Jan 23, 2014

Almost 50,000 trees, and counting!

Watering seedlings by hand
Watering seedlings by hand

Dear Friends

With support from our donors, we have now planted 49,061 trees in the World Heritage Listed Daintree Rainforest region in Northern Queensland, Australia.

Less rain than expected so far this season meant hand-watering the seedlings we planted at Lot 46 Cape Tribulation Road. We dug almost 3,000 planting holes in one week and planted more than 1,300 trees just as rains finally arrived to help the trees get established.

Seed collection
But the lack of rain also enabled us to collect lots of fruit for seeds and we now have about 20 new species in the nursery. We are growing enough seeds for our forthcoming plantings. Almost as quickly as our nursery team builds new benches and cages for the seedlings, they’re filled with new seedlings, which is great news.

Clearing rubbish and removing invasive weeds is essential. Dealing with rubble, car wrecks, old tyres and the remains of disused buildings is hard work. We removed all the rubbish at Rosewood Road using heavy earth-moving equipment, jack hammers and even an oxy-acetylene torch on a steel-reinforced concrete slab to make way for replanting.

Camera traps
We have also installed nine camera traps at Lot 46 to capture wildlife as they return to the rainforest. We know from our work with the Orangutan Information Centre in North Sumatra that wildlife does return and we look forward to sharing pictures with you soon.

New vehicle
We recently purchased a four wheel drive vehicle to enable us better to travel in the rough terrain and carry water and tools. We are now in the process of having it branded ‘Rainforest Rescue’ so locals and visitors alike are more aware of our presence and work.

Moving forward
We hope for lots of rain this wet season to establish our new seedlings. We intend to finalise the purchase of Lots 17 & 18 Forest Creek Close, which are adjacent to Lot 16, by April. With your continuing support, this will allow us to create an important wildlife corridor in this area and protect this rainforest forever.

Can you please donate to help us continue our work to buy back and restore rainforests?

Rainforest fruits collected for seeds
Rainforest fruits collected for seeds
Clearing rubbish at Rosewood Road
Clearing rubbish at Rosewood Road
Nov 28, 2013

Help save the Cassowary this Thanksgiving

Save the Cassowary
Save the Cassowary

Dear Friend & Supporter,

One of the most ancient of all creatures to inhabit the Wet Tropics of Queensland is the Endangered Southern Cassowary. As a 'keystone species' the Cassowary's role is pivotal in preserving the rainforest and its unique plants and animals. Yet, It's estimated that fewer than 1,000 birds remain.

The Southern Cassowary has been the Wet Tropics' 'rainforest gardener' for virtually its entire existence, and is the major seed disperser of around 150 plant species. Around 70 to 100 of these plants depend entirely on the Cassowary to disperse their seeds, maintaining the rainforest's rich biodiversity.

With so few birds left in the wild, we must act now to help save the Endangered Southern Cassowary. If it becomes extinct, we stand to lose not just one of Australia's most iconic animal species, but also the Wet Tropics - including the magnificient Daintree Rainforest - as we know it.

Please make a donation by Tuesday 31st December to help protect and restore critical Cassowary habitat and assist with conservation efforts.

The greatest threat to Cassowaries is us...people. Rapid urban development in parts of the Wet Tropics has either destroyed or fragmented much of their habitat. An adult Cassowary needs 250 hectares in which to forage for food and to breed. The disruption of their habitat forces them to travel further - exposing them to threats like dog attacks and road fatalities.

Thanks to Rainforest Rescue supporters we are taking postive action to help save the Southern Cassowary. This includes the purchase and protection of 22 properties to date classified as 'essential' Cassowary habitat, and the planting of 43,756 trees in the Daintree Rainforest and at Mission Beach to create Cassowary corridors and provide extra food and shelter.

Mission Beach, south of Cairns, is home to Australia's greatest density of Southern Cassowaries. Yet, due to a combination of rapid development and extreme weather events, like Cyclone Yasi, as few as 40 to 50 birds remain.

That's why we are negotiating with the Queensland State Government to co-manage the Garner's Beach Cassowary Rehabilitation Centre near Mission Beach. This is the only facility that rescues, rehabilitates and releases injured and orphaned Cassowaries back into the wild.

Protecting and restoring essential Cassowary habitat and supporting the life-saving work of the Garner's Beach Cassowary Rehabiliation Centre is only possible with the support of generous people like you. Your donation is key to helping us reach our target of $130,000 by Tuesday 31st January.

Your gift is vital to carrying out these types of long-term projects:

  • $50 could provide food for one adult Cassowary for a week
  • $250 could help with the planting and maintenance of 25 native rainforest trees to help restore or create Cassowary corridors
  • $750 could cover the care of an injured or orphaned Cassowary over an 18-month period
  • $1000 could contribute to the preservation of 200 square metres of Cassowary habitat

The work of caring for and protecting the rainforest, on your behalf, never stops. As the annual cyclone season begins, a gift from you now can do so much to protect the Endangered Southern Cassowary, which is extremely vuolnerable at this time of year.

Please make a donation by Tuesday 31st December. Together, we can protect and restore habitat that is critical to the survival of the Southern Cassowary - and the many rainforest plants and animals that in turn rely on the 'rainforest gardener' for their survival.

The Cassowary is critical to rainforest ecology
The Cassowary is critical to rainforest ecology
A Cassowary requires 250ha in which to breed
A Cassowary requires 250ha in which to breed
Traffic is the No.1 cause of Cassowary mortality
Traffic is the No.1 cause of Cassowary mortality
Fragmentation exposes habitat to cyclonic events
Fragmentation exposes habitat to cyclonic events
Oct 30, 2013

Thanks to you another rainforest property is saved

Thanks for your wonderful support
Thanks for your wonderful support

Dear Friend & Supporter

Thanks to your wonderful support another rainforest property has been protected in the Daintree bringing the total number saved to 22

Earlier this year we announced our intention to buy back and protect five rainforest properties in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest that we had identified as high-conservation value. Thanks to generous donations from Rainforest Rescue supporters, and of course the wonderful contribution from our GlobalGiving donors, we recently confirmed the purchase of one of these properties at Lot 16 Forest Creek Close.

This property is one of three located on Forest Creek Close that we have targeted in our 'Top 5 Buy Back List'.

The acquisition of this property represented a strategic opportunity for Rainforest Rescue as it is located within close proximity to four other properties that we have already protected in this area; three of which form the Rainforest Rescue Nature Refuge. Its purchase provides habitat connectivity to the surrounding Daintree National Park/World Heritage Area, home to over 122 rare, threatened and endangered species including the Endangered Southern Cassowary and the rare Bennett's Tree-kangaroo. 

With the property classified as containing "essential habitat" for the Endangered Southern Cassowary, its conservation value is unquestionable. A flora and fauna survey undertaken on the property identified 128 different plant species including five threatened species: Brass' Pothos (Pothos brassii), Black Palm (Normanbya normanbyi), Kamala (Mallotus polyadenos), Rusty Rhodomyrtus (Rhodomyrtus effusa) and species of Haplostichantus endemic to north-east Queensland.

Thank you so much for your generous support that enabled the purchase of this important rainforest property. Please will you donate again so we can buy back the remaining properties on our 'Top 5 Buy Back List'.

The purchase of Lots 17 & 18 Forest Creek Close which are adjacent to Lot 16 will create an invaluable wildlife corridor in this section of the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Threat of development in this area is high given its idealic location to the Daintree River and the ferry terminal.

With every property that we purchase we are one step closer to ensuring that the unqiue conservation values of the Daintree Rainforest are protected forever. Thank you for everything you do to help Protect Rainforests Forever.

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