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Forestcheck is a monitoring framework devised in 1999 to quantify, record, interpret and report on the status of key forest organisms, communities, and processes in response to both forest management activities and natural variation. Monitoring is treated in this initiative as a form of quality control, and not as a substitute for audit, compliance, survey or research. The most desirable attributes of a monitoring system were identified as simplicity, integrated sampling, efficient sampling, reliability, feasibility, credibility and affordability. It is recognized that it is not possible to optimise all of these traits simultaneously. Forestcheck has been designed to align with the Montreal Process Criteria and Indicators approach to achieving ecologically sustainable forest management (ESFM, agreed to jointly by the Commonwealth and State Governments in 1998). A concept plan was prepared and workshopped within the Department of Conservation and Land Management and with scientists from universities, CSIRO, and other agencies in the WA Government, as well as scientists privately employed. Sampling commenced in November 2001.

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