The Scarlet Bean (Archidendron ramiflorum sp. Cooper Creek) is stunning in the rainforest. Attached directly to the trunk of the tree, without the visual impediment of surrounding leaves, this relictual Gondwanan plant can only be found in the refugial rainforests on the eastern flank of Thornton Peak.
A recent study conducted by IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) has ranked Queensland’s Wet Tropics World Heritage Area as the second most irreplaceable natural World Heritage site and the sixth overall in global irreplaceability in a new international analysis.
The Two-spined Spider (Poecilopachys australasia) is marvellously discrete by day but conspicuous at night, with a yellow upper-abdominal surface with two horn-like spines, giving this spider its common name. Yellow and white bands and some red-brown markings make the spider a striking visual presence under light.
The arrival of these Christmas Beetles informs us that the festive season is on its way, but these beetles were photographed on a collection of Golden Cane Palms a few kilometres away at Cockatoo Hill Retreat. It was our friend Carmen who discovered them amassed upon one of her flowering palms. A quick search was made of our own Cooper Creek Golden Palms and nary a beetle was found. We hear that the season is the reason for the appearance of these beautiful creatures.
Northern Stoney Creek Tree-Frog (Litoria jungguy) is endemic to northern coastal Queensland and listed as ‘Near Threatened’ on the 2006 IUCN Red List. Promoted as secure within ‘protected area estate’, the species is suffering continued decline in representativeness and quality of habitat, throughout its range. It is restricted to rainforest where it is usually found around freshwater streams. The Cooper Creek population is currently conspicuous, with prolific mating-events that can be observed on our nocturnal wildlife tours.
The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental organisation. Its World Parks Congress 2014 is proposed as a landmark forum on global protected areas. As a World Heritage protected area, Cooper Creek Wilderness has an enduring interest in the decisions made through this International Congress. As an Ecotourism Accredited enterprise, we also have a hope that visitors who attend the conference will take the opportunity to visit our amazing rainforest and we are delighted to learn that our 4-hour Greater Wilderness Tour has been sponsored on the IUCN World Parks Congress website.
This colourful fruit fly Adrama selecta (Walker 1859) has emerged from the fruit of the extremely restricted Daintree Rainforest tree Ryparosa kurrangii (Webber 1999). Its emergence is particularly impressive, when the chemical character of the tree is taken into consideration. Ryparosa kurrangii releases the deadly gas hydrogen cyanide, at the site of tissue damage.
The beautiful Buff-breasted Paradise Kingfisher (Tanysiptera sylvia) has arrived in the Daintree Rainforest. The usual indicators that herald this ambassador of the wet season have taken place on cue. Mid-dry-season rain, about 10-cm occurred mid-October, softening the termite nests in preparation for the avian arrivals. The flight of the termite alates, kings and queens, has occurred and Jalbil has enjoyed its annual royal feast.