By Dan Oancea

So you feel like going out for fire opals in New South Wales? Then you better behave ‘cause the Big Brother’s watching you.

In order to facilitate mining and let the miners know that there are rules to be followed the NSW Department of Primary Industries released an informative and sometimes funny Code of Practice for Landholders and Opal Miners and Prospectors.

A few excerpts follow:


Travel out to the fields in wet weather. Wet ground is hazardous for travel and roads can be easily damaged.

  Bring a dog onto the area (very few dog owners will acknowledge that their particular pet is capable of killing sheep). Dogs have maimed and killed stock and are not allowed in the opal prospecting area.

  Carry any firearms onto the prospecting or claim area.

  Burn any cleared vegetation.

  Cause any unreasonable noise near the landholder’s residence.

  Do not camp on your claim unless you are actively mining that particular claim.”


Leave all gates as you find them, whether open or shut.

  Regularly take all your garbage back into town and dispose of it at a recognised public rubbish tip.”

For more of these useful recommendations read the NSW guide.