Geoffrey Hope, Rachel Nanson
Proceedings of the 14th International Peat Congress
bog-mapping, carbon-budget, fire, long-term-sequestration, peat-repair
Theme V. Restoration, rehabilitation and after-use of disturbed peatlands
Extensive mires (topogenic shrublands and sedgelands) are found in the mountains of the southeastern highlands of Australia where they total 11,000 ha. The peatlands have been exposed to fires throughout the Holocene but are well adapted to recover with little loss of peat. The peatlands preserve significant regional carbon stores but the net long term carbon sequestration rate is probably only 0.6 tonnes C/ha/yr although Sphagnum-shrubland mires can reach 1.5 tonnes C/ha/yr. In the Snowy Mts of New South Wales, summer grazing after 1850 led to a marked retreat of the peatlands. Grazing stopped around 1950 but recovery has been slow. Extensive fires in 2003 set progress back many areas. Moss transplants, artificial shade, fertiliser and channel blocking have been trialled in burnt areas and promising results obtained.