Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46

by Rainforest Rescue
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Create a Nature Conservation Reserve on Lot 46
Traditional owner conducting smoking ceremony
Traditional owner conducting smoking ceremony

Because of YOU – and your ongoing commitment to the forever protection of Lot 46, Cape Tribulation Road in the beautiful Daintree lowland rainforests - last weekend, an extraordinary achievement was recorded.

Lot 46 – this incredibly precious piece of land, which back in 2010 – was pulled off the market and rescued by Rainforest Rescue - was granted Nature Refuge status. Just brilliant!

This 28 hectare property was deeply neglected, devastated by exotic oil palm production and impenetrable with weeds. From a sad, overgrown junkyard to now a thriving, healthy rainforest – the forever protection and regeneration of Lot 46 is simple mind blowing. Says Madeleine, Rainforest Rescue Chairperson:

“The efforts, energy, and determination that have carried out the restoration of this property have very quickly turned into a gift – for Lot 46, the surrounding rainforest, the cassowaries, the catchment, and for the myriad of species that now call this thriving rainforest home.”

It was imperative that Rainforest Rescue bring this rainforest land back to Country, and on approaching the local Yalanji Language Committee, we were able to grant Lot 46 with the traditional name of Kurranji Bubu (Cassowary Land).

In warmest acknowledge to the Traditional Owners, the Solomon Family,’ Kurranji Bubu’ represents a ‘coming home’ of this piece of rainforest, bringing it back into the heart of the Daintree and returning it to its rightful owners.

A throwback to the start of this wonderful rescue and repair story of Kurranji Bubu (formerly known as Lot 46), is detailed in depth on this link.

These remarkable outcomes are only possibly through YOUR continued trust, support and commitment to the work that Rainforest Rescue does tirelessly in the unprotected Daintree lowland rainforest.  A truly magical gift – back to Nature – forever.

With your help we'll be able to repeat this success. The plans to build our new nursery is picking up speed, on its completion, our production of trees will soar from the current 27,000 per year to 150,000 ... this will provide for the replanting of almost 20 hectares of rainforest habitat every year!

Gurranji Bubu marks a very important milestone in our journey to rescure, restore and protect unprotected Daintree rainforest but there is still more work to do. We're happy to know that, with your continued support, we can do it!

Thank you, from the bottom of our Rainforest Rescue hearts.

Ecological Advisors Allen & Barbara
Ecological Advisors Allen & Barbara
Lot 46 to Kurranji Bubu - Aerial Timeline
Lot 46 to Kurranji Bubu - Aerial Timeline
Lot 46 to Kurranji Bubu - Tree Planters
Lot 46 to Kurranji Bubu - Tree Planters

Links:

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Years after the nearly 50,000 trees were planted to help regenerate and repair Lot 46, Cape Tribulation in the Daintree rainforest, the local Daintree flora and fauna are continuing to benefit enormously.

When I asked for an update on Lot 46 for our wonderful GlobalGiving Donors, from both our new Land Manager, Justin, and Ecological Advisor, Allen, the Southern Cassowary played yet again, a starring role.

Justin says, ‘’I have been watching the local male and female cassowary utilising Lot 46 year after year for the last 5 years for refuge, feeding and raising chicks… It is a valuable corridor to move between other neighbouring properties throughout the year but also provides valuable food sources seasonally of fruit of all sizes for the chicks to the adult birds.’’ Justin has captured Dad and his chicks on Lot 46 as below.

Allen reinforced that; ‘’…Cassowaries are continuing to use Lot 46 in increasing numbers, as with more and more trees, come more fruit production (cassowary’s food sources), so increased cassowaries.’’ In the YouTube video here (Fast Facts - The Glossy Laurel (Cryptocarya laevigata) - YouTube), Allen speaks to one of these food sources, a primitive flowering plant among the interesting family of the Glossy Laurel, and the impact it has in the rainforest.

Allen also commented on the massive 27-hectare property as a whole saying ‘’…it is looking spectacular – many canopies are closing over, meaning very little weed activity.’’

Further life abounds on Lot 46, with Justin adding that, ‘’… since November the Buff Breasted Paradise Kingfishers have returned from Papua New Guinea for breeding once again. Some pairs have taken up residence for feeding to refuel after the long trip but also have excavated a number of nest sites within the termite mounds that grow from the forest floor. Conditions are perfect for the termite mounds … for an airconditioned nest for them.  Breeding is now in full swing with the chicks hatched and growing fast preparing for the big flight back north before the rains really set in.’’

Thanks to your support, Lot 46 is the thriving rainforest that we have visioned – all those ten years ago when we purchased this huge piece of rainforest for forever protection. Thanks to you – flora and fauna of the Daintree are all that much safer.

We couldn’t do it without you, we appreciate you and your support SO much.

Allen's YouTube
Allen's YouTube
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Lot 46 by Martin Stringer
Lot 46 by Martin Stringer

Almost There!

Lot 46 Cape Tribulation Road, a 28 hectare property that was purchased by Rainforest Rescue in August 2010, is ON THE CUSP of Nature Refuge Certification.

Unfortunately, the Queensland government is not moving fast on this. Whether this is due to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic is hard to say. Regardless, we are still on track and will be certified soon!

The new certification will open up a new phase for Lot 46. We have asked the local Traditional Owners to help us name the site appropriately and to help welcome Lot 46 back into country, officially - stay tuned for these inspiring developments.

An Exceptional Transformation

After nearly a decade of careful management, the forest is maturing and has formed a beautiful canopy. We are delighted to see the magic unfolding - our Daintree staff report regular sightings of adult cassowaries with their chicks frequenting the property ... a true and inspiring indicator that restorartion works.

Dr Robert Kooyman, Rainforest Rescue's Scientific Advisor and one of Australia's most foremost rainforest experts, has this to say about Lot 46:

"This project provides one of the best global examples, of full property restoration in a critically important area with very high biodiversity values, that I have ever seen. It is a stand-out in terms of taking degraded land back toward rainforest, and through time will continue to accumulate structure, diversity, and habitat features that will contribute to local and regional conservation outcomes."

Lot 46 is a world class example of how effective restoration can recreate a natural ecosystem. If you haven't seen them already, check out these special ABC reports:

ABC Far North - Growing a Rainforest. A story about how an oil palm plantation was replanted by hand and transformed into a lush rainforest on the edge of the World Heritage-listed Daintree National Park.

ABC Landline - Rainforest Rescue: Transforming a derelict farm into rainforest. A project that saw this derelict palm oil plantation restored into thriving rainforest.

We look forward to bringing you more inspiring news about Lot 46, stay tuned!

Lot 46, 1972 to 2019
Lot 46, 1972 to 2019
Dr. Robert Kooyman and Madeleine Faught
Dr. Robert Kooyman and Madeleine Faught
Cassowaries on Lot 46
Cassowaries on Lot 46
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Lot 46 - Thriving - Martin Stringer Photography
Lot 46 - Thriving - Martin Stringer Photography

Lot 46 – A New Nature Reserve is being Created!

This beautiful land – almost 28 hectares – that you worked so hard to restore from its VERY messy time as an oil palm nursery is about to become a registered nature reserve. This means that Lot 46 has been restored significantly so that it qualifies for a nature refuge certification.

From the Department of Environment and Science of Queensland, “The Nature Refuges Program targets suitable properties and works with the landholders of those properties where there is a mutual conservation interest.

To determine whether an area of land may be suitable for targeting as a nature refuge, the Department of Environment and Science assesses the land's biodiversity values against the Nature Refuges Program objectives and conservation priorities. This assessment considers the significance of the potential nature refuge at a property, landscape and strategic level. Potential nature refuges are those that:

  • at a property level, contain significant conservation values that are of a sufficient size, condition and placement in the landscape to remain viable in the long-term;
  • at a landscape level, increase representation of the state's biodiversity and establish or maintain landscape linkages and corridors;”

-  you can read more about that here

Of course, we know that the land around it has tremendous conservation value, as under the Qld Government’s Regional Mapping Scheme the property is located within biodiversity precinct 3B Coopers Creek, one of the three highest priority precincts in the Daintree Lowlands. Lot 46 exhibits Regional Ecosystem 7.3.10 which is described as being ‘complex mesophyll vine forest’ which is listed as ‘endangered’ under the Qld Vegetation Management Act 1999.

So – it’s a good place for a strong restoration project in order to help provide greater habitat connectivity and support for biodiversity. The work that went into restoring the land also, and first, had to go into cleaning things up. 

“The areas that were farmed were covered in brambles or wild raspberry, and even the pigs and cassowaries couldn’t get through it it was that thick,” Joe Reichl, Rainforest Rescue’s Land Manager for many years, said. “There was lots and lots of rubbish.”

And now there isn’t. Now it’s gorgeous and you can find evidence of Cassowaries and Musky Rat-Kangaroos…and more. 

And it will be certified a Nature Reserve within the next month or so.

Not only will we let you know when it’s official – but it will also have a new official name to celebrate its return to nature!

Rainforest Rescue is grateful to all the hands, all the sweat, the hours…and the financial support that went into recovering this property. Soon we’ll be able to point to this new nature reserve with pride and call it by its new name.

Stay tuned!

An early restoration planting
An early restoration planting
Lot 46 from Above
Lot 46 from Above
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Lot 46 Today - Silvia Di Domenicantonio
Lot 46 Today - Silvia Di Domenicantonio

What is a Nature Refuge? 

We're glad you asked! As part of our covenant with our supporters, we are required to Protect Rainforests Forever, it wouldn't do to have properties in hand that weren't protected by a state level NO DEVELOPMENT EVER agreement, right? Right. The system we use is the Queensland State Government's DES Nature Refuge Certification Program.

And a Nature Refuge, since you asked, is "...a voluntary agreement between a landholder and the Queensland Government. A nature refuge agreement acknowledges a commitment to protect land with significant conservation value, while allowing compatible and sustainable land uses to continue. Landholders with a nature refuge continue to own and manage their land for enjoyment and/or to generate an income. Each nature refuge is negotiated directly with the landholder through a nature refuge agreement."

Further, A nature refuge agreement is:

  • negotiated between the department and the landholder, and provides a framework for sustainably managing a nature refuge and protecting its significant values
  • tailored to suit the landholder’s management needs
  • able to be negotiated with owners of freehold land, leaseholders of State land, government corporations that are separate legal entities from the Queensland Government, local governments, private companies and nature conservancies
  • able to be negotiated over the whole or a portion of the property, depending on the conservation values and the landholder’s wishes
  • perpetual, registrable on title and binds successive owners or lessees of the land. A nature refuge is the best way landholders can ensure the good land management practices and conservation works they have initiated will be continued when future generations or new owners take over. So, if a property changes hands, responsibility for the nature refuge rests with the new owners or lessees.

That last piece there, that's the best part. A nature refuge agreement is PERPETUAL. 

That means it exists forever onward.

It's REGISTRABLE ON TITLE. 

That means that it holds successive owners - should there ever be any other owners - to make that Nature Refuge safe forevermore.

HOW DO WE GET THERE?

The process is pretty straightforward but it tends to take a LONG TIME. The way it works: 

  1. The department primarily works with landholders who have been targeted through its priority programs. An area is generally targeted for a nature refuge based on an assessment by a nature refuge officer that will consider the condition of the land, current land uses and management practices, and proposed future uses. The nature refuge officer will also determine whether a property is consistent with current conservation priorities of the Nature Refuges Program.
  2. If suitable, the nature refuge officer will explain the process of developing a nature refuge agreement and declaring a nature refuge and will discuss any concerns the landholder may have. If the landholder and the department wish to proceed, a draft nature refuge agreement is developed in consultation with the landholder.
  3. Each nature refuge agreement is negotiated directly with the landholder and tailored to suit the management needs of the property, the needs of the landholder and the outcomes that the Queensland Government considers important. Once both parties are satisfied with the contents of the agreement, the landholder and Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef or their delegate sign the agreement.

Rainforest Rescue currently holds 22 Nature Refuges - and we've put two properties back into the National Parks. We have 5 properties in the process to become Nature Refuges now. 

Sadly, they are in limbo at the moment because they aren't LARGE blocks - though some of them do connect and some of them do extend Wildlife Corridors.

WHAT CAN WE DO AND WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH LOT 46?

Well, one thing we can do is work with the Australian Land Conservation Alliance. They work to advocate on behalf of conservation organisations to help make conservation a priority Australia-wide.

We can also sign on to requests from Australian conservation groups in partnership to raise awareness in government for the benefit of conservation, something that benefits everyone. Recently we were asked to sign on to a letter in support of increased conservation funding from the Queensland government, alongside such terrific organisations as the Australian Wildlife Conservancy, Bush Heritage, ALCA, Pew Charitable Trust, South Endeavour Trust, YINTJINGGA Aboriginal Corporation, EWAMIAN Aboriginal Corporation, Landcare Australia, Queensland Conservation, Queensland Farmers Association, NRM Regions Queensland, AgForce, MDH and Queensland Trust for Nature. Alliances of conservation and Landcare groups increases the awareness for conservation and managed land solutions that benefit all Australians, and ultimately, all life.

For Lot 46 we are keen to proceed with the Nature Refuge process. 

But if your other properties are in limbo at the moment, why would you add Lot 46 to the bottleneck?

Glad you asked. Lot 46 is significantly large enough at almost 28 Ha of restored rainforest that the Queensland DES will recognise it and move it through. 

We've been told. And so we believe. 

Lot 46 has gained significant media attention as a restoration success story.

To do that, we need your partnership and your financial support. Every time you put a property into the Refuge Assessment process, it's going to cost a few thousand dollars at least, plus the back and forth that comes with working with government processes. At the end - hooray! A nature Refuge is born and will be protected in perpetuity. Thanks to you!

We could not do this without you. I hope you really understand that you are making a real difference when you support this important work And it's our honour to do this with you.

Protect Rainforests Forever - with Rainforest Rescue!

Thanks for your interest and your support. 

If you’d like to learn more about the Nature Refuge process through the Queensland Government's DES, you can find out more, here.

Lot 46 1982
Lot 46 1982
Lot 46 2016
Lot 46 2016
From above and behind, Lot 46
From above and behind, Lot 46
Lot 46 - compare and celebrate what Nature can do!
Lot 46 - compare and celebrate what Nature can do!
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Organization Information

Rainforest Rescue

Location: MULLUMBIMBY, NSW - Australia
Website:
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Project Leader:
Branden Barber
MULLUMBIMBY, NSW Australia

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Combined with other sources of funding, this project raised enough money to fund the outlined activities and is no longer accepting donations.
   

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