The Forest Products Commission (FPC) will not harvest timber in Chester 01 coupe in season 2009.
Located approximately 50 kilometres east of Margaret River in Western Australia’s south west, Chester coupe is an area of approximately 1,300 hectares.
The decision to postpone the harvest was made after receiving a report from the Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC) which identified a further 27 hectares of diverse eco-type zones and also confirmed the entire area is affected by dieback disease.
Acting General Manager Steve Melville said FPC had always been aware that many parts of Chester coupe contained zones of high biodiversity and woodland.
“In total, Chester coupe contains approximately 500 hectares of diverse ecotype zones, which are quarantined from harvesting and protected as informal reserves.”
“The current harvest plan is restricted to 135 hectares in a 200-hectare area in the northwest corner of the coupe,” he said.
“It may be necessary to alter the layout of haul roads into the coupe and that means we will submit the area to another flora survey and await further sign-off from DEC before we proceed with harvesting operations,” Mr Melville said.