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t: 07 4052 0542 | f: 07 4031 1364 | a: 1st Floor, 15 Lake Street, P O Box 2050, Cairns Q  4870
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Welcome to the latest issue of our quarterly e-newsletter. We hope it will keep you up to date with our activities and projects.

We've included information about a range of Wet Tropics research, events, publications and community groups.

If you have any comments, contact us on 07 4052 0531 or give us your feedback here.

Feel free to pass this newsletter on to your friends.

Andrew Maclean,
Executive Director

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Cairns Show

WTMA staff had an excellent opportunity to meet members of the community and provide educational material about the Wet Tropics during the Cairns Show. Donations of $1500 were received for local wildlife and conservation and will be shared by:


FNQ Wildlife Rescue to help build a pre-release flight aviary for raptors.
l C4 to produce interpretive material for their new visitor centre.
l BatReach to purchase paralysis-tick anti-toxin to treat native wildlife.

WTMA is also proud to announce that two staff members were awarded prizes in the iced banana cake category - Ellen Weber won first prize and Stacey Henry won third prize. The annual bake-off has developed a friendly rivalry between WTMA, DPI and DERM with the winner receiving a trophy.

WTMA stand at the Cairns Show

Ellen 1st prize with trophy, Louise Johns DPI,  Phil Hales DPI and F 2nd prize


WTMA was pleased to demonstrate its commitment to Rainforest Aboriginal people by participating in the NAIDOC week festival. Staff held a stall during the celebrations to promote awareness of Rainforest Aboriginal culture in the World Heritage Area. Donations were received for two local charities,  Wuchopperen - an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health centre, and FNQ Wildlife Rescue.

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Katrina as a cassowary

Cassowary Festival

As part of Threatened Species Week celebrations, a Cassowary Festival will be held at the Tanks Arts Centre, Edge Hill, Cairns, from 3.30pm - 8.30pm on Tuesday 8 September. There will be market stalls, wildlife information, cassowary films and other fun activities. Everyone is welcome. For further information see the WTMA events. The festival is being organised by the Authority and the Cassowary Recovery Team.

A Cassowary Summit is also being held on 8 September. To request an invitation please contact Stacey Henry.


Cassowary festival flyer

Competitions and Awards

Keep it Cool poster competition

Over 250 wonderful entries were received for the “Keep it Cool” poster competition. As part of the Cairns Festival, a selection of posters will be displayed at the Cairns Regional Gallery from Friday 21 August until Monday 7 September. The winners will receive prizes from Skyrail Rainforest Cableway and Big Cat Reef Cruises.

Verity Parkers picture

Ruby Rainbird with her picture

Daintree Discovery Centre

Visitors to the Daintree Discovery Centre will be treated to a new temporary display courtesy of the students from the local Alexandra Bay State School. The students were invited to research their favourite rainforest creature and to provide an illustration. The art display coincides with the Discovery Centre celebrating 20 years since its official opening. During this time the centre has introduced the special features of the World Heritage rainforest to thousands of visitors. The centre has also recently opened a new reptile and amphibian display.

Pam-Daintree Discovery Centre with Alexandra Bay School

Young Cassowary Awards 2009

Each year the Wet Tropics Management Authority recognises the work of students and school classes in helping to conserve the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. Winners will be recognised as part of the Cassowary Awards Ceremony on 7 November at Tjapukai Aboriginal Cultural Park. See our website for further information or to make nominations for the Young Cassowary Awards. Nominations close Friday 18 September.


Young Cassowary Awards 2008 at Hambledon State School


USS Essex

WTMA Executive Director, Andrew Maclean, and Manager of Community Engagement, Campbell Clarke, were pleased to accept an invitation from the US Consulate, to tour the USS Essex during its recent visit to Cairns. Copies of ‘From the Heart: celebrating 20 years of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area’, were presented to the Captain and his senior officers.

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CEO Andrew Maclean on board
USS Essex

East Rennell

WTMA successfully delivered a two week East Rennell training workshop in early June and received positive feedback from participants and partners. The Authority will endeavour to continue its relationship with the Lake Tegano World Heritage Association, which manages the East Rennell World Heritage Area. For further information visit our media page.

East Rennell group shot

New Caledonia

A delegation from the French Territory of New Caledonia visited the Authority on 14 May to discuss World Heritage management. The delegates, from various agencies, were all involved in the management of the recently listed Reefs and Lagoons of New Caledonia World Heritage Area.

The delegation met with Traditional Owners in the Goldsborough Valley and GBRMPA to talk about marine World Heritage management.

New Caledonia group shot


From the Heart book launch

WTMA’s new book celebrates 20 years of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. ‘From the Heart’ contains 80 pages of stories, artworks and pictures about people’s love and appreciation of the Area, from the fight for World Heritage listing to today’s tree planting activities, environmental education and tourism. The Honourable Steve Wettenhall MP, Member for Barron River, will be launching the book on Friday 14 August, along with several guest speakers including Mike Berwick, Peter Stanton, Henrietta Marrie and Linda Venn.

If you wish to attend please contact Campbell Clarke on 4052 0542.

Book cover shot

Wet Tropics magazine 2009 - 2010

WTMA has released a new edition of the Wet Tropics magazine. This edition is a celebration of the community and their enthusiasm and dedication to conservation in the Wet Tropics. The magazine explores the work of scientists, volunteers and wildlife carers and has lots of great information about our amazing wildlife. The magazine will be available free through visitor centres and from WTMA.

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Magazine cover

Cairns Festival T-shirts

Cairns City Council, in collaboration with WTMA, has produced a
T-shirt with a tree-kangaroo design by Sam Tupou for the Cairns Festival. The T-shirt will be for sale during the festival and proceeds will go to the Tree-kangaroo and Mammal Group, a community group based on the Atherton Tablelands dedicated to conserving tree-kangaroos and other native mammals


Tree-roo T-shirt


Cassowary DNA research underway

CSIRO senior research scientist, Dr David Westcott, is leading a collaborative DNA study, to which the Authority has contributed $50,000. This research will provide a reliable method for monitoring population trends, creating a model of how cassowaries use habitat and how their populations are structured. Several cassowary dung censuses have already been conducted around Mission Beach with help from volunteers. The next cassowary scat collection day will be held in Kuranda on Saturday 22 August. If you would like to volunteer please contact Margaret Genever at Kuranda Conservation or ring her on 4093 8835.

Cassowary DNA research Mission Beach (WTMA staff, Julia and Lana collecting scats)

National Register of Big Trees

The national register of Australia's biggest trees was launched in May and aims to record the five largest specimens of each tree species. Records will include the National Champion, State Champion, and Regional Champion. The register is an integrated list of Australian native trees and naturalised (exotic) trees. Many big trees are situated on privately owned land. Recognition of big tree preservation is a significant contribution to conservation on the part of the landowners. If you would like to nominate a big tree or for further information visit: www.nationalregisterofbigtrees.com.au or contact Derek McIntosh.

Lake Barrine Kauris

Surveys of rural landholders

Nick Emtage from the University of Queensland has completed comprehensive surveys of landholders’ natural resource management attitudes and practices in the Wet Tropics with funding from the Marine and Tropical Science Research Facility (MTSRF). 321 surveys were received from 1600 sent out. Nick’s research helped to identify the groups who are willing and able to promote healthy natural resource management. Nick’s four reports can be found on the RRRC website.

Cattle Grazing Beside WH Rainforest

Donkeys at Mt Baldy

QPWS Ranger, Pete McAulay, recently employed a team of five donkeys to help him with track maintenance on Mt Baldy in the Herberton Range State Forest. Faced with the challenge of transporting over 20 tonnes of materials up the steep slopes, the donkey team were agile and had no problems negotiating the two kilometre walking track to the summit, carrying small amounts of materials each time. To avoid introducing weed seeds via droppings, the donkeys were also fed for a week on a neighbouring property which had grasses common to the area.

Donkey scenic

Visitor centres

C4 Visitor Centre

The Community for Coastal and Cassowary Conservation (C4) has revamped its environment centre to educate visitors about cassowaries and other native wildlife in and around Mission Beach. The Authority supported the redevelopment with a grant of $10,000 and a large map of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area. The new environment centre was officially opened on Saturday 8 August by Senator Jan McLucas.

C4 visitor centre

C4 Peter Salleras (Chair of C4) and Jan McLucas 4 visitor centre opening Aug09

The Bat Hospital

WTMA contributed $10,000 towards the design of interpretive signage for the new visitor centre at The Bat Hospital. The official opening is being held at the International Club in Atherton at 7.30pm on Saturday 22 August. Guest speakers include Dr Les Hall, Dr David Westcott and Steve Parish. The Bat Hospital also has open days on 22 and 23 August from 3pm - 6pm. Entry is free and all are welcome. For further information see The Bat Hospital website.


Tolga Bat Hospital invatation

WHA governance

New Board directors

Two new Directors have been appointed to the WTMA Board for the next 18 months.

The new board members are Allison Halliday from the Malanburra Yidinji people, Traditional Owners from Goldsborough Valley, and Russell Butler Senior, a Bandjin Traditional Owner from Hinchinbrook Island.

Allison has been involved in driving Aboriginal participation in natural and cultural heritage for many years and participated in the drafting of the Wet Tropics Regional Agreement and Terrain NRM’s Aboriginal (Bama) Plan. She has a strong personal interest in promoting the importance of traditional knowledge on land management at all levels - local, national and international.


Allison Halliday

Russell served for 21years in the Australian Army before retiring in 1989. He is involved in progressing Girringun Aboriginal Corporation and Bandjin/Warrgamay business on country. He was also a founding member of Girringun Aboriginal Corporation and played a key role in the naming of Girringun National Park as a way of respecting its Traditional Owners.


Russell Butler

Economic activity of Australia’s World Heritage Areas

A recently published Australian Government Report identifies the Wet Tropics of Queensland and the Sydney Opera House as the two most significant World Heritage Areas in Australia in terms of economic impact. The report identifies and details the economic impacts of Australian terrestrial World Heritage Areas regionally, state-wide and nationally. The Australian Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and Arts (DEWHA) commissioned this report in July 2008. For further information or to see the full report visit the Australian Government website.

Table of WHAs

Implications of climate change for World Heritage properties

The Australian Government has released a new report which identifies that Australia's iconic World Heritage properties will experience increased risks from climate change. Sites such as the Wet Tropics of Queensland and Great Barrier Reef are identified as particularly vulnerable. The Australian National University assessed the exposure, potential impacts and adaptive capacity of our World Heritage properties to climate change. The report is the first comprehensive report by any country into the impacts of climate change on all of its World Heritage properties and will inform management plans and government policy on World Heritage and climate change adaptation plans. To see the full report visit the Australian Government website.

Climate change report


Cassowary Recovery Team

WTMA has recently convened a new Cassowary Recovery Team that builds on the work of the former Cassowary Advisory Group. The team helps to implement the Recovery Plan for the Southern Cassowary and will also advise the Authority's Board and Ministers on a range of cassowary conservation issues. Membership includes cassowary conservation groups, local governments, Federal and State government departments, research scientists and zoos.

For more information about cassowaries see WTMA’s cassowary page and the Australian Government page about the role of the Cassowary Recovery Team.

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Spread the word - cassowary cartoon

t: 07 4052 0542 | f: 07 4031 1364
a: 1st Floor, 15 Lake Street, P O Box 2050, Cairns Q  4870
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