Close to 2,500 new rainforest seedlings have been set in soil at a nature refuge on the Atherton Tablelands, bringing a strategic wildlife corridor a few steps closer to completion. 

TREAT volunteers plant rainforest seedlings at a nature refuge in Millaa Millaa. 

The planting was part of a larger project to revegetate 3.5 hectares of cool-climate rainforest as part of the Rainforest Rangers’ Restoring Habitat for Endangered Species project, which will see a total of 11,900 trees planted and maintained at the nature refuge by June 2025.

To deliver this outcome, Rainforest Rangers has partnered with renowned Australian brand Dairy Farmers and fellow not-for-profit South Endeavour Trust, who own and manage the refuge. 

Rainforest Rangers Kelvin Davies (centre), with Dairy Farmers' Helena O'Hare and Josine Breebaart

The partnership with Dairy Farmers, who are contributing $100,000 to the project, was announced publicly at the site on Friday, February 16. 

Following site preparation, more than 80 TREAT volunteers, Rainforest Rangers and Dairy Farmers employees turned up to help plant the trees over two days. 

Freshly planted seedlings on the Atherton Tablelands. 

The weather did its part too, with wet season rains holding off for the duration of the planting before giving the seedlings a thorough drenching on Saturday afternoon. 

Dairy Farmers' Emma Ridd plants a rainforest tree. 

“Partnerships like this play a critical role in our collective mission to promote sustainability,” Gondwana Rainforest Trust CEO Richard Christian said. 

“What we are doing with Dairy Farmers… is an excellent example of how we can all come together to deliver significant positive environmental outcomes. 

"By doing this work here, we will be rejuvenating and restoring this ecosystem, enhancing biodiversity, and contributing to a more resilient and sustainable future for generations to come.”

Keaton Bevan and Rainforest Rangers' Kelvin Davies at the tree planting site.

About the project 

Strategically located between World Heritage-listed Maalan National Park and Herberton Range National Park, the Restoring Habitat for Endangered Species project will complete an important strategic wildlife corridor connecting the two areas once it’s revegetated.

This will enhance habitat connectivity for threatened, climate-sensitive species like the Lumholtz’s tree-kangaroo and the lemuroid and green ringtail possums which are restricted to the cooler parts of the Atherton Tablelands and higher areas of the Wet Tropics. 

During the tree planting event, it was observed that young trees planted at the site showed clear evidence of tree-kangaroo activity. There have also been recent sightings of endangered southern cassowaries at the property.

Find out more about this important project hereor sign up to volunteer and we’ll let you know about upcoming tree planting events in the Atherton Tablelands region. 

A special thank you to NQ Land Management Services for site preparation prior to the event; to TREAT for coordinating volunteers; to Northire for equipment hire; and to Ulysses Coffee for keeping us all caffeinated and providing tasty treats.

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