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Technical annual report 2000-01



Technical annual report 2000-01


Dept. of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical annual report; Department of Regional Development, Primary Industry, Fisheries and Resources technical and annual report; Reports; PublicationNT; Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295




Made available via the Publications (Legal Deposit) Act 2004 (NT).






Agriculture -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals; Fisheries -- Northern Territory -- Periodicals

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Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries

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Technical bulletin (Northern Territory. Dept. of Primary Industry and Fisheries) ; no. 295



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Department of Primary Industry and Fisheries 248 PROJECT: Green Cover Reporting Project Officers: R. Dance and C. Allan Location: Alice Springs Objective: To develop and verify seasonal indices of rangeland pasture growth in Central Australia. Background: The most significant cause of variation in the productivity of the grazing industry, both in space and in time, is recognised as being due to variation in the suitability of climatic conditions for plant growth. Any action which people may take to enhance the utility of rangelands for livestock is secondary to unpredictable, unreliable and uncontrollable weather influences. It follows that to make any intelligent interpretation of the effects of management, quantification of seasonal conditions is essential. There is currently no altogether satisfactory means of doing this. The available information is either expensive to collect, qualitative, spatially sparse, or lacks an adequate interpretation model. The use of satellite based indices of plant growth provides an opportunity to record production on a regional scale at the "grass roots" stage. This project has previously demonstrated the potential of this approach for Central Australia. Other States, and the Commonwealth, have also developed expertise in this area, for their own purposes. Results: Fortnightly data continues to be acquired from the WA Department of Land Administration. It is used qualitatively in near real within the Department from time to time to clarify the extent of seasonal responses. Images continue to be made available for public use through the Departmental Internet web presence. Over 100 images were added to this information source during the year. Supplementary images were obtained to monitor flooding on the Barkly Tableland commencing in December 2000. On one station alone, in November 2000, prior to the big rains there was estimated to be less than 80 km2 of free water surface in the lakes on the station. By 7 January 2001 well in excess of 2,000 km2 was detectable in satellite imagery, with larger areas of shallow water less well defined.