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Encounter Maria Island


Encounter Maria Island's new ferry Osprey V, that will allow even more visitors to enjoy one of the State's best tourism attractions, was launched today.More

Progress on Cradle Mountain Master Plan


An important milestone in the Cradle Mountain Master Plan project has been reached following a competitive tender process, with Cumulus Studio chosen to design the Cradle Mountain gateway precinct and the Dove Lake viewing shelter.More

Exciting new proposal for Tasmania's South East Cape


Award-winning local tourism operator Ian Johnstone can now progress a new project to lease and licence negotiations under the Tourism Opportunities in Tasmania's National Parks, Reserves and Crown Land process.More

Southwest National Park fire update


A large fire in the Southwest National Park remains uncontrolled but it is not having significant environmental impacts.

Parks and Wildlife Service incident controller Chris Arthur said that the fire, which has so far burnt about 49,000 hectares, was sparked by lightning on 3 January.

"This fire is natural event and although it is a landscape-scale fire, it is burning through buttongrass plains, a vegetation type adapted to regular fires. So far, no fire sensitive vegetation such as rainforest or alpine species, has been burnt," Mr Arthur said.

"This large area affected by fire has not been 'destroyed'; in fact we estimate that as much as 30 per cent of the area remains unburnt, resulting in a mosaic of burnt and natural vegetation, which is what we try to achieve with fuel reduction burns.

"This mosaic effect also means that although some of the habitat which is a food source for the critically endangered orange-bellied parrot has been affected, a significant area within the Southwest remains unburnt. Although some of the birds' potential nesting habitat has been lost, the crucial breeding area of Melaleuca has not been impacted by the fire.

"The result of this fire will in fact have a positive effect in terms of future bushfire protection. Along with recent fuel reduction burns and wildfires, there is now a very large area in the Southwest National Park that will act to significantly halt the spread of any wildfires in the next few years."

In managing this fire, Parks staff monitored the tracks in the area and more than 20 bushwalkers were relocated over a period of several days. Additionally, no infrastructure has been damaged by the fire.

The fire will continue to be monitored but is currently not active and remaining within existing boundaries.

A number of tracks remain closed including  the Port Davey Track, Old Port Davey Track, Junction Creek Track, Arthur Plains Track, Cracroft Valley Track, Blakes Opening - Huon Track and the Old River traverse. The Huon and Edgar campgrounds are also closed.

Access is still available to Melaleuca, however visitors are advised not to travel north of Melaleuca.

For the latest fire updates go the Tasmania Fire Service website, www.fire.tas.gov.au where this fire is listed as the Giblin River fire.