North Queensland Naturalist 49 (2019): 1-13

A flora and fauna survey of the Wyndham Sandy Creek Nature Refuge near Mt Garnet in north Queensland

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Michael S. Anthony, Donald C. Franklin and members of the North Queensland Natural History Group

Abstract

The North Queensland Natural History Group conducts flora and fauna surveys of properties using the volunteer efforts of members. Here, we report on a survey of the western half of Wyndham Sandy Creek Nature Refuge near Mt Garnet over six days in November 2017, with motion-sensor cameras left in place until January 2018. The vegetation, reptiles and amphibians present in six 2-ha plots in granite landscapes were assessed, incidental observations noted, and ten motion-sensor cameras left in place for more than two months. We identified variation in vegetation on granite substrates associated with slope and rock cover, and recorded 90 species of woody plant, 48 birds, fourteen reptiles, six amphibians and seven mammals. Sixteen faunal species were detected in images from motion-sensor cameras including six not otherwise recorded. Four plant species recorded are strongly associated with an area of endemism centred on Irvinebank, two of them being listed as threatened. Prevalence of one of these, the leguminous shrub Large-flowered Lamprolobium (Lamprolobium grandiflorum) is particularly noteworthy as it has a highly restricted range and is listed by the IUCN as Endangered. Wyndham Sandy Creek is the first conservation reserve from which the species has been recorded. This survey demonstrates the value of even short-term surveys conducted and recorded within a systematic framework. A professionally prepared video of the survey can be viewed at https://mynortherngulf.org/wildlife-management-2/ (select “The Pinnacle Field Weekend”).