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Mar 8, 2015

inching towards permanently protecting its heart

What we want to protect forever
What we want to protect forever

Late last year we launched our campaign to create a nature conservation reserve on Lot 46 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree.

Usually when we identify important rainforest needing protection we ask for your help to purchase the property, however in the case of Lot 46 we needed to act urgently to protect it.

This meant we did something we hadn’t done before but believed was absolutely critical– we took out a bank loan to save the property. This immediately saved Lot 46 from developers, however it prevents us from being able to protect it into perpetuity.

Our campaign will create a Reserve that will protect the 27.66 hectares of Lot 46, and the rainforest on it, forever. 

Please help us protect an amazing place!

What makes Lot 46 so special and worth saving?

  • it is of critical importance, in terms of habitat and connectivity, for the endangered Cassowary and other species
  • it sits at the base of the spectacular Thornton Peak, and provides an important link between the upland and lowland rainforest
  • surveys have recorded 14 rare, three endangered and two vulnerable species
  • it supports an Endangered Regional Ecosystem
  • two important creeks (part of the catchment area for Cooper Creek - one of the larger Daintree lowland creeks) run through it
  • it contains remnant forest with ecological transitions from rainforest to swamp forest
  • the western boundary is Daintree National Park/World Heritage area

What we have achieve so far

We bought Lot 46 in 2010 and since then have spent 1000s of hours on its restoration; we have planted nearly 37,000 trees that were grown in our Daintree nursery; and we have cleared more than 180 tonnes of rubbish.

volunteers planting rainforest trees
volunteers planting rainforest trees

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Feb 3, 2015

We planted our 70,000th Daintree rainforest tree!

the nursery team busy at work
the nursery team busy at work

With the support of our donors we reached an incredible milestone at the end of 2014 – we planted our 70,000th rainforest tree in the Daintree!

This is an incredible achievement, one that we are very proud of, but it wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our dedicated donors and volunteers. Thank you very much.

We want to share with you the achievements from 2014:

  • Planted 18,099 rainforest trees in the Daintree
  • Held two community tree planting days in the Daintree with nearly 2,000 trees planted
  • Spent over 4,500 hours restoring our Daintree properties
  • Grew more than 20,000 seedlings in our Daintree Rainforest Nursery

Thank you – YOU made this possible

 

Our productive Daintree Nursery

Four years ago, our Daintree Nursery could propagate and grow 3000 plants per year. Last year, the nursery team propagated and grew over 20,000 plants; a figure set to continue to grow.

This increase in nursery capacity was made possible by donations and grants. The funding enabled our Daintree Nursery Manager and our Daintree Land Manager to streamline potting and growing processes. We were able to install steel framed benches to hold all the seedling trays, additional planting materials, plus supplementary irrigation equipment, all which have contributed to more effective outcomes.

At any given time, there are approximately 6000 potted plants within the nursery shade house, and around 4000 in the sun hardening area. Propagation requires the collection of local seeds which are then sorted and catalogued prior to being sown for the germination process, and last year the nursery propagated 204 different rainforest species. This is definitely a ‘success story’ as not all rainforest seeds germinate easily, and many seeds are available only intermittently.

The decision about what seeds to collect and propagate is based on the needs of the restoration site. Local fruits are collected from within the Daintree Lowlands; their seeds retrieved and readied for propagation.

Plans for this year

Thanks to your continued support and donation we have begun the year busily, maintaining the nearly 35,000 trees we have planted in the Daintree over the last two years – it takes two years of watering and weeding before the young seedlings are strong enough to grow without our maintenance. The late arriving wet season meant we had to water for much longer into the season.

Now the rain has begun falling (and falling) and this gives us the confidence to begun planting more seedlings.

Scoping out the most high conservation properties to protect

We have also begun planning our next purchases. First our volunteer Daintree advisors conduct detailed surveys to assess priority properties using our Daintree Land Acquisition Criteria Score Card. This enables us to rank and prioritise properties for purchase (and to ensure we use donors’ gifts as appropriately as possible).

It also ensures we focus our attention on acquiring property with high conservation values that provide habitat corridors for flora and fauna species, a number of which are officially listed as endangered or threatened.

The ten ranking criteria include: forest structural integrity, regional significance, degree of plant endemism, plant species conservation status, connectivity to other protected properties, corridor function, strategic location, existing degradation, settlement threat potential, and value for money.

 

It is already shaping up to be another busy year protecting and restoring rainforest – however with your support in Adopting Vulnerable Rainforest in Australia we can make a tangible difference.

some of the 2000 seedlings grown in 2014
some of the 2000 seedlings grown in 2014
Our productive Daintree nursery
Our productive Daintree nursery

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Dec 15, 2014

Caring for 3 orphan cassowary chicks in care

two of the cassowary chicks in care
two of the cassowary chicks in care

Rainforest Rescue is currently caring for three orphan cassowary chicks are in care at our Garners Beach Cassowary Rehabilitation Recovery Centre at Mission Beach, Far North Queensland, Australia.

Two of the chicks have been in care since 11 October when they were found wandering down a road in south Mission Beach without their father. It is believed he was killed in a dog attack.

The third chick came into care on 16 November when it was approx. one month old after being struck by a vehicle. The chick was initially unable to walk, and was found to have a fractured tailbone. Under the care of Environmental Protection rangers and the Tully Vets its condition improved steadily and it is now able to walk, and has been transferred to the Centre for ongoing care.

All three chicks are steadily improving and their appetite is growing daily! It is expected they will be in care at the Centre for approximately 12 months before they can be returned to the wild.

These chicks represent the future of the endangered southern cassowary population.

All costs associated with raring and rehabilitating these chicks (and all birds taken into care at the Centre) is funded by Rainforest Rescue – this includes food, vet bills, carer costs and the Centre’s maintenance.

It costs $36 to feed and care for one orphaned cassowary for one day. Please support the rehabilitation of these chicks so they can return to the wild.

looking for his puppa
looking for his puppa
Cassowary carer
Cassowary carer
Cassowary enclosure for when the chicks have grown
Cassowary enclosure for when the chicks have grown
 
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