Threatened species still exist here such as the brush-tailed rock-wallaby Petrogale penicillata
Photo © Wildlfie Queensland
After many years of campaigning by a broad range of organisations, including Wildlife Queensland, this sixty km bushland corridor from Karawatha forest (Brisbane southern suburbs), through Greenbank Army Reserve to Flinders Peak (near Ipswich) and down to the Wyaralong Dam (near Boonah) has been protected legislatively.
Wildlife Queensland is also pleased with the recent announcement on 21 February of Queensland Rail’s transfer of 126 ha of bushland at Larapinta, known as the glider forest, to the Department of Environment and Resource Management to be preserved as part of this important wildlife corridor. It is hoped however that increased public access to this designated green space will not have detrimental effects on the vegetation and wildlife.
This corridor is now defined and registered and will trigger provisions of the Regional Plan to prevent urban development within the corridor. Wildlife Queensland would have preferred additional amendments to the boundary to include additional wetlands and better connectivity established with other sections of the landscape. However this corridor is now protected for its environmental, economic, social and cultural values.
Wildlife Queensland in their submissions advocated that the landscape and biodiversity values, as well as the ecological integrity of the corridor, are not to be compromised. The need for public lands where a range of recreational pursuits may be practiced as well as additional areas for Queensland’s Protected Area Estate was acknowledged. However more robust, potentially environmentally damaging pursuits should not be located so as to place areas of high environmental or cultural value at risk. The area supports regional ecosystems no longer abundant in the area and poorly represented in the Protected Area Estate. Species such as the powerful owl, the brush tailed rock wallaby, koala and at least three species of gliders all have been recorded from the area. The spotted tail quoll is likely be positively confirmed in the Greenbank and possibly the Flinders sections as part of ongoing surveys. Lloyd’s native olive and Flinders plum occur as well as other plants such as Trachymene incisa and various Gahnia spp with limited or restricted distribution.
The FGK Corridor is a refuge for koalas Phascolarctos cinereus
Photo © Wildlfie Queensland
The Flinders Karawatha Corridor Conservation partnership was first established in February 2004. In recent times an extensive consultation program was undertaken and opportunities provided for stakeholders and interested parties to offer their views on the proposed boundary and draft vision for the corridor. Although a relatively small number of responses were received (56 in total) a number of key actions arose in response:
- Comments regarding wildlife and people movements through the Logan motorway were noted. Green infrastructure for people and wildlife to facilitate movement through the corridor will be a critical theme for the land use plan.
- A minimum corridor width of 350m has been established and this is to be negotiated wherever feasible.
- Additional green space and environmental outcomes have been achieved at the northern end of the corridor. Land has been acquired by Brisbane City between Karawatha and Greenbank Military Training Area.
- There are no conflicts now with committed developments or other statutory planning processes.
Now it is time to move on to phase two of the five year vision – a plan for the corridor including a strategy for future investment and management of the corridor. The corridor will be managed by the South East Queensland Regional Implementation Group – a partnership of government and private agencies. The management plan is scheduled for preparation by April 2012 although certain events may extend this timeframe. This will be followed by determining how the publicly owned lands will be managed in the long term. There is an indication that it will be some time, at least two years, before consultation and negotiation with private landholders who are willing to provide conservation protection or access to their land will commence.
The South East Queensland Regional Implementation Group is seeking ideas and views on the management plan for this corridor. Local knowledge has already been useful in developing a greater understanding of the natural and recreational values of the corridor.
Contact the Secretariat on (07) 5451 2281, email for further information or visit the Department of Environment and Resource Management website.
For more information on Wildlife Queensland's activities, call us on +61 7 3221 0194 or send us an email.