The Forests Department of the government of Western Australia was first formed in 1919. In 1975 the first aircraft were obtained for use in fire spotting. By 1990 these aircraft were getting old, and an attempt was made to help local industry by buying MAC Mamba light aircraft as replacements. This order was never fulfilled. Another attempt to boost local industry resulted in 6 Eagle Aircraft XT-S Very Light Aircraft being used for 3 fire seasons from 1995. In 1995 a more permament solution was reached when the American Champion 8GCBC Scout was selected as the new spotter aircraft. These aircraft are still in service.
In addition to it’s own aircraft the DPaW also contracts fixed-wing and rotary-wing aircraft from various civilian operators for aerial fire-fighting operations.
|1 January 1919||Forests Department created.|
|1975||Spotter aircraft first acquired.|
|22 March 1985||Forests Department becomes Department of Conservation and Land Management (CALM).|
|1 July 2006||CALM becomes Department of Environment and Conservation (DEC).|
|1 July 2013||DEC becomes Department of Parks and Wildlife (DPaW).|
The DPaW aircraft are fully operational.
No plans known.
The DPaW aircraft appear to fly in the standard factory colour scheme, with the addition of the departmental logo and the ‘Spotter’ identity number 64x on the fin. No service titles are carried.
Aircraft Serial Numbers
The DPaW aircraft carry Australian civil aircraft registrations, e.g. American Champion 8GCBC Scout VH-DXZ.
Coding system not used.
None – Manufacturers designations used
Current Aircraft Inventory
|American Champion 8GCBC Scout||?||10||Fire Spotting||USA|
All-Time Aircraft Used List
|Aircraft Type||Quantity||Service Entry||Retirement||Origin|
|American Champion 8GCBC Scout||10||1996||current||USA|
|Eagle Aircraft XT-S||6||1995||1997||Australia|
|Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub||?||1975||1995||USA|
Aircraft NOT Used
Flight International 15-21 August 1990 page 21 mentions an order for three MAC Mamba light aircraft by the Department of Conservation and Land Management. They were due for delivery in October 1990 as spotters to replace the Piper Cubs. This delivery never took place.
Aircraft Losses and Incidents
Department of Parks and Wildlife, 17 Dick Perry Avenue, Technology Park, Western Precinct, KENSINGTON WA 6151.
No subordinate units.
Current Unit Allocations
No subordinate units.
Historical Unit Allocations
All-Time Flying Units List
Current Air Bases
The spotter aircraft are based at Jandakot, Bunbury, Dwellingup and Manjimup.
All-Time Air Bases Used List