Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary expanded to protect endangered wildlife

The formal transfer of title to a 26.1 hectare parcel of land to the Australian Wildlife Conservancy this week has enabled the expansion of Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary in southeast Queensland by nearly 200 hectares. The extension represents a 15% increase in the area of ​​the sanctuary and will provide additional protection for the diversity of fauna recorded at the site.

Now encompassing 196.1 hectares in the Sunshine Coast hinterland, Curramore features a range of habitats including rainforest, tall eucalypts and grassy open woodland. The variety of the landscape is reflected in the diversity of animal life it supports: over 700 native species have been documented by Australian Wildlife Conservancy (AWC) scientists since the sanctuary was established in 2003, such as koalas, gliders and bird-winged butterflies. Endangered 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 endangered 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 additional protection for the headwaters of Little Cedar Creek (home to the endangered Maleny Spiny Crayfish) and increases connectivity to nearby protected areas on the Maleny Plateau.

AWC’s management strategy at Curramore focuses on broad-scale weed control, targeting the highly invasive Lantana, combined with fire management to restore open grassy understory and suppress weeds. At the same time, the AWC conducts comprehensive, long-term monitoring of ecological health. In the last survey conducted in October-November 2021, AWC ecologists documented three different species of gliders, as well as the threatened tusked frog.

Top of the image: Over 700 native animal species are found at Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary, including the sugar glider and endangered tusked frog; center of images: Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary expansion area; image above: Klaus Runde leads AWC’s weed control work at the Curramore Wildlife Sanctuary, battling lantana. All images credit: A Howe/AWC

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