The Traprock Wool Association Inc. was formed in 1991 following the collapse of the wool floor-price scheme, with over 80 members from the traprock region of SE Qld through to NE NSW. The intent was to develop a market for Traprock wools. The group has been proactive in the introduction of a Quality Assurance scheme (TQM) for wool harvesting, a scheme recognised throughout Australia as one to emulate.
The real strength of Traprock has been its ability to provide education to its members, whether on wool, marketing, best practice, animal nutrition, wool preparation, pastures, biodiversity or any other matter considered of need or interest. The group is also valued for its social interaction. Most meetings end with a barbeque and most value is derived from the discussions held then.
Our area is renowned for its products. Our early stonefruit is widely sought and has reached world-class recognition. Our wool, grown on native pastures, is keenly sourced on the market for its characteristics and processability.
In August 2001 a sub-committee was formed to investigate how TWA could improve environmental management for the group. Using the data from the initial questionnaire sent to all TWA members in January 2002, and after analysing all enterprises undertaken in the Traprock catchment and their impacts on the environment, the basis of the Traprock Integrated Management System was developed.
With the assistance of Inglewood and Stanthorpe Landcare Groups, the Traprock region has been broken into 9 sub-catchments and property mapping for all landowners, whether or not they are members of TWA, has been undertaken within these groupings to form
Through funding provided by Australian Wool Innovation and with the assistance of Queensland Murray-Darling Committee and the University of Southern Queensland, Greg Ford, a biodiversity expert based with the QMDC, was engaged to place a biodiversity value on our natural resources and our land practices over a 2-year period.
The initial results from these studies have shown reasonably high levels of biodiversity due to its native pastures and vegetation cover. The Traprock is an important area for bird life as it is at the intersection of three climatic zones and thus important in the migratory bird paths. High numbers of indicator species of birds, ants and frogs were found to be prevalent.
Traprock landholders are keen to find NRM solutions that provide good biodiversity values and improve production levels. An example if this is our desire to investigate and improve current grazing management practices to further these aims.
The development and adoption of the Traprock Integrated Management System will ensure implementation of changes to NRM is effectively management and future requirements are addressed.