Man caught cutting firewood in Shepparton Regional Park
Friday 12 June, 2020
The 37-year-old Shepparton man had cut into a very large and old River Red Gum that was lying on the bank of the Goulburn River.
Large fallen trees provide important habitat for native wildlife and the river corridor provides a link along the landscape for native fauna.
The man was questioned by Parks Victoria staff and later arrested by Victoria Police at the scene for allegedly being in possession of stolen goods.
The man is expected to be charged on summons with handling stolen goods, displaying false number plates, using an unregistered vehicle and offences relating to habitat destruction and driving off road.
Parks Victoria seized a number of items including: a vehicle, trailer, chainsaws and other related cutting equipment.
Parks Victoria and the Conservation Regulator are currently conducting regular patrols in parks and forests as part of Operation Hollows – a statewide operation to address the destruction of wildlife habitat caused by illegal firewood collection in Victoria’s forests, parks and reserves.
Illegal collection of firewood destroys the habitat that our native animals and plants live in.
Quotes attributable to Brooke Ryan, Area Chief Ranger Parks Victoria:
“Illegally harvesting timber destroys the trees and hollow logs that are habitat for birds and reptiles as well as a range of native mammals, such as possums, gliders and bats.
"People harvesting timber illegally risk substantial fines and or prosecution in the Magistrates Court.”
Anyone buying firewood should question where it is being sourced from, and report suspected illegal collection or selling of firewood on 136 186.
Illegal firewood activities can be reported to Parks Victoria on 13 1963 or the Office of the Conservation Regulator on 136 186.