The survey of Land Management Practices in the Great Barrier Reef Catchments is the third ABS survey to collect information using a spatial, land-based area frame. In this survey methodology the unit surveyed is a physical land holding, which has been aggregated from land parcels under common ownership or management within an individual catchment. The usual approach used in ABS surveys of agricultural or natural resource management practices is to collect information directly from agricultural businesses and attribute the information collected to a specific area.
The advantage of this methodology is that it can be used as a spatial building block, with the land-based area frame and methodology used to integrate other information related to that piece of land. It also supports a diversity of spatial outputs, allowing the data to be presented in different ways.
The survey collected information from the land owner and/or manager of the holding on a range of land management practices applied to agricultural land. These were soil testing for nutrients, fertiliser use, chemical use (including weed, pest and disease control), riparian management, surface water management and irrigation water management. Information was also collected on practices specific to particular agricultural activities.
The information in this release covers 28 of the 30 catchments draining into the Great Barrier Reef lagoon. The two catchments in the Cape York NRM region have been excluded because they have minimal agricultural activity.
This is the main release of data from the survey. It replaces the preliminary publication, Land Management Practices in the Great Barrier Reef Catchments, Preliminary, 2008-09 (Catalogue Number 4619.0) released on 22 December 2009.
Several revisions have been made to data since the preliminary release. The only significant revision relates to the application of fertiliser in the Herbert and Mulgrave-Russell River catchments. The revisions are the result of further analysis and validation of the data.
In this release, the data is published for the 28 river catchments and for five Natural Resource Management (NRM) regions in spreadsheet tables. The publication text discusses key features of each catchment region, and includes a map showing the location of each catchment within a NRM region. There are also a series of maps at the end the commentary that spatially represent some of the published data.
This release also contains additional data not directly collected in the Land Management Practices Survey. Data in this release relating to the characteristics of farmers and farm managers has been sourced from the 2006 Census of Population and Housing. This data is shown in Table 35. Selected agricultural production data has been sourced from Agricultural Commodities, Australia, 2008-09 (cat. no. 7121.0). This data is shown in Table 36.
Users of the data are encouraged to read the explanatory notes accompanying this release.
ABBREVIATIONS AND SYMBOLS USED
ABS Australian Bureau of Statistics
DAFF Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
DERM Department of Environment and Resource Management (Qld)
DEWHA Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts
GBR Great Barrier Reef
NRM natural resource management
.. nil or rounded to zero (including null cells)