An efficient communications system is essential to the successful management of the Gardens at both sites. In Canberra, the telephone system provides voice, facsimile and data links, and there is a two-way radio system for emergencies. The system has been periodically upgraded to take account of more sophisticated needs and the increased number of users. The major buildings have been linked directly to the PABX. Public telephones are also provided. The rangers use mobile phones, with the two-way radio system as back-up. Voice communication between the Gardens and the Australian Nature Conservation Agency's central office in Belconnen is via linked PABX. Data communication off site is via ISDN link to other networks.

A fibre-optic network has recently been installed to provide a data link between the major buildings; the network is FDDI compliant. The ethernet connections consist of coaxial and twisted-pair cable; additional connections to terminals are via leased and private telephone and data lines.

The computer system provides an internal electronic mail system for all its clients. External electronic mail to other local, interstate and international institutions is provided by an e-mail connection to AARNet. Faxes may be sent directly from any terminal on the network.

At the Jervis Bay site the telephone system provides a connection to the plant database by modem, as well as voice and facsimile links. Portable two-way radio communications provide the Gardens staff with links to the Australian Federal Police and the Jervis Bay National Park.

Management prescriptions


The objective is to provide an efficient internal and external communications systems that facilitates management of the Gardens.


The existing communications system in Canberra and at Jervis Bay will be maintained and upgraded to cope with increases in demand and traffic.

Consideration will be given to extending the fibre-optic network to include buildings not at presently connected and to connecting the Gardens' fibre-optic network in Canberra with that of CSIRO. The ISDN link between the Gardens and Belconnen will be upgraded to handle increased traffic. The AARNet connection will be upgraded from mail only to full access, enabling direct access to and use of remote machines.

The two-way radio system will be assessed to see if it is suitable in its present state for use during emergencies.