Dateline: April 2016

As the rainforest grows up, the invertebrate population at CCRRS is changing.Whereas our commonest butterfly used to be the ubiquitous Wanderer, in America the Monarch (Danaus plexippus), as we have eliminated its larval foodplants (Gomphocarpus spp. and Asclepias curassavica) it no longer breeds at CCRRS. In 2011 we planted a dozen or so Pararistolochia praevenosa vines, which thrived; when they produced fruits we planted more. This year the forest edges were a-flutter with the rare Richmond Birdwing Butterfly (Richmondia ornithoptera), which is definitely back again, for keeps, we hope.


Dateline: 2 June 2014

The vegetation survey of the upper part of the property having been completed and report compiled, we have pleasure in presenting the table of the numbers of rare species recorded.



Common Name

Acacia orites


Mountain Wattle

Acronychia baeuerlenii


Byron Bay Acronychia

Actephila grandifolia


No common name

Archidendron muellerianum


Veiny Laceflower

Ardisia bakeri


No common name

Argophyllum nullumense


Silver Leaf

Assa darlingtonii


Pouched Frog

Basistoa transversa (selwynii)


Yellow Satinheart or

Three-leaved Bosistoa

Carronia multisepalea


No common name

Citrus australasica


Finger Lime

Cupaniopsis newmanii


Long-leaved Tuckeroo

Endiandra hayesii


Rusty Rose Walnut or

Velvet laurel

Floydia praealta


Big Nut or Bull Nut or Ball Nut or Possum Nut int. al.

Fontainea australis


Southern Fontainea

Helicia ferruginea


Hairy Honeysuckle or

Rusty Oak

Lastreopsis smithiana


Smooth Shield Fern

Macadamia tetraphylla


Rough-shelled Macadamia

Rough-shelled Queensland Nut

Rough-leaved Queensland Nut

Rough-shelled Bush Nut Queensland Nut

Poppel Nut int. al.

Menura alberti


Albert’s Lyrebird

Mischocarpus ailae


Woolly Bush Apple

Ochrosia moorei


Southern Ochrosia

Palmeria foremanii


No common name

Phaleria chermsideana


Scrub Daphne

Phyllodes imperialis smythersii


Pink Underwing Moth

Ptiloris paradiseus


Paradise Riflebird

Rhodamnia maideniana


Smooth Scrub Turpentine

Streptothamnus moorei


No common name

Tapeinosperma repandulum


No common name




Dateline: 13 June 2013

After a turbulent time in press, the Foundress’s book White Beech will be published in the US and UK at the beginning of 2014. Advance copies will be available in Australia from the beginning of November. She is planning a special and possibly rather arduous promotion tour of neglected rural centres. Seeya!


Dateline: 28th November 2011

Lui Weber reports: The Forests of Eastern Australia is now the 35th global biodiversity hotspot! With over 8000 vascular plant species and more than 2000 endemic to the hotspot the area easily meets the 1500 endemic species criteria for a global biodiversity hotspot. And with 77% of natural vegetation cleared or modified it sadly also meets the 70% clearing criteria for a global biodiversity hotspot.
I am not sure why this is not bigger news. Only a minor blog website is reporting it: Forests of Eastern Australia are the World’s Newest Biodiversity Hotspots
The book where the paper is published is here: Biodiversity Hotspots


Dateline: 23rd June 2011

The toughened leaves of the subtropical rainforest canopy protect the understorey from all extremes of temperature. Once the forest is cleared frost is a regular visitor, for as many as nine nights a year, usually in July. This year the frost arrived at Cave Creek early, on 23 June. Frost tends to slide down steep slopes and pool against the forest edge. It will damage and even kill young trees in new plantings. This is one reason for giving seedling trees plenty of time to harden off before they are planted out.


Dateline: 31st May 2011

Container-grown trees are ready and available free of charge to anyone trying to rehabilitate Complex Notophyll Vine Forest or similar within 20 km radius of Natural Bridge (south-east Queensland). Please go here for a list of available trees. If you’re interested, simply email




Dateline: 23rd May 2011

The Foundress of CCRRS has had an article she wrote on the floods of December 2010 selected for inclusion in “The Best Australian Science Writing 2011” to be published by the University of NSW Press. See:


Dateline: 21st March 2011

After five months of waiting for its fruit to ripen, during which time it had to be protected from all the forest animals who longed to eat it, we succeeded in collecting mature seed of the small Bolwarra, Eupomatia bennettii. We have now potted on no fewer than eighty seedlings. The genus, the only one in the family of Eupomatiaceae, consists of four species. One grows only in New Guinea, another only in the Daintree. E. bennettii is much smaller than the better known shrub E. laurina; it consists of a single stalk with a single remarkable terminal flower, with fleshy staminodes that exude a musky scent and a sticky substance that attracts their pollinator, a small brown weevil called Elleschodes hamiltonii. Similar fossils dating from the Cretaceous have been found in America.


Dateline: 9 May 2017 

CCRRS did not expect to get caught up in the skirts of Cyclone Debbie, or the 800mm of rain she dumped on us over the last two days of March 2017. During the onslaught power and phone lines were brought down and the causeway across Cave Creek was badly damaged. Power was not restored for almost six days; all food spoiled, and Professor Greer who was in residence at the time had to live on dry bread and peanut butter for the duration. Unable to get out or back in again, she had no phone signal either.
Damage to infrastructure in the upper Numinbah Valley has been considerable; landslides closed many roads, and it will take months to get them all safe to use. At CCRRS a chunk of recently planted rainforest detached itself from the hillside and slid into a gully. Our very first planting from May 2003 was smashed when a huge old Hoop Pine, part of the remains of a plantation the QWPS should have felled years ago, fell across our boundary. The forest is full of leaning amd fallen trees. Thousands of the broken branches called ‘widowmakers’ hang in the canopy, ready to fall as the foliage decays. The forest will take all this in its stride, but it hurts to see.













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