Notification: Parks and Wildlife Service is part of the new Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA).

roadside-boyup-brook
Roadside - Boyup Brook
Photo © Kylie Payne/Parks and Wildlife

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Roadside vegetation plays an important role in the conservation of Western Australia’s plants and animals. In heavily cleared landscapes, the vegetation in the road reserve acts as a wildlife highway, enabling animal movement between large patches of bush. It also provides essential habitat. In some areas rare animals, such as the Carnaby’s cockatoo, breed in the hollows of roadside trees. In addition, more than 50 per cent of threatened plants have at least one population on a roadside, and some species depend on roadside vegetation for their continued existence.

Community well-being

Roadside vegetation has benefits for local communities. It provides farmers with shade and shelter for their animals and crops, and prevents soil erosion. The visibility of roadside vegetation can provide locals with a defined sense of place based on easily identifiable characteristics they recognise as “home”.

Science

Roads cut across the landscape, from the top of hills, down slopes, over creeks at the bottom of valleys, and back up hills on the other side. This gives a cross section of vegetation communities within the landscape that are not necessarily available in the few remaining, discrete, pockets of bush found in the heavily cleared parts of the State. Land managers can use this to guide the selection of species for revegetation projects that aim to recreate the original vegetation.

Recognition of roadside vegetation values

The value of roadside vegetation was formally recognised in the 1960s by the then Premier of Western Australia, the Hon. David Brand. He ensured that all new roads in country Western Australia would have road reserves of at least 40 metres, wider than that needed for transport purposes. These wide road reserves would fulfil dual roles: transport and conservation.

 

For guidance and information on roadside vegetation management see roadside conservation publications.

Articles in this category:

Title Modified Date
Flora roads program Wednesday, 28 June 2017 12:16
Minimising impact of roadworks on native vegetation – a case study Wednesday, 28 June 2017 12:23
Roadside Conservation Committee Friday, 14 July 2017 13:31
Roadside conservation publications Tuesday, 22 March 2016 13:55
Roadside conservation value mapping program Tuesday, 03 October 2017 10:37
Roadside environmental weeds Wednesday, 28 June 2017 12:32
Roadside vegetation management training Wednesday, 28 June 2017 12:33