Campers are flocking back to national parks around Woodgate and Walkers Point impacted by fires last year.
Capacity bookings have been recorded at the Burrum Point and Kinkuna National Park camping areas for the Australia Day long weekend.
According to a spokesman from the Department of Environment and Science, which manages the National Parks, the resilience of flora and fauna is evidenced by the return of birds, wildlife and the green shoots of vegetation recovery.
The spokesman said in the Woodgate fire, 4860ha of Burrum Coast National Park was affected.
“Rangers are already seeing recovery from the recent fires and the return of animals and birds to the coastal heath communities that have evolved with fire.
“Fire can impact fauna through injury and loss of habitat, and the effects will vary by species,” said the spokesman.
“Some animals such as kangaroos and birds can escape fire by moving out of the way, or into unburnt areas in the fire ground.
“Other animals will burrow underground. Slow-moving species such as reptiles, and species unable to move including bird eggs or chicks, are more heavily impacted,” said the spokesman.
“After a fire, animals will recolonise an area and take advantage of new growth that can provide nutritious food. Fire can also create hollows in trees and logs for nesting and shelter.”
The spokesman went on to say that while intense fire can have negative impacts on plant communities, it can also be beneficial.
“The coastal heath communities in Burrum Coast National Park have evolved to require regular fire. This recent fire will have opened seed pods and triggered germination, and regeneration of the plant life.”
After recent rains, rangers have seen the surviving vegetation reshooting, and new plants germinating.
“We’re happy to say that previous experience shows that recovery from this fire will be rapid. Fire is a natural characteristic of coastal heath communities.
The spokesman said the fire did not impact on any visitor facilities within Burrum Coast National Park.
“All camping areas and roads are open for public enjoyment with the park’s two camping areas at Burrum Point and Kinkuna are already fully booked for the Australia Day long weekend.
“Burrum Coast visitors over the Australia Day long weekend and Easter will see good signs of recovery that will make for interesting photo opportunities. They’ll also see wildlife returning.,” said the spokesman.
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