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New South Wales: Quoll Headquarters - 164 hectares - Steve Haslam

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Claravale PDF Print E-mail
Written by Evan   
Friday, 21 October 2011 01:23

 

QLD: Claravale - Gill and Eunice Campbell

http://www.claravale.webls.net/

 

Gill and Eunice Campbell are the owners of 'Claravale', a property located approximately 50km northeast of Mitchell, Queensland.  The property has been owned by the Campbell family since 1890, primarily being a holistically managed livestock producing property for the dedication of a wildlife sanctuary, as well as being used for tourism through a campsite and 50km of road ways accessible to the public.  It is Gill and Eunice's intent to continue these property uses, with the potential addition of an educational element.  4,000 acres of the sanctuary are protected in perpetuity through a Nature Refuge agreement with the Queensland Government, established in 2000 as Mount Armour Nature Refuge.  A further 2,000 acres has been fenced off to control livestock grazing under an agreement with Greening Australia.  Although much of Claravale is cleared for grazing, each of these areas have extensive vegetation corridors throughout, all of which link up with virgin lands.  This practice of preserving habitat and protecting wildlife has been proven to benefit the livestock producing capabilities of the land.

 

Gill spruiks the benefits of the sustainable environmental management of Claravale, stating that to maintain essential healthy soils in the long-term you must look after the environment the way nature intended, not just the sections that happen to be aesthetic to people.  He points to past civilisations that have collapsed as a result of exhausting resources, likening them to the damage that has been done to formerly healthy ecosystems through the European style farm management that has been present in Australia for little more than 200 years - not to mention the increased costs of trying to keep degraded lands producing by patching over the underlying problems with technological advances.  Gill stresses that the key to Claravale's success has been the balance he and his family have been able to maintain between nature and their grazing regime.

 

The sanctuary covers 13,000 hectares in four leasehold and one freehold lot, the latter of which is largely covered by the Mount Armour Nature Refuge.  Running north to south and covering approximately 15 km are three main valley systems with parallel stark sandstone uplands, the easternmost of which is the most southerly spur of the Carnarvon Ranges and features extensive basalt capping of between 15-20 million years, creating an inverted landscape.  Additionally, there are two basalt caps of a few acres each on the western upland.  The valley floor sediments are 130-150 million years, being within the Jurassic to Cretaceous periods.

 

 

Vegetation on the lower valley areas of Claravale is dominated by poplar box (Eucalyptus populnea), with silver-leaved ironbark (E. melanophloia), white cypress pine (Callitris columellaris), false sandalwood (Eremophila mitchellii), brigalow (Acacia harpophylla), wilga (Geijera parvifolia), Queensland bottle trees (Brachychiton rupestris) and associated species occupying valley slopes.  Dominant on the basalt soils are mountain coolabah (Eucalyptus orgadophila), red bloodwood (Corymbia gummifera), white cypress pine, silver-leaved ironbark and prickly pine (Bursaria spinosa), while on the sandstone uplands gum-topped ironbark (Eucalyptus decorticans), brown bloodwood (Corymbia trachyphloia), budgeroo (Lysicarpus angustifolius), furry oak (Allocasuarina inophloia), currawong (Acacia sparsiflora), lancewood (Acacia petraea) and numerous shrubby wattles (Acacia spp.) feature heavily.

 

Wildlife is abundant on Claravale, with 129 bird, 21 mammal, 27 reptile and 6 amphibian species being recorded to date.  Examples of species to be found on the sanctuary include the black-striped wallaby (Macropus dorsalis), Herbert's rock wallaby (Petrogale herberti), northern brown bandicoot (Isoodon macrourus), white-striped mastiff bat (Tadarida australia), eastern long-necked turtle (Chelodina longicollis), emerald-spotted tree frog (Litoria peronii), superb fairy-wren (Malurus cyaneus), sacred kingfisher (Todiramphus sanctus), emu (Dromaius novaehollandiae), blue-faced honeyeater (Entomyzon cyanotis) and sugar glider (Petaurus breviceps).

Last Updated on Thursday, 12 January 2012 00:21
 

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