Cumberland Plain restoration program
Once widespread across Sydney’s west, Cumberland Plain woodland is now critically endangered. A restoration program aims to restore this beautiful and diverse habitat and safeguard its threatened species.
Read more about Cumberland Plain restoration program
Look for Cumberland Plain woodland in the drier parts of the western Sydney Basin. You’ll find blackthorn shrubs, kangaroo grass and weeping meadow grass underfoot, and a canopy of grey box and forest red gums towering overhead.
Only 9 per cent of original Cumberland Plain woodland survives today. Reduced to small, isolated patches, it hosts species that also face a high risk of extinction, like swift parrots and regent honeyeaters. The Cumberland Plain restoration program aims to reverse this decline. Saving our Species is working with NSW National Parks, local councils, Landcare and other community groups on this 7-year conservation project.
Taming the powerful effects of fire is key. Though Cumberland Plain woodland is well adapted to fire, the wrong kinds of fire destroy it. The right kind – a mosaic of ecological burns and Aboriginal participation in community cultural burns – will help renew it.
This major restoration program will breathe new life into fragmented woodland patches across Sydney’s west. Tackling weeds, thinning trees to help large trees flourish, and regenerating bushland corridors will help expand and link up these surviving habitat ‘islands’.
It’s good news for the endangered nodding geebung and other threatened plants. Artificial tree hollows will also create more homes for eastern freetail bats, little lorikeets and masked owls. Even the humble endangered Cumberland Plain land snail will get a boost as woody debris and logs are added to the forest floor.
Increasing public understanding of this beautiful and diverse woodland’s importance will help curb illegal dumping and other threats. It will also encourage the community to protect and care for this unique woodland environment.