5 January 2012
Pest pine removal at Kurwongbah and Wappa Dams
Two separate areas of exotic pine trees will be removed near Kurwongbah and Wappa dams to help regenerate native vegetation and improve koala habitat.
Seqwater contractors will commence work in mid-January to selectively harvest ‘slash pines’ (Pinus elliotii) from the two forested area. One hectare of pine trees will be harvested south of the Kurwongbah dam spillway. Another seven hectares will be harvested from southern forests of Lake Wappa.
The fast growing slash pine tree is an introduced species which dominates native bush and displaces native fauna, including koalas. Seqwater considers harvesting the feral pine species the safest and most cost effective method of control.
Sections of Seqwater land will be closed to public access while the pine clearance work is carried out.
Public access to the reserve from Dayboro Rd will be closed for approximately one week while the pines are cut down and removed. Information signs and barriers will be placed on access tracks to part of the forest.
A fauna spotter will assist Seqwater staff to locate any koalas in the harvesting area so they can be relocated before contractors start work.
Public access will be closed to some forest areas between Lake Wappa and Kiamba Road for approximately four weeks while the pines are cut down and removed. Trucks will hall the logs out along Kiamba and Cooloolabin roads. Information signs and barriers will be placed on access tracks.
A Seqwater spokesperson says the project will provide the best chance of native tree and bush regeneration. “Protecting the koala population is important around lake Kurwongbah.
“While pine trees are valued as a resource in a plantation forestry situation, Seqwater considers these trees to be a weed because they decrease habitat quality and potentially increasing bush fire risk.”