Land purchase to Save the Daintree

PURCHASE OF LOT 93 CAPE TRIBULATION ROAD, DIWAN IN THE DAINTREE LOWLAND RAINFOREST

PROJECT SNAPSHOT

Action: Purchase Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road at Diwan (RP 738999)

Area: 8.09 hectares

Location: Diwan, Daintree Lowland Rainforest, Queensland

Vegetation type: Lowland tropical rainforest classified as Simple-complex mesophyll to notophyll vine forest on moderate to poorly-drained alluvial plains of moderate fertility

Regional Ecosystem 7.3.10a is listed as “Of Concern” under the Vegetation Management Act 1999.

Endangered Ecological Community: Lowland tropical rainforest of the Wet Tropics ecological community is listed in the Endangered Category under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.

Threatened Species: Southern Cassowary (Casuarius casuarius johnsonii), Native Spiral Ginger (Cheilocostus potierae), Noah’s Walnut (Endiandra microneura), Climbing Pandan (Freycinetia percostata), Ant Plant (Myrmecodia beccarii), Malayan Brighteye (Torenia polygonoides).

Fundraising update for the 17th of August 2022.

Target to purchase and protect this property: $404,500.  

Amount raised: $353,590.

Remaining target: $50,910. 

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

 

Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest

HELP PURCHASE this property to stop development in the Daintree rainforest.

The high biodiversity and threatened species on Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road at Diwan have identified this property as our highest priority for acquisition.

As Daintree Rainforest land sales have rapidly escalated due to Covid-19 we urgently need to increase our buyback of land and directly compete with those that would develop the world's oldest rainforest. As we are witnessing an increase in clearing for housing development we must act now.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

BACKGROUND 

In 1982 the Queensland government approved a 1,136-lot rural residential subdivision in the Daintree. This resulted in two-thirds of the Daintree Lowland Rainforest being excluded from protection in the Daintree National Park and Wet Tropics World Heritage Area that was declared in 1988. Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road is one of these properties.

Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road is an 8.09-hectare freehold property is located at Diwan in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. It was created through the subdivision of land that occurred in 1982. Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road can be developed for housing subject to approval by the Douglas Shire Council.  

To prevent Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road from being developed for housing we will purchase and protect this property and ensure it is managed for conservation. We are working towards having all the properties we acquire included in the Daintree National Park Cape York Peninsula Aboriginal Land (CYPAL) estate. 

We have secured the option to purchase this property and now we have the challenge to raise $404,500. This includes a contribution towards the management and restoration of the land and ensuring that it is protected forever. As Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road is 8.09 hectares this represents a price of $5.00 per sqm. This provides a real and tangible outcome for your investment in nature conservation.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.   

Hutchinson Creek in the Daintree Rainforest

Lot 93 has a 375 m frontage on Hutchinson Creek

CONSERVATION VALUES

Before we make a commitment to purchase a Daintree Rainforest property for conservation we have ecologists undertake a comprehensive survey to confirm the conservation values.

A vegetation survey undertaken on the 16th of November 2021 identified 258 native plant species including five plant species listed on the Queensland Nature Conservation Act 1992. There are also 4 endemic plant species that have their distribution largely restricted to the Daintree lowlands. 

The survey identified the Malayan Brighteye (Torenia polygonoides). There are only six records of this plant in Australia. We were also able to record a range extension for the Sapindaceae tree species Rhysotoechia flavescens. The previously known northern limit of this species was from the Daintree village, while its distribution extends south to near Tully.

Other plants of importance on Lot 93 include the Hope’s Cycad (Lepidozamia hopei). This species of Cycad is the largest growing in the world and was once utilised by Aboriginal people as a food source. It has evolutionary links dating back some 200 million years and along with other ancient species form some of the reasons why the Wet Tropics World Heritage area has been afforded protection within the National Parks estate.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

Hope’s Cycad (Lepidozamia hopei)

Hopes Cycad on Lot 93 with cone developing on this female plant

Lot 93 is located on Hutchinson Creek which flows off Thornton Peak. This area is a centre for the potential evolution of new species. During the vegetation survey, the botanist and ecologist identified a potentially new species of Bolwarra (Eupomatia) was identified from Lot 93 and additional investigations will now follow.  

Purchasing this property for conservation will protect habitat for the Endangered Southern Cassowary. Many food plants for the Cassowary are present on the lot in the form of Laurels (Lauraceae), Mahogany (Meliaceae) and several species of Figs, Palms and fleshy Myrtaceous plants. Regional ecosystem 7.3.10a is listed as Essential Cassowary habitat by the Queensland government. The vegetation on the creek edge possesses large specimens of Kuranda Quandong (Elaeocarpus bancroftii), Northern Silky Oak (Cardwellia sublimis), Spur Mahogany (Dysoxylum pettigrewianum), Candlenut (Aleurites rockinghamensis), Blackbean (Castanospermum australe), Fan Palms (Licuala ramsayi), Alexander Palm (Archontophoenix alexandrae), Damson Plum (Terminalia microcarpa) and Briars Silky Oak (Musgravea heterophylla).

Evidence of the Southern Cassowary using the property was confirmed by dung. Cassowaries are regularly sighted in the adjoining Daintree National Park and on nearby properties.

An aquatic ecology survey was undertaken in Hutchinson Creek on the 375 m of the frontage of Lot 93 and also 600 m upstream, and about 200 m downstream of the property. The most significant finding of the survey was the discovery of a small population of Daintree Rainbowfish (Cairnsichthys bitaeniatus). This species is on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, where it is classified as Critically Endangered. This species is known only from some small tributary streams of Hutchinson and Cooper creeks.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

Hutchinson Creek in the Daintree Rainforest 

Endangered Ecological Community

The Daintree Lowland Rainforest itself has now been identified as part of an Endangered Ecological Community. In November 2021 the Australian Government listed the lowland tropical rainforest of the Wet Tropics ecological community, in the Endangered Category under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999. The listing is effective as of Friday 26 November 2021 and includes the Wet Tropics of North Queensland, from near Ingham (just south of the Cardwell Range) in the south to north around Cape Tribulation. While now listed as Endangered the Daintree Lowland Rainforest is still not fully protected. The freehold properties in the Daintree lowland remain at risk from rural residential development. 

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road at Diwan

Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road adjoins the Daintree National Park 

One negative impact of COVID-19 is the number of people seeking refuge in rural Australia. This is resulting in significant interest from people wanting to develop the Daintree Lowland Rainforest for housing.

The Daintree Lowland Rainforest is one of the oldest rainforests on Earth and provides a refuge for wildlife and ancient flowering plants. It holds exceptionally high biodiversity and conservation value and is the largest continuous area of tropical rainforest remaining in Australia. With almost 200 undeveloped properties remaining in private ownership, the future of the Daintree is yet to be determined. Will it be increased development and urbanisation, or will it be the winding back of the disastrous subdivision to save the Daintree.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

Clearing in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest 

We have purchased nineteen Daintree Rainforest properties in the past two years, we cannot stop now. If we don't keep up the pace, many more properties will be lost to development. 

Every property we purchase for conservation in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest will help reverse the impacts of the disastrous 1980’s rural residential subdivision.

Together, we can ensure development in the Daintree Rainforest won’t go any further. All we need to do is buy this freehold property and add protect it in the Daintree National Park estate.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. Each $5.00 you donate will purchase and protect one sqm of the Lowland Daintree Rainforest.  

For the Daintree Rainforest,

Kelvin Davies

Founder

Rainforest 4 Foundation

Phone: 0437 423 119

P.S. You can donate now online or if you want to donate with a cheque/money order or through a direct deposit please see our Ways to Donate page.

P.P.S. If you have any questions about the purchase and protection of Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest please email me at [email protected] or call me on 0437 423 119. 

THANK YOU TO HALFCUT

This project to purchase and protect land in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest is a partnership involving the Rainforest 4 Foundation, Jabalbina Yalanji Aboriginal Corporationand fellow non-profit HalfCut.

Thanks to HalfCut and their wonderful supporters. The fundraising success of HalfCut 2021 has enabled us to purchase multiple properties and to pay a deposit on Lot 18 Daley Road at Kimberley in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest. 

Please, will you help purchase and protect the Daintree Rainforest. Every $5.00 you donate will help save one square metre of the Daintree. If you donate $25 you will help save five square meters of essential Cassowary habitat! A donation of $50 will help save ten square meters and $100 will help save twenty square meters of the World Heritage value Daintree Rainforest.

HalfCut co-founders Jimmy and Jess

HalfCut Co-founders Jess and Jimmy 

Background information on the Daintree Lowland Rainforest 

The Daintree Lowland Rainforest is one of the oldest rainforests on Earth having survived undisturbed for over 120 million years. It holds exceptionally high biodiversity and conservation value and is the largest continuous area of tropical rainforest remaining in Australia.

Rainforests once covered much of eastern Australia, however, as conditions became drier the rainforest contracted and today the Daintree provides a refuge for many unique species. The Bennett’s Tree-kangaroo, Musky Rat-kangaroo, and the Southern Cassowary can be found here, as well a number of endemic plant species that have retained the same primitive characteristics of their ancestors. The flora of the Daintree contains an almost complete record of the evolution of plant life on Earth, including extremely ancient flowering plant families found nowhere else.

In 1982 the Queensland government approved an 1,136-lot rural residential subdivision in the Daintree. This resulted in two-thirds of the Daintree Lowland Rainforest being excluded from protection in the Daintree National Park and Wet Tropics World Heritage Area that was declared in 1988. The development that followed has resulted in fragmentation of the rainforest with the construction of roads and the building of hundreds of houses. Settlement has introduced exotic plants that have become weeds and domestic dogs and traffic that are a threat to wildlife. Because the land in question is in private ownership, the only option to resolve the issue has been the purchase and protection of additional lands to expand Daintree National Park.

Our vision for the Daintree Lowland Rainforest is to buy back land to remove the threat of further development and to address the impact of past development while supporting the Traditional Owners, the Eastern Kuku Yalanji people in caring for country.

While we purchase land at risk of development for housing we also purchase other freehold properties without development approvals to reverse the impacts of the disastrous subdivision by closing and revegetating obsolete roads.

Since 1992 non-profit organisations have purchased seventy-five properties for conservation. 

Threat to Wildlife, Climate People and Planet

Daintree Rainforest is regarded as an iconic national treasure for its unique evolutionary history and tremendous conservation value. A number of rare and endangered species are found within Daintree National Park, including the Southern Cassowary, large flightless birds that in Australia are found only in the wet tropical rainforests of Queensland. Southern Cassowaries consume over 150 different fruits and play a vital role as seed dispersers in the rainforest. Due to the destruction and fragmentation of their rainforest habitats, these large charismatic birds are classified as Vulnerable to extinction.

More than 430 other bird species have also been recorded in Daintree National Park, including rare or range-restricted species like the Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher and the Lesser Sooty Owl, making the Daintree a Globally Important Bird Area. Many unique marsupials, reptiles, and amphibians are also found in the Daintree Rainforest including the Bennett’s Tree-kangaroo, Musky Rat-kangaroo, Spotted-tailed Quoll, and Boyd’s Forest Dragon.

A risk to the Daintree comes from development for housing and fragmentation of the rainforest, which jeopardises the integrity of the ecosystem with increased human traffic and the introduction of exotic species. Expanding settlement results in the spread of exotic plants that become weeds and stress to wildlife from human traffic and introduced dogs. Further buyback of land for conservation is required urgently as there are calls for an upgrade to Cape Tribulation Road, to build a bridge over the Daintree River, and to provide a reticulated electricity supply that would all lead to further development.

The purchase of additional properties will prevent further development to these sensitive areas while protecting and restoring critical habitat for wildlife. It will also allow for winding back past development through the closing of roads and the revegetation of land as habitat for Threatened species.

Solution

We have identified this property at Lot 93 Cape Tribulation Road as a priority acquisition. We are working to purchase and transfer ownership of land to the Daintree National Park. This will strengthen protection for the Daintree Lowland Rainforest, help reverse the negative impacts of rural residential development, and offer the best path forward for ensuring the world’s most ancient rainforest continues to thrive for generations to come.

Buying land in the Daintree helps us to reverse the impacts of the disastrous 1980’s rural residential subdivision. All donations are tax-deductible, and receipts will be issued.

Please, make your tax-deductible donation now to help purchase and protect Lot 93 CapeTribulation Road in the Daintree Lowland Rainforest.