Wodonga burn-off helps regenerate native species

A BURN-off on the outskirts of Wodonga achieved its goal yesterday of helping endangered native plants reclaim the bush.

The Department of Environment and Primary Industries lit one hectare of native grassland about two kilometres west of Bonegilla next to the Murray Valley Highway.

They use a mosaic pattern to burn the grasslands, which results in a different section burnt each year.

DEPI’s senior biodiversity officer Glen Johnson said the annual burn had been working successfully for many years.

“The burn is critical as part of the reserve management program,” he said. “While the planned burn program is primarily about reducing bushfire risk to communities, planned burning can also be used for vegetation that relies on fire for seed production and germination.”

He said the burn would deliver many environmental benefits.

“In particular, it will reduce kangaroo grass cover and open up spaces to enhance opportunities for flowering, seed production and germination of native wildflowers including threatened orchids,” he said.