While many of the resources mentioned in Question 4 include case studies, it is worth drawing attention to a selection of compendiums.
Hand in Hand: Farming sustainably features a selection of landholder case studies from across Australia. Farmers explain in their own words how they are implementing solutions to known environmental problems and applying sustainable business practices. The examples highlight that effective production and conservation can be integrated.
Sustaining the Land: Case studies of farmers working for our future reflects the commitment of farmers and provides a snapshot of the time, resources and monetary investments made by individuals who are striving to make their properties more productive and profitable whilst maintaining environmental sustainability. While the publication focuses on NSW, the diversity of enterprises and examples provided in the 34 case studies should have broader relevance.
The management of the farm business as a whole greatly influences how resources are utilised, conservation sites are managed and whether or not an explicit stewardship approach is adopted. The report Looking to the Farm Business: Approaches to managing native grassland in south-eastern Australia used a series of case studies to explore the net benefits of different farm management options including fertilising native pasture, sowing introduced pasture, cropping native grasslands, planting saltbush, reducing stocking levels and fencing off small areas of conservation interest. Key technical and economic aspects of each farm operation were outlined and the profitability of alternative management practices explored.
The productive use of saline land is receiving greater attention as in many places living with salt is the only solution. Insights: Case studies on how farmers are successfully managing saltland for profit and sustainability includes examples where the use of native plant species on saline areas has led to decreased costs and enterprise diversification. As part of the same series, Insights: Case studies on how farmers are successfully managing native vegetation for profit and sustainability, draws on experiences of integrating native vegetation management into profitable farming enterprises in south-eastern Australia.
Mulga (Acacia aneura) communities cover about 20 per cent of Australia and are principally used as grazing country. Most grazing properties rely on native pastures and woodlands, meaning that productivity and biodiversity are intricately linked. The book Graziers Experience in Managing Mulga Country presents the experiences of ten graziers in the Murray-Darling Basin. While these cases demonstrate that there is no single ‘right way’ of managing grazing in mulga country, the book includes a number of common themes for grazing these landscapes.
Farm Forestry for Green and Gold: Australian experiences of linking biodiversity to commercial forestry profiles eight landholders and growers. It represents the culmination of an 18-month project that brought together a range of research scientists, extension officers, project officers and others interested in exploring how forestry can combine commercial and biodiversity goals. Section 4 brings together information generated by the project’s national workshop where an analytical framework was developed to help people understand the opportunities and trade-offs associated with mixing commercial forestry and native biodiversity at the paddock level.
The Footprints Fact Sheets present a series of case studies describing landholder experiences with revegetation, as well as on-ground examples of many techniques outlined in Revegetation Techniques: A guide for establishing native vegetation in Victoria.
Also featuring a series of case studies of experiences, Grow Your Own Wildlife: How to improve your local environment provides a general introduction to wildlife conservation management integrated with other land uses including farm production. The studies include projects on a range of property types including agricultural land, public reserves, rehabilitated land, home grounds (e.g. 2 hectare properties), tourism, recreation and wildlife projects.
The Dairy Australia program Dairying for Tomorrow is a national program that is bringing the industry and community partners together to develop and implement sound environmental management practices for a sustainable dairy industry. Case studies from this program can be found at http://www.dairyingfortomorrow.com.
RipRap is produced by Land & Water Australia under the Riparian Lands R&D Program and is a good source of relevant case studies. The newsletter covers river and riparian topics by bringing together science relating to the topic and linking it to practical management advice. Copies can be downloaded from http://www.rivers.gov.au.
Land, Water & Wool (http://www.landwaterwool.gov.au) is a national research program providing wool producers with practical tools for managing natural resources sustainably and profitably. Land, Water & Wool is currently publishing a series of detailed case studies focusing on woolgrowers who are actively managing their properties for improved natural resource management.