Heed the warning from NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service Central West area manager Fiona Buchanan, in April last year: ‘We are getting the message out there that removing firewood, including deadwood and fallen trees, is not permitted in national parks. We want people to know the rules around firewood collection…it’s important people are aware that on-the-spot fines apply but also very large fines can be handed out by the courts.’
She wasn’t bluffing. A man had earlier been fined $30,000 ($20,000 US) for illegally collecting firewood in the Murrumbidgee Valley National Park. Why? Because, as Buchanan explained: ‘Many ground-dwelling animals and threatened species use tree hollows for nesting, so when fallen trees and deadwood is taken illegally, it destroys their habitat. This fallen timber is part of these animals’ natural ecosystem.’
Those natural ecosystems are now, across thousands of hectares of national parks in New South Wales, nothing but cinders and ash. Enjoy your protected habitat, little ground-dwellers.
Needless to say, read the whole thing.