Catchment soon to see relief from brute weed

Catchment soon to see relief from brute weed

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Lowland subtropical rainforest in the Upper Mudgeeraba catchment, classified as Critically Endangered in Australia, will soon see relief from a dense woody weed which has been plaguing the area. The Devils Fig is suspected of poisoning local species and causing injuries to animals and people. Thanks to funding from the Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines, and the Australian Department of Environment and Energy, the upcoming restoration project will rehabilitate large areas ravaged by Devils Fig.

Devils Fig is an introduced species from Central America, easily spread via birds and water. A rapid and aggressive grower, Devils Fig is highly invasive and can substantially alter waterway environments. In doing so, it displaces native plants and changes the habitat of many animals.

Restoration works, which started in October 2016, will remove Devils Fig during its flowering season (late-spring and early summer) to prevent established individuals setting seed.

Healthy Waterways and Catchments CEO, Ms Julie McLellan said that “recovering Critically Endangered rainforest in the Gold Coast hinterland is vital to sustaining the habitats for many native plants and animals, some of which are classified as endangered themselves.”

“Species under threat by the influx of Devils Fig include the native macadamia, spiny crayfish, cascade tree frog, the Richmond Birdwing butterfly and its host vine.”

“This strategic project is aiming to remove Devils Fig in the headwaters of Mudgeeraba Creek. By doing so, it will prevent the spread and proliferation of this exotic weed downstream. This is just one of the many projects that we are implementing to help us to protect and enhance natural assets on behalf of the Queensland community” Ms McLellan said.

Local landholder and President of the Gold Coast Catchment Association, Wal Mayr is excited to see the development of the project.

Wal Mayr said “This vital investment enhances the conservation value of World Heritage Springbrook National Park and also compliments the work being carried out on adjoining City of Gold Coast Conservation Reserves and Private Nature Refuges.”

“It is the last piece of the puzzle for one of the largest areas of conserved land in the Gold Coast Hinterland.”

The project comes after extensive consultation with local landholders, the Gold Coast Catchment Association, City of Gold Coast Natural Area Management Unit, and the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service.

If you are interested in learning more about this restoration project, please contact Healthy Waterways and Catchments Southern Area Manager, Paul Donatiu on 0437 910 685.


For media enquiries or to organise an interview, please contact:

Heylee Menzies

T: (07) 3177 9100


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