: Greg and Val Clancy <>, Robert Inglis <>, Birding-Aus <>
Subject: Military training areas and Conservation -Unexploded Reality
From: Tim Dolby <>
Date: Tue, 20 Aug 2013 07:32:57 +0000
The last time I visited Lamington NP (along the drive up to Binna Burra via 
Beechmont Rd) I saw three Black-breasted Button-quail feeding along the 
roadside. When I stopped, the birds moved off under a fence into some Lantana 
thickets (see Here a large sign on the fence read 
'Danger - Military Range. Laser hazard. Live bombs.' I thought about following 
them across the fence ... mmm...  no....  it was getting late and I needed to 
set up my tent.

The fence was the boundary of the Canungra Military Area, a large area of 
forest and schrubland. I wouldn't be surprised if it preserves perfect habitat 
for Black-breasted Button-quail. Perhaps worthy of a formal survey.


Tim Dolby

 on behalf of Greg and Val Clancy 

Sent: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 4:15 PM
To: Robert Inglis; Birding-Aus
Subject: Military training areas and Conservation     -Unexploded Reality

I have also had experience in the bombing range of north Bundjalung National
Park.  I have banded and flagged Pied Oystercatchers and Beach Stone-curlews
there and they have thrived because of the limited number of vehicles
driving on the beach.  Unfortunately bushfires appear to have virtually
wiped out the endangered population of the Coastal Emu in Bundjalung.  Only
one male was seen after a large fire a few years back but there has been one
unconfirmed report of two birds along the Gap Road.  I have to admit to
being a little nervous driving in areas that are used as a bombing range but
the air force officers in charge of the range were very professional and
other than once being buzzed by a low flying training plane on the beach we
were kept well away from the bombing aircraft.  On one occasion while
waiting for bombing activities to cease, to allow us to access the beach for
banding, we were treated to a great exhibition of strategic bombing as an
F111 (or maybe an F18) projected bombs in an arc from a few kilometres out
to sea to the target area.  I was relieved that the pilots were very
accurate as we were just a short distance to the west of the target area.
The area does have an abundance of wildlife which is partly due to the
limited access to the site, but also because of the diversity of habitat in
a region of high biodiversity.  It is worth noting that the air force is
working to close and rehabilitate unnecessary tracks cut through the heath
over the years and have removed some makeshift shacks.


Dr Greg. P. Clancy
Ecologist and Birding-wildlife Guide
| PO Box 63 Coutts Crossing NSW 2460
| 02 6649 3153  | 0429 601 960

-----Original Message-----
From: Robert Inglis
Sent: Tuesday, August 20, 2013 3:29 PM
To: Birding-Aus
Subject: Military training areas and
Conservation -Unexploded Reality

Interesting comment by Stephen Brooking about the practise bombing range at
North Bundjalung NP.

I can remember an event in that location during the 1960s when, as a
training officer, I was intimately involved in a 3” mortar live firing
exercise which was intended to provide some experience for a newly formed
Citizens Military Force Mortar Platoon based in Northern NSW.
In those days I was more interested in blowing things up than in observing
or photographing birds.

Live firing 3” mortars is always an exciting event but this time we
increased our “excitement” by setting fire to, probably, half the bombing
My excuse was that, as a junior officer, I was acting under orders.

We eventually had to evacuate our operations area.

I have no idea what damage was done to the fauna of the area but we were
never invited back.

Thinking back now I remember the area as being quite beautiful but I really
don’t think I would like to do any birdwatching there, even on the quiet

Bob Inglis
Sandstone Point

To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)


To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)
This email, including any attachment, is intended solely for the use of the 
intended recipient. It is confidential and may contain personal information or 
be subject to legal professional privilege. If you are not the intended 
recipient any use, disclosure, reproduction or storage of it is unauthorised. 
If you have received this email in error, please advise the sender via return 
email and delete it from your system immediately. Victoria University does not 
warrant that this email is free from viruses or defects and accepts no 
liability for any damage caused by such viruses or defects.

To unsubscribe from this mailing list,
send the message:
(in the body of the message, with no Subject line)

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>

The University of NSW School of Computer and Engineering takes no responsibility for the contents of this archive. It is purely a compilation of material sent by many people to the birding-aus mailing list. It has not been checked for accuracy nor its content verified in any way. If you wish to get material removed from the archive or have other queries about the archive e-mail Andrew Taylor at this address: andrewt@cse.unsw.EDU.AU