Noelene Duckett, 5 Amery Street, Ashburton  VIC  3147.   Email:

Welcome to the July newsletter.  You may have noticed this issue is a little late – we thought we would delay its publication to coincide with the release of the Society’s exciting new website.   More about that later!

I am very pleased to report that the 18th Biennial ARS Conference, held recently in Alice Springs, was a great success.  Although I was unable to attend I have heard nothing but positive comments with one frequent ARS Conference attendee suggesting that it was “probably the best ARS meeting I’ve attended”.  For those who were not able to attend, you will find summaries of the conference later in this issue.

I’m sure many of you have heard of the recent passing of our dear friend and colleague David Wilcox.  David was a founding member of the Australian Rangeland Society and became the Inaugural President in 1975.  He was an outstanding rangeland scientist, a brilliant mentor and an entertaining and interested friend.  His many contributions to both rangeland science and the wider community have been summarised in a obituary written by his great friend Don Burnside and included in this newsletter.

At the Annual General Meeting of the Society in May, a number of changes were made to the ARS Council.  To introduce you to the new members, and re-introduce you to a couple of members who have been around awhile, I have put together an article about the 2015 Council which can be found on page 8.  I would also like to take this opportunity to thank those retiring Councillors who have helped me out with my duties as RMN Editor.  In particular, I would like to thank the Past President John Taylor for his willingness to share Council happenings and for the many articles he has contributed to the newsletter in recent years.  The minutes of the ARS AGM, including the President’s and Financial Reports, can also be found in this issue.

Finally, I would like to draw your attention to some of the exciting changes happening for the Australian Rangeland Society.  After a considerable amount of work by the Publications Committee, and Ron Hacker in particular, the new ARS website is now up and running.  Why don’t you check it out at  The Society is also keen to increase its social media presence so check us out soon on Facebook and Twitter!

The next issue of the RMN, and the last to be produced as a hard-copy, is due out in November.  I would like to have contributions by early to mid October if possible. I am always on the lookout for interesting articles on a wide range of rangeland topics – research proposals and reports, conference and meeting summaries, book reviews and letters to the Editor are always welcomed.