Wet Tropics grants boost heritage and research initiatives in the Wet Tropics

Almost $60,000 in grants has been administered by the Authority to fund Traditional Owners and research students to deliver World Heritage focused projects that enrich the management of the Wet Tropics.

The Authority funds the projects through its two grant schemes – Small Grants Program for Traditional Owners and Student Research Grants for undergraduate students.

Entering its second year, the Small Grants Program supports Rainforest Aboriginal people to undertake bio-cultural activities that benefit the World Heritage Area in areas such as land management and the interpretation recording and preservation of culture.

Almost $30,000 has been shared between six different project groups in the World Heritage Area through the Small Grants Program in 2014.

“The Small Grants Program helps to strengthen our relationships with Traditional Owner groups and benefits whole communities as they achieve their aspirations for their country and their cultural heritage,” Wet Tropics executive director Andrew Maclean said.

The importance of the preservation of Rainforest Aboriginal cultural heritage was highlighted when the Wet Tropics was placed on the National Heritage List for its cultural values in 2012.

As one of the world’s most outstanding Learning Landscapes, the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area attracts a strong pool of students and researchers who specialise in tropical biodiversity.

“The range and calibre of our student research projects is very exciting. The many different aspects of research being undertaken in the Wet Tropics helps the Authority better manage, protect and conserve this irreplaceable landscape,” Mr Maclean added.

The Authority’s Student Research Grants is now in its third year. The grants support research in the environmental, social and cultural areas and has funded students to the tune of $27,000 for 2014.

The Wet Tropics grant scheme is funded by the Australian Government.

Successful Wet Tropics Small Grants 2014

Name of


Project Title

Project Summary Statement

Bagirbarra Coastal Inc


Bagirbarra Cultural Community Program

Sharing of key cultural information between elders and school children using tactile methods and demonstrations

Jaragun Pty Ltd


Capture and Recording of Bunna Binda Cultural Heritage Information and Knowledge

Cultural heritage information capture and recording with key elders. Transfer of information to keeping place.

Choorechillum PBC


Tablelands Indigenous Tourism Planning Forum

Tourism opportunity partnership development in Ngadjon traditional country

Gunggandji PBC


Cultural site in and around Yarrabah

Cultural site identification, recording and mapping at key Yarrabah sites.

Mullen Bun Goon Ltd


Recording cultural heritage values of carved trees and associated cultural heritage of South Johnson area

Search, identification and recording of significant carved trees with elders and youth. Cultural exchange and recording to keeping place.

Yarrabah Arts and Cultural Precinct

Rainforest Boardwalk Signage

Collaborative development of signage data and design to promote tourism and utilising key cultural heritage information.


Successful Wet Tropics Student Research Grants 2014


Name of student

 Research Proposal topic



Drought in rainforests, plant productivity and endophytes: Are they connected?

BUCKTON, Genevieve, JCU

Comparing water use strategies of lianas and trees in a lowland tropical rainforest.



Homogeneity and heterogeneity of rainforest rock art.

HAINES, Heather, GU

Linking climate and tree growth in tropical and subtropical Queensland.


Climate change implications for bushfire risk and vegetation types across a climatic

gradient in the wet tropics of north-eastern Australia.

McLean, Rebecca, SCU

An estimation of population, home range, sex ratios and relatedness of the southern cassowary (Casuarius casuarius johnsonii) using faecal DNA, sign survey and camera traps in the Daintree lowlands and Cedar Bay.


Ecosystem services of mammalian fungal dispersers.

PAZ, Claudia, JCU

Mycorrhizae community and tree response to drought in a tropical rainforest

ROBSON, Heather, JCU

Utilising eDNA (environmental DNA) as a surveillance tool for the critically endangered armoured mist frog (Litoria lorica) in the Wet Tropics.


Investigation and monitoring of health status of Lumholtz tree kangaroo with additional investigation comparing biomedical data of several species of tree kangaroo.


Population abundance, microhabitat resource use and ecology of the northern bettong Bettongia tropica.










Wet Tropics grants boost heritage and research initiatives in the Wet Tropics

Published: 05th Sep 2014

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