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News for January 21, 2022

Litchfield Glamping Business, Tourism Operators Call for NT Government’s Action Against Gamba Grass Infestation

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A Litchfield (Australia) glamping business owner and tourist operators are urging the NT Government to take action against gamba grass infestations in Litchfield National Park, citing destruction from fires and a fast-changing landscape as significant risks to their businesses.

Photo Courtesy of Gamba Grass Roots

Litchfield Tourism Association members issued the call following a meeting with the Office of Minister for Parks and Rangers, Selena Uibo.

Nina Keener, the operator of a wildlife sanctuary and glamping experience Nina’s Ark, stated that it was the right time to focus on getting rid of gamba.

“If we don’t start getting gamba under control, Litchfield Park and surrounding areas will continue to lose their wildlife habitat. We need boots on the ground and for gamba control to be a daily, specialized job. Tackling gamba requires more than a weekend working bee.”

Photo Courtesy of Gamba Grass Roots

Rob Woods, the owner of Ethical Adventures, claimed that his seven years of operating tours across the Top End had given him the first-person view of significant changes to the landscape.

“Litchfield is one of the Territory’s greatest treasures and our most visited park. More must be done to eliminate gamba from the park before our environment and tourism industry is damaged beyond repair,” Woods said.

“We want to show our guests nature at its best – to do that; we need to protect it.”

Sue Mornane, whose accommodation Rum Jungle Bungalows, situated on crown land infested by gamba, has expressed her concern that Litchfield Park will become a Gamba-infested wasteland at the current rate.

“Gamba Grass infestation of our natural environment is a tragedy which is having enormous detrimental consequences in the Top End and for all Territorians,”

“The unnecessary ongoing loss of the natural environment, habitats, and native flora and fauna in gamba-infested areas is also having an enormous financial impact on the Northern Territory. We need all the departments and agencies to work together to eradicate gamba,”

“If we don’t combat gamba now and work to reduce dry season fires, I fear we won’t have an environment left for tourists to visit and enjoy,” Mornane added.

Pauline Cass from the Gamba Grass Roots Alliance stated that many residents in the community had similar concerns.

“Territorians are proud of our natural environment and wildlife, but we need to do more to protect our natural values, or our tourism sector will suffer in the future,” Cass said.

“The government needs to ensure long-term funding for solutions which stop gamba spreading across our landscape before it’s too late.” Cass ended.

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