Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary in south-east Queensland has been expanded to almost 200 hectares, after the title for a 26.1-hectare parcel of land was officially transferred to Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) this week. The extension represents a 15% increase in area for the sanctuary and will provide additional protection for the diversity of wildlife recorded at the site.
Now encompassing 196.1 hectares in the hinterland of the Sunshine Coast, Curramore takes in an array of habitats including rainforest, tall eucalypt and grassy open forests. The variety in the landscape is reflected by the diversity of animal life it supports: more than 700 native species have been documented by AWC scientists since the sanctuary was first established in 2003 such as koalas, glides and birdwing butterflies. Threatened species at the sanctuary include the Koala, Marbled Frogmouth, Grey-headed Flying Fox, and Golden-tipped Bat, as well as one of Australia’s largest butterflies, the Richmond Birdwing.
The expansion area increases protection for threatened wildlife and connects Curramore to the road, providing better access for the AWC team to carry out weed control and conduct wildlife surveys. It also provides further protection for the headwaters of Little Cedar Creek (home to the endangered Maleny Spiny Crayfish) and increases connectivity with neighbouring protected areas across the Maleny Plateau.
AWC’s management strategy at Curramore focuses on large-scale weed control, targeting highly invasive Lantana, coupled with fire management to restore the open grassy understorey and supress weeds. At the same time, AWC conducts comprehensive, long-term monitoring of ecological health. In the latest survey conducted in October-November 2021, AWC ecologists documented three different species of gliders, as well as the threatened Tusked Frog.
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