WIAA 100: Nita Lester

23 Mar, 2014 01:00 AM

FOR more than 30 years Dr Nita Lester has worked tirelessly in the promotion and preservation of Australia biodiversity.

The inaugural chairman of the board of honorary directors on Myall Park Botanic Garden Ltd [MPBG] – a 132 hectare all-Australian collection on both the National and Queensland Heritage list, and the current chairman, Nita has been at the grass roots of promoting the importance of biodiversity to rural and remote landholders.

Author of a number of books including Woodland to Weeds and Brigalow Birds, she advocates the importance of caring and maintaining the endemic plant and animal species on agricultural and farming lands for improved productivity and rural lifestyle.

Through MPBG and other such organisations such as Birds Queensland, the Queensland Botanical Artist Society, Keep Australia Beautiful and Society for Growing Australian Plants, Nita has been able to communicate with a wide range of both rural and urban people to further the understanding of the Australian environment. She has donated herbarium collections to rural libraries so locals and visitors can use them to identify species and learn more about the native species.

Nita speaks regularly to audiences on a diverse subjects from water conservation, growing Australian natives to preserve native fauna that are important for the pollination and botany of flora so producers understand the reasons behind the requirements of their crops.

She is currently a consultant for Origin in the preservation and translocation of threatened species and for the care of their ecosystems, as well as conducting botanical workshops to enable flora spotters to understand the flora observed.

Having lived in both rural and urban locations, Nita’s academic life centers around education and science [two PhDs] and is a passionate advocate for rural teaching that will contribute to a sustainable future.


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