Don’t lose rural value: researchers

HEARING the birds sing in the morning and the frogs croak at night is the serene environment that enticed many Thurgoona Wirlinga residents to the area.

But they have expressed concerns about there being too much focus on building houses instead of on native plants and wildlife through a survey initiated by Charles Sturt University.

Social researcher associate professor Dr Rosemary Black called on council to play a bigger role in conserving wildlife and native plants during developments.

“There’s no reason why council could not provide nest boxes to Thurgoona homes,” she said.

“The council has to take a bigger role in consulting people because I know there are some who aren’t happy about trees being knocked down leaving no habitat for the animals.”

Dr Black said patches of land needed to be dedicated to preserving wildlife and plants.

“We want them all to join up so the wildlife have corridors so they can move from one place to another,” she said.

“One of the unique features Thurgoona offers is that bushland and rural feel, and I think that’s how it was originally intended.

“Future developments will change the character of Thurgoona, which is why a lot of people have decided to live there.”

Albury Council’s planning and development committee Cr Daryl Betteridge said the council adopted a Thurgoona Wirlinga structure plan in 2012 following consultation and input from residents.

“Protecting and enhancing the environment is a major focus of the plan and it strikes the right balance between responsible urban development and preserving areas identified as environmentally significant,” he said.

“It is intended that future urban development protects and enhances the environmental lands and the species that rely on them for survival.”

Cr Betteridge said the council planned to protect and enhance biodiversity and key fauna habitat.

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