|The Preminghana IPA is 524 hectares in size, being 5 kilometress long and 1 kilometre wide. Bordering the Indian Ocean, its most prominent feature is Mt Cameron West, a basalt plug which rises 168 metres above the coastal plain. The area consists of manuka thicket, tea-tree swamps, eucalyptus woodlands, poa and sedges with coast wattle and honeysuckle. The IPA falls within the Woolnorth Interim Biogeographic Region which means that controls on vegetation protection are highly desirable. It is on the Register of the National Estate as part of the ‘Woolnorth Point to Marrawah Coastal Area’ listing on account of the rare Tasmanian Skipper Butterfly. It also has an Aboriginal listing as the ‘Mount Cameron West Engraving site’.
The objectives in declaring an IPA were:
· Management of the land;
· Eradication of introduced weed species including gorse and sea spurge;
· Re-vegetation of areas;
· Rehabilitation of dune erosion;
· Protection and maintenance of the biodiversity of the area;
· Protection of Aboriginal cultural heritage and cultural values; and
· Monitoring and assisting public access to the land.
These issues are reflected in the Management Plan for the IPA, which also covers the following issues:
· Harvesting of traditional plant resources for craft and bush tucker;
· Hunting of terrestrial mammals and birds;
· Use of marine resources;
· Protection of Aboriginal engravings and other sites;
· Fire control and the establishment of burning regimes;
· Control of the current uses of land which are predominantly non-Aboriginal, eg horse riding, off-road vehicles and trail bikes, fishing etc.
The Management Plan was drafted by TALC in 1997. Under the ALA community consultations were needed in order to endorse the plan, following which minor changes were made in 1998.
TALC initially applied for funding in December 1997. Natural Heritage Trust (NHT) funding was granted for a caretaker’s wages and a small amount for land management was given in the first year. Second and third year funding was conditional upon the area being declared an IPA. Apart from funding from the NHT, the IPA has attracted funding for infrastructure from the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Commission (ATSIC) for a tractor for clearing gorse bush and from a large Tasmanian Corporation for fencing to prevent cattle grazing from neighbouring lands. Coastcare funds were utilised to develop the Management Plan and to commence rehabilitation works (eg coconut matting and jute mesh etc).|