As part of National Threatened Species Week 2015, Wildlife
Queensland launched a new project at Demeio Park in Logan, all made possible by a grant from the Gambling Community Benefit Fund. As part of the Society’s overarching ‘Safe @ Home’ campaign, the project aims to improve the ecological and aesthetic potential of Demeio Park situated right next to Berrinba Wetlands and within the Karawatha to Flinders Peak Corridor.
Degraded by years of human interference and urban development this area provides critical habitat and connectivity to a diverse range of species which will directly benefit from the project’s objectives. The project also provides an opportunity for the wider community to be involved in improving a local area which they will enjoy for years to come, as well as gain knowledge and skills in ecosystem management.
The project was officially launched on Saturday, 12 September, when the first assessment of the site was made in
order to determine the diversity and spread of fauna across the entire park and develop a species list. A less-than-typical approach, known as the ‘point count method’, was used to achieve this: 22 volunteers, including members of Birdlife and Birds Queensland, were positioned in stationary, evenly distributed locations ranging from recreational zones and water front to thick bush, and asked to record every species seen or heard within a 30-minute period.
It was an extremely successful morning with the team identifying a total of 59 species during the recording timeframe. As seen in the graph, the levelling off of the species curve shows it would have been unlikely to have discovered any further species if the survey time were extended – a very positive sign. The event concluded with a chance to make new friends, compare photos and data, and enjoy a well-earned breakfast.
Results of the event will contribute to the first phase of the project which involves a number of ecological assessments used to determine which flora and fauna species inhabit the site and which ones should and shouldn’t be there. These studies will focus in particular on species classed as threatened under the Nature Conservation Act, such as the wallum froglet (Crinia tinnula), and will be essential in determining which rehabilitation techniques will provide the best ecological outcome.
The second phase will involve weed control, revegetation schemes and the installation of nest boxes. Conducting habitat rehabilitation creates the potential for a resilient and self-sustaining ecosystem with an improved structure, species composition and function, which can be integrated into the larger landscape and support sustainable livelihoods.
As a non-for-profit organisation, Wildlife Queensland is dependent on volunteer assistance and believes that the best outcomes are achieved when the community itself contributes. Wildlife Queensland welcomes everyone to take part in its new Demeio Park Project. Please contact the project leader directly or join the project’s event page on Facebook to find out how you could take part.
Hannah Stevens, University of Queensland placement student