Private land conservation in Australia is a diverse, complex and evolving sector, encompassing a collection of activities that contribute to the conservation of ecological processes on private land, across freehold, leasehold and indigenous tenures.
It can take many forms, from conservation covenants and stewardship agreements to programs such as Land for Wildlife or Landcare. Rather than being a single, identifiable practice, the variation in private land conservation activities suggests that at a landscape scale, it is perhaps best seen as a mosaic of formal and informal conservation activities that increase the amount of habitat preserved and improve habitat connectivity. In doing so, private land conservation is critical in increasing the viability of the protected area estate and the ecosystem services it provides.
Whilst the scale, motivations and types of actions vary across the landscape, at the core of private land conservation is the purpose of conserving, restoring and protecting important natural areas on private lands, with the objectives of maintaining ecological processes, supporting economic and social interests, and meeting national targets for biodiversity conservation.