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Aboriginal Trainees Survey Heritage Sites

17/11/2005

The rich Aboriginal heritage of the Arthur Pieman Conservation Area has been a training ground for Parks and Wildlife Service Aboriginal field officer trainees this week.

The five trainees have been assessing Aboriginal heritage sites with the manager of the Tasmanian Aboriginal Land and Sea Council, Colin Hughes, and officers from the Tasmanian Aboriginal Heritage Office.

Acting PWS General Manager Andrew Roberts said the assessment served a dual purpose.

"It has been an opportunity for the trainees to develop further skills and experience in Aboriginal heritage site assessment but has also provided a comprehensive assessment of sites that may be covered by the off-road vehicle permit system being developed for the APCA," Mr Roberts said.

"The sites and Aboriginal landscapes within the Arthur Pieman Conservation Area are of international significance and display a richness of cultural heritage and relative lack of disturbance that is extremely rare.

"The impact of recreational vehicles on the coastal strip continues to degrade heritage sites, many of which are not yet fully surveyed, so a proper assessment of these sites is important for future management decisions."

During the week, the trainees walked the West Coast beaches from Temma Point south to Sandy Cape with the AHO officers and Mr Hughes.

They have recorded heritage sites and discussed possible management options for each site.

The PWS trainees are Nathan Mansell, Nathan Maynard, Todd Barrett, LJ Scotney and Teresa Grieve.

This initiative is part of the State Government's commitment to progressing Tasmania Together Goal 21 - Value, protect and conserve our natural and cultural heritage.