Protecting Southern New England Biodiversity

Connecting and Supporting Private Land Conservation Landholders

Protecting Southern New England Biodiversity

Connecting and Supporting Private Land Conservation Landholders

Community Participation -


The issue

Many landholders with private land conservation agreements in place in the Southern New England, and those who are keen to be involved in conserving biodiversity on their properties, often feel a little isolated and out of their depth in their pursuits.

The solution

Three field days on properties with existing NSW Biodiversity Conservation Trust (NSW BCT) Agreements, provided participants with knowledge on local biodiversity and gave detailed explanations of both the process to enter into a conservation agreement and how an agreement can benefit farm profitability and biodiversity. The days also provided an opportunity to connect and establish networks with like-minded landholders, expert speakers and support staff from NSW BCT, Southern New England Landcare, and Local Land Services (LLS).

The impact

June 2022 ‘Eastlake’, Uralla. Gordon Williams, host landholder and Joe van Eyk, leasee, spoke about a profitable beef operation alongside habitat conservation. NSW BCT staff covered eligible vegetation types and agreement options for BCT investment. 47 participants including landholders, UNE's Ecosystem Management School academics, LLS and New England Weeds Authority staff attended. Participants were excited to discover how biodiversity protection could enhance their overall property health and financial bottom line.

October 2022 'Glenburnie', Kentucky. Ron Hawksford, host, with Dave Carr (Stringybark Ecological) led a walk through a stunning NSW BCT agreement area. Ron shared his motivations, challenges, and aspirations, while Dave instructed on local flora, seed collection, and propagation techniques.  18 participants had heartfelt conversations, connected, networked, and gained practical insights applicable to their own properties.

November 2022 'Blackbutt', Balala. Pat Neve, host, with Dave Carr, botanist Peter Metcalfe, and renowned bird expert, Dr. Steve Debus, led participants on a property walk. 28 participants made meaningful connections and provided an invaluable insights on their practice on their own properties. NSW BCT staff showcased the range of options available, leaving participants inspired and empowered.


'Bush for Biodiversity' days enable people who want to protect biodiversity to learn and connect, as shown by the following testimonials: 'The country can regenerate and we can help’, ‘Very happy to meet new neighbours and arrange follow up contacts’, and 'Not be so stressed about small stuff’. People appreciated the opportunity to learn and make connections: ‘A lot more days like today, even if same topics, different locations’, ‘Very well organised and informative. Good combination of education and networking’, ‘More understanding on range of BCT options and which are the priority weeds to manage’. 

Key facts

  • A conservation agreement with the NSW BCT can benefit both on-farm biodiversity and farm profitability.
  • Landholders are keen to gain knowledge about their native plants and animals and how to protect them.
  • Isolated Southern New England private land conservation landholders have begun to establish networks and now feel more supported in their conservation endeavours.
  • Through collaboration, NSW BCT, Southern New England Landcare, and dedicated landholders combined knowledge, experience, shared vision, and camaraderie to provide invaluable support for those eager to protect biodiversity on farms.

Project Partners