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Jan 24, 2018

Another Vulnerable Property Saved thanks to YOU!

Our 31st Threatened Property Saved thanks to YOU!

Last time we wrote to you with the news that we had secured the protection forever of a 30th threatened rainforest property.

Well, not yet six months later and with your wonderful support Rainforest Rescue has been able to save our 31st threatened and vulnerable Daintree lowland rainforest property! We have already started the conveyancing process on this land.

This is a particularly satisfying win, as back in 2015 when Rainforest Rescue originally tried to save this block it was sold from under our feet for development. Luckily since then and now only a small area was cleared before work stopped and this will regenerate quickly with our plantings.

Our purchase of rainforest under threat is always strategic, never scattergun. We care more about our contribution to conservation than numbers per se. We hold out for properties of significant strategic conservation value, ensuring that we use supporters' donations to the best possible effect. We take our duty of care to our supporters very seriously.

And this is where we have come to with property # 31: This land links to a current Rainforest Rescue wildlife corridor and connects upland World Heritage Area and National Park to the lowland rainforest and coast. Strategic acquisitions such as this will continue to deliver vital protection for the rainforest.

The Lowland Daintree Rainforest lies between the Wet Tropics of Queensland and the Great Barrier Reef IUNESCO World Heritage Areas, thus having a vital role in connecting these two significant ecosystems.

Thank you again for helping us save this very threatened property!

Rainforest Rescue regenerating work
Rainforest Rescue regenerating work
Jan 24, 2018

Saving the Heart of the Daintree

Fruits of Labour - Lot 46 Restoration
Fruits of Labour - Lot 46 Restoration

Many thanks for your kind help to save Lot 46 Daintree and protect it forever. 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 buy the property. 

This immediately saved Lot 46 from developers, however the loan against the property prevents us from being able to protect it into perpetuity and elevate it to Nature Reserve Status. This campaign, when fully funded, will allow for Nature Reserve Status to be given and therefore will protect the 27.66 hectares of Lot 46, and the rainforest on it, forever.

What makes Lot 46 so special and worth saving?

  • it’s of critical importance, in terms of habitat and connectivity, for the endangered cassowary and other species
  • surveys have recorded 14 rare, three endangered and two vulnerable species
  • it sits at the base of the spectacular Thornton Peak (Wundu), and provides an important link between the upland and lowland rainforest
  • 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

With the help of supporters, Lot 46 has already been restored to its previous splendour and about half of the loan for property has now been paid down. We continue to work towards saving this important parcel of rainforest – one donation at a time. Thank you again for helping to Protect Rainforests Forever!

Jan 22, 2018

ONGOING RESEARCH VITAL FOR CASSOWARY CONSERVATION

Cassowary and Red Lures
Cassowary and Red Lures

With donors help, Rainforest Rescue sponsored important research on the various aspects of the ecology of the threatened Southern Cassowary. The research was conducted by an honours student from Southern Cross University, NSW Australia. Under the guidance of wildlife ecologist Dr Ross Goldingay and CSIRO cassowary expert Dr David Westcott, a comprehensive cassowary survey was conducted.

Conducted in the Daintree coastal lowlands, situated 120 km north of Cairns and within the World Heritage Wet Tropics region of north-eastern Queensland, Australia. The Daintree lowlands are one of six priority cassowary management areas, comprising of identified critical cassowary habitat. It is only the second comprehensive cassowary survey of the Daintree region, the first being almost 20 years ago.

The student and researcher was accompanied by Indigenous Jabalbina rangers whilst surveying the more remote areas. Monitoring and caring for cassowaries is of high cultural importance and a priority action on Jabalbina’s management plan.

'A privilege it has been indeed to have spent such deep time in the ancient forests of the Kuku Yalanji people with these superb birds. I am very happy with the outcomes of my fieldwork, it took lots of legwork to get the data but it's been worth every step'  Research Student

The aims of the research was to

  • Record any sign of cassowary (sighting, prints, scats and vocalizations) on 31 sites
  • To assess habitat parameters and survey variables that may influence usage by, or detectability of these birds.
  • To monitor these sites with motion sensor camera traps and attempt photographic identification of individuals.
  • To compare lean season fruit resource use to fruit resource availability by through dietary analysis of scats and identification and quantification of fruit on the forest floor.

An experimental survey technique was also trialled whereby coloured lures (imitating fruit) were secured to the base of trees in front of camera traps.

Thanks to Rainforest Rescues assistance in providing camera traps, cassowaries were detected on all 31 sites and 45-50 individual birds have been photographically identified.

Ongoing research on Cassowary populations is vital for assessment & evaluation of rainforest protection and restoration methods. Signs of Cassowary returning to and being sighted in an area is the single most effective way to confirm that what we're doing is working. Without supporters help we could not continue this vital work to provide habitat for the Southern Cassowary and ensure it's survival. Thank you to all of our supporters who understand and are a part of this work!

Cassowary caught by camera trap
Cassowary caught by camera trap
 
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