Rainforest Recovery Network forms

October 3, 2019

A new group focused on threatened rainforest species has formed in the Wet Tropics region.

The Rainforest Recovery Network is bringing together scientists, government bodies, conservation groups, traditional owners, natural resource management organisations and industry to improve the lot of cassowaries, Mabi forest and coastal rainforest.

Terrain NRM’s Tony O’Malley said the network’s first role was identifying priority sites for habitat improvement in the Wet Tropics. 

“We are identifying the best places to invest in to benefit rainforest species,’’ he said.  “Funding will help with their recovery through revegetation, weed management and habitat protection.”

The network has formed as part of a new ‘Building Rainforest Resilience’ project which also includes a landholder incentives program, community grants and a fresh look at ways to reduce cassowary deaths on roads. This project is supported by Terrain NRM through funding from the Australian Government’s National Landcare Program.

Mr O’Malley said the endangered southern cassowary, Mabi forest which is a type of forest only found on the Atherton Tablelands, and littoral rainforest which grows on the coast, were the main focuses.

“Now we have a network to drive the best possible multi-species outcomes because it includes representatives from the Cassowary Recovery Team, the Mabi Action Group and the Littoral Rainforest Working Group,’’ he said. 

Network members Kylie Freebody from the Tablelands Regional Council and Cr Jeff Baines from the Cassowary Coast Regional Council said sharing knowledge across groups benefitted everyone involved.

“Getting together means we’re not reinventing the wheel – it’s an integrated approach,’’ Cr Baines said.  “We’re happy to see funding going into on-ground works.”

For information about the Building Rainforest Resilience Project, contact Terrain NRM’s Tony O’Malley on 0437 728 190 or email tony.omalley@terrain.org.au